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Messages - Kimball

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I've had jeans that smell of urine and pennies, mainly because my crotch does too  :D
:D :D :D

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We have no idea what the issue is....

Two (multipart) questions for you, then:
1) Has anyone readily available to this forum ever smelled the indigo abd/or black dye used in this fabric, or have they actually been around for the dye process? If so, could they give a rough description of the dye smells or corroborate whether the smell could indeed be a dye issue? (Wonky long shot, I know.)

2) Without giving away any proprietary information, could someone actually describe the overdye process? Like, how do you physically do it? What makes the fugitive pigment fugitive? Do you indeed use some sort of fixative for the indigo? And how do you get the black to stick without then sealing the indigo so that it can't chip?

Question 2 is equally because I'm a curious nerd with an interest in textiles as much as it to help me figure out what to do with my weird stink-pants.


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My 634s14ozOD have a faint coppery smell to them. It never bothered me though. I had a pair of Unbranded black denim that smelled like sulphur so badly that I had to return them.


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I am very fortunate in that one of my oldest and best friends was a long time men's denim designer for Levi's, is currently the head of men's denim for Wrangler, and is now about to transition into being the head of their fabric and dye development program. She says that the smell is the dye. Specifically the indigo, which I thought strange since these pants must basically get boiled during the overdye process. If I were to bet, I'd guess that there's some sort of fixative used in the process to keep the indigo from bleeding out while the black goes on top, so who knows... Maybe someone on staff will chime in and share some knowledge.

ALL THAT SAID... I have a pair of black sulphur dyed "Buck" jeans from Indigofera. They call it "gunpowder selvedge" but really it's probably just the perfect crappiness level of black dye to give awesome fades. They smell pretty much like a hot spring, but I actually kinda like it... Heh...

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I wonder if I might... smell these pants...  ??? :D

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Oh, and for whatever it's worth, I washed them on delicate in cold water, and pulled them out for all but the beginning of the first spin cycle.

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Hey thanks for chiming in!
Agreed that it's weird, but I bought them directly off the rack from Self Edge in San Francisco.  I'm wondering if I just got a weird pair. I hope that I can sort it out; I was planning on getting a matching vest at some point, but now I'm a little bit spooked, because the only thing I can think of is that there's something funky about the black dye, and I am hesitant to throw hundreds more dollars on a second chance.

As for the marbling, my guess is that maybe all of the de-stinking attempts have loosened the dye more than normal. No idea. Makes me sad because the whiskers and combs were finally starting to pop through and now the whiskers at least are pretty much nuked. Feels like a waste of time and money, and a war lost trying to keep my favorite pair in service.

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Hello all. First time here doing more than lurking. Tried the search function for this and couldn't find anything relevant:
I got a pair of 888s-OD jeans about a year ago. From day one they have had this faint but pervasive urine mixed with old pennies kind of smell that has steadily gotten worse with wear, to the point of being unwearable.

I've hung them out in the sun, soaked them, soaked them in woolite, hand washed them in woolite, hung them out in hotter sun for a longer time, soaked in vinegar, and now finally just threw them in the washing machine with woolite.
Unfortunately they got about 30 odd seconds of spin cycle before I could get in to pull them out, and now I've got a ruined fade *and* pants that smell like someone peed in a coin jar.

Kind of running out of ideas for the smell, and looking for advice on the fade. Anyone ever try to re-black their OD denim? Anyone ever do an ocean wash on them either? Figure the jacked up fade would get blended away with the latter, but I'm understandably hesitant to go Guinea pig with the most expensive pants I've ever worn. Plus I want to get rid of the nasty smell first or these might as well just end up in the trash.

It's all a mega bummer. These were my favorite go-to jeans, but I've been less and less comfortable wearing them because they stink, and now they kinda look like garbage. I actually wish they looked as good in person as they do in this photo, but they don't.
Any ideas? Thanks!
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