New York: BPD Wash House Tour

The Stylesight Denim team recently discovered BPD Wash House, a full service denim development and consulting studio in Jersey City, NJ.  Since we were in Manhattan, we hopped on the train and headed out there to take a tour of the plant and speak with one of their denim specialists about their laundry services.

Blueprint Denim (BPD) Wash House has been in the jeanswear laundry business for well over 10 years. As the east coasts only full service denim development studio, the company has attracted some of the most prestigious designer and mass market names from in and around New York to use their laundry and consultancy services. Previous clients include major labels like Ann Taylor, Calvin Klein, Alexander Wang, Phillip Lim, and Ralph Lauren as well as smaller start-ups like J Press and Public School.

Located minutes away from Manhattan, BPD offers a full range of finishing and washing that include tinting, baking, spraying, sanding, coating and grinding services among others. While the house offers industry standard stonewash machines, BPD prides itself on its hand finishing by its team of skilled professionals. The wash house also holds an extensive collection of vintage clothing, ranging from the 40s onward, that are presented to clients for inspiration.  Clients are able to view this collection as well as newer custom-washed clothing to find finishes they would like to replicate for their own lines.

Product Development Manager Ross Riddle was on hand to give us a tour of the plant and show us some machines and processes available (check out this video to see the wash house in action).

After the tour, we had a chance to chat and Ross about some of the services and how business responds to certain trends in the denim industry. With a growing number of brands tapping into the “Made-In-America” movement we were interested to find out if this had effected BPD’s portfolio of clients. Ross pointed out that it is mostly the smaller brands that invest in the Made-in-America trend and that most of the denim BPD works with isn’t American made, but most of their clients are NY-based. Ross also highlighted that BPD requires no minimum run, which allows them to work with a wide variety of clients.

At the moment, the wash house is working on S/S 14 pieces and Ross noted destruction, heavy bleaching, pieced denim, and rip/repair as key trends. He also said the heritage trend is still going strong with brands requesting one offs and smaller runs.

While BPD has been in existence for over a decade, the current owner, Bill Curtin, has only been in charge for the past three years. Last September, Curtin launched his own line of denim, which debuted at Bloomingdale’s NYC during Fashion’s Night Out. A small yet focused collection, the line offers a range of selvedge jeans (ranging from $150 – $179) in seven specialist washes as well as denim jacket. During the launch events customers who attended the special trunk shows, were offered the chance to customise their jean purchases with unique washes and finishes that could be created via an iPad.

Besides its own line of denim, BPD also offers special Denim 101 classes, featuring hands on training, classroom instruction, Dystar chemical expertise, and the chance to create your own jeans.  The two-day, $1,000 course mostly appeals to industry professionals and consultants, but it is open to denim enthusiasts as well. So, if you plan to be in NY or NJ, take a look at BPD’s twitter account for class details. The next session will be October 14-15.

We were thrilled to visit BPD and see its capabilities firsthand. A big thank you to Ross for having us!

Know what’s next. Become a WGSN member today to benefit from our daily trend intelligence, retail analytics, consumer insights and bespoke consultancy services.