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Introducing: Facing West

Drawing inspiration from the repairs of American miners and Japanese farmers alike, Lizzie Kroeze is giving these forgotten crafts a renewed appreciation for today.

In the run up to Amsterdam’s Denim Days next month (May 7-10) we shine a light on some of the city’s new indigo stars. Today we highlight native artisan and her newly launched label Facing West. Drawing on heritage crafts ranging from natural dying methods to stitching techniques from all over the world, Lizzie has created a small yet beautiful collection of indigo and denim goods all handcrafted in Europe’s denim capital.

Inspired by workwear and the techniques traditionally used to repair them, Lizzie has applied these methods in a renewed way, updating vintage shirts and jackets with a reusable appeal, just as these laborers intended with their repairs. Throughout the pages of her website you will find traditional crafts and folklores like sashiko and boro textures inspired by Japanese farmers or naive patchworks used by American miners as well as natural indigo dyed quilts.

A true advocate of handcrafted goods, Lizzie states, “There is something so precious, so beautiful in things handmade because you can see the time; the effort; the human touch that went into their creation. With the quilts and clothes I make for Facing West I try to capture that human touch and the beautiful imperfections that can result only from the human hand.

Championing Amsterdam’s indigo flag, Lizzie has teamed up with a number of local artisans in the city, including Atelier de l’Armée for a collection of sashiko bags as well as providing in store repairs and workshops for Blue Print Amsterdam. If you are attending Denim Days in Amsterdam next month you can catch Facing West at de Bijenkorf  department store on Dam Square, where Lizzie will be curating two spaces, one in the men’s department and one on the women’s department – using pieces by Facing West and other vintage indigo treasures (May 5-11).

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