MANILA, Philippines — On its way to the 150th anniversary of blue jeans in 2023, iconic denim brand Levi’s yesterday opened its flagship Philippine store on the second floor of SM Mall of Asia Main Mall in Pasay City.
The store is the first in the country to offer hand-painting and digital embroidery customization services through its in-house sewing studio, said Marielle Ardiente, vice president of marketing and customer experience for Signature Lines Inc.
“Everyone is like ‘my own identity’; younger generations are like that, right? That’s why the brand’s customization motto is ‘Started with us, ended with you,'” Ardiente explained in an interview. with Philstar.com.
“As you can see, the store concept has been rejuvenated. Even the silhouettes have become the target of the youngest. The concept of the store in terms of lighting is not so dark anymore,” she described the general layout and mood of the store. Along with having more spacious fitting rooms, there are digital tools in-store to help customers find the perfect fit.
Along with its Tailor Shop which offers customization through collectible patches, yokes, hems and pins, at the heart of the store is one of the brand’s core values, sustainability. So customers aren’t just invited to bring in their old Levi’s jeans to be refurbished by the Tailor Shop; shoppers can also discover new sustainable lines such as the Fresh collection, with partially biodegradable, plant-based clothing made from fruits and vegetables.
Ardiente recalled that the brand recently announced that 50-70% of its bottoms are already built using waterless technology. According to the United Nations, a pair of jeans takes 7,500 liters of water to grow cotton, build it and even prepare it for sale.
In addition to saving gallons of water, Levi’s, Ardiente said, prides itself on its classic 501 jeans made from sustainable organic cotton, as well as its collections made partially from recycled water bottles.
True to the brand’s philosophy of construction and sustainability, the store also offers Handmade in Japan collections.
“One of our goals is to extend the life of clothes as much as possible, so that they are ‘worn longer’,” Ardiente pointed out.
Until June 26, shoppers can get a free Recycled Shoulder Bag for every P3,500 purchase at the new store. Until June 12, SM Advantage card members get 10% off all regular-priced items while Prestige members get an additional 501 points for every P10,000 purchase.
After SM Makati and Mall of Asia, SM plans to open more Levi’s stores with a similar Tailor Shop concept in SM Fairview, Megamall, North EDSA, Lipa in Batangas and Tuguegarao.
The city of Tuguegarao, Ardiente said, is “denim country,” just like San Francisco, Calif. – the birthplace of blue jeans where trader Levi Strauss invented them to cater to gold rush prospectors.
Since their invention in 1873, Levi’s jeans have become one of the most recognizable pieces of clothing in the world, known for their classic American style and effortless cool. In 2019, Levi Strauss & Co.’s reported net tax revenue was $5.8 billion. Available in over 110 countries, the brand celebrates 501 Day every May 20.
Ardiente said its workforce has returned to pre-pandemic levels due to the influx of shoppers, even on weekdays.
“Though we’re not exactly there yet, but we feel the pandemic is coming to an end” — at least, in retail, she said.
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