Eric and Darrin, the founders of dutil boutique, shares their passion on jeans and their story to where they got to today. They also talk about their concept and idea for their up and coming dutil jeans.

Describe the history of dutil.

Eric: Dutil, basically, is a concept that was born in December of 2005. I came from the eye wear industry. I have worked for Oliver’s People for thirteen years and I am the Canadian sales representative. My boss at the time launched a brand called Mosley times that had done collaborations with Crooks and Castles, Free City and the list goes on. He decided to go into lifestyle stores and boutiques. I was giving out samples, doing my thing and during that time, I was exposed to a new word I have never been exposed to; I always had a strong passion for denim. Everyone partakes in jeans, whether you are the richest person in the world, or the poorest, whether you are the coolest person in the world, or someone who can care less about fashion. Everyone is associated with denim and that intrigued me. I asked people what they did well with, and the response was, “denim, denim! We do well with denim.”

I asked this guy in a Can and he said, “we do so well with denim, we are moving away from it. We are pushing customers away”. I thought to myself that this was the biggest idiot in the world.

Look at eyeglass wear, everyone is selling this one item, and the demand for denim is so much more. We met before the store opened; he was distributing for for a company called Earnest Sewn Jeans.

Darrin: I met Eric when I was a distributor of Earnest Sewn Jeans. Eric was the vision and he said, “I am going to be the denim store in Canada for image, for the concept of being true and authentic.” I was blown away by his passion, his presence and his loud voice. I said let’s check out the store and he showed me an empty space and said, “this was going to be a denim library”, and I envisioned what he was talking about. Dutil is a brand we are proud of, and want to keep being proud of, and other people that feel proud to be a part of. We want to have the best quality, and include everyone from the world in our store.

The idea of consumers picking their custom fits on the anniversary of one of your carriers, “Naked and Famous”, seemed to be a great opportunity for customer experience and recognition. Are one of the aims for dutil for the customer is to have jeans that is more ‘personal’ to them? As in have a store that can ultimately have specific styled jeans for every individual?

Darrin: Eric met a local designer of a jeans company called Naked and Famous, in which dutil carried their jeans. Now the brand that dutil introduced to the world has blown up to a point where the designer was featured in GQ magazine. For the anniversary, he created an event to make custom fit jeans for every customer that came in. We naturally do that, whether we come out with a slim fit for millions of people, we bring a personal experience. When we grow, we are not going to change our philosophy. We believe what we do is personable because it is coming from authentic base. We strive for long and short custom fits for a men and women.

Do you feel world struggles help powerhouse creativity in new styles for jeans?

Eric: As a small company, we are very mobile and free. WE are always going to be in the basic. We are never going to have big ‘R’s’ in our jeans. We celebrate simplicity and quality. We do not live above our means, we are humble. It would be the wrong move to change our philosophy for a recession. The recession shows who the real players are.

How is the concept of the layout of the store come to mind?

Darrin: The denim library was the original concept. He wanted the entire environment to be consumed with denim.

Eric: What you see in the store is an evolution of a simple idea I had the idea of rolled jeans from a side profile. The organic feeling was there from the start and the structure of the building is actually from the 1880s. We just took the beauty of the building and added the beauty of denim, and fused them together.

What does a carrier have to show in their jeans for you to express interest in selling their jeans?

Eric: Every relationship is different. Sometimes people find us, sometime we find them. Sometimes, we think a brand will be awesome, and it is ten times bigger than what we expected. We embrace a brand rather than holding it for ourselves. A customer will not care if a particular chain is exclusive. You have to appeal towards your product.

Darrin: Our main focus is building the brand dutil and building other brands.

Eric: We going to be launching our own brand by the same name of our store, and when that comes out, it will be top quality because we have put our soul into this jean.

Dutil will be coming out with our own eyeglass wear, a million percent, I know it is the same thing, but it sounds so much better!

What can consumers expect with the brand of dutil jeans?

Eric: It will be straightforward; it is going to be a beautiful, and luxurious. Slim straight for men, skinny fit for women. There will be two washes, one salvage, one with simple detail. The end result will be something that is very beautiful

Darrin: It will be a by product of our obsession.

What is the definition of dutil? And What does it mean to you?

Eric: In French it means ‘of use’. I had a favourite ex-girlfriend, and her last name was ‘dutil’ and I asked her back in the day if we ever break up can I use her name. But I really love the name because to me it sounds and looks sophisticated, it doesn’t alienate and it is ‘intriguing’. I also like the simplicity of it. I see it as a brand that will transience over time.

What experiences while you were going up seemed unrelated to your interest at the time, but now seem to directly inspire or influence your motivation to start dutil?

Eric: When you are a passionate person, you can make anything a passion. Back when I was young, at my father’s business. A man would come by and fix typewriters. When he worked on the typewriter, he had so much passion that I said, “f**k I wanted to fix typewriters!”.  He was so into what he was doing that I thought he could have open any store. I think it is a personality type. When you get into a concept or an idea, it’s there. It is the same commonality between music and clothing; writing a song is no different than making a jean.

Darrin: The first thing I thought of was my grandfather. He was very stylish back in the 1930s and ’40s. I look back and I’m like, “wow fashion recycles itself!” There are definitely some commonalities that come back, the striped shirt and the blazer, but jeans have been elevated to be socially acceptable. I’m motivated by the fact that what happened in fashion twenty years ago will become mainstream again, but denim will always be a staple.

Eric: A lot of things came out of a need for something. Jeans were never meant to be a fashion item; they started as a durable item for men working on the railroad and now it has become something amazing.

If you were going into space, and you could only bring one pair of jeans you personally have, which jean would trust to leave Earth?

Darrin: I would bring the most durable raw jean I could get my hands on.

Eric: I would try to find my favourite musician, and get a jean. It would be really cool if I had a pair of jeans from Elvis Presley that he threw up on and that could be archived or I can wear in space.

What would be a picture of a perfect jean?

Eric: A perfect jean is something that we feel proud of. The perfect jean probably will evolve in the future. What seems great now may not be great in the future.

Darrin: There isn’t a perfect jean, because it is the imperfections that make the jean beautiful.  What you love on your jean may be perfect for you, but not for someone else. It is something that is personal.

How do you want the customer to feel when they put on any jeans from dutil?

Darrin: That they walk away with a great experience that will make them come back.

Eric: There is nothing like a connection a human being has with an item. If I see a old radio from the 1920s, you just see it on my face, you see that I bond with that item. I want that person to feel so connected and so passionate that there is nothing in our store that is unattainable, so once you connect with that jean, you can have it. You can feel that fulfillment with something that makes you feel proud.

What do jeans symbolize?

Eric: To me, it symbolizes diversity.

Darrin: Its universal, everyone wears jeans. There is over a 99% chance that you will see someone wearing jeans whenever you walk out on to the street.

Eric: Not even watches! What in the world unifies people as much as jeans? Not even religion can unify people as much as jeans do.

Explain in your words how jeans can bring out someones swagger?

Darrin: There are differences between women and men, the body of a woman is completely different. A woman tries to find a pair of jeans and look upon the mirror to see if it is the perfect fit. If it is, it brings them a sense of confidence.

Eric: Whenever you invest in yourself, it brings confidence to you. When you are fitting jeans on someone, it accentuates positive aspects of their body; they can’t deny that and people respond to that.

What does HYPE mean to you?

Darrin: Defines the length of excitement

Eric: I think the word HYPE is very limiting as it stands for a moment in time.

Check out the dutil website at www.dutildenim.com