"In our busy lives, time is often considered our most valuable commodity. There’s never enough of it, and we are constantly trying to decide how to spend it wisely. It’s precisely the element of time that drives Menno van Meurs, co-founder of Amsterdam-based denim brand Tenue de Nîmes.
From jeans to vintage Eames chairs, slow drip coffee to suede Red Wing boots, Menno embraces “the good things in life.” It’s no coincidence that all of these objects take time to make — and that they’re crafted to last. When stepping into Tenue de Nîmes’ studio space in the west of Amsterdam, it feels like time stops. Warm chestnut mid-century cabinets host Japanese dolls, whiskey bottles, and spools of colored yarn; stuffed foxes peek out from behind piles of jeans; and 1950s jackets are hung like pieces of art on blue walls. Everything in the room demands your attention as every piece has a story to tell. Together, the objects form a timeless harmony that can only be identified as Tenue de Nîmes."
FvF: When did you realize you wanted to work in retail?
MM: I was 15 years old. I thought working in retail was one of the coolest things you could do. I was obsessed with sports at the time and used to take the train to this one sports shop in Rotterdam almost every weekend. I was there so often that the manager eventually offered me a job. I guess you could say I was hooked from then on. At 17, I started working at a jeans store which opened my eyes to the incredible world of denim. Even though I was studying sports and economics at the time, I was happiest when working at the shop. I always made sure I was up in time to open the doors at 9am, even if I had been out the night before until the early morning. When I finished my studies I knew I wanted to get back into retail but found it hard to explain to people. With a business degree you’re expected to buy a suit and start your career at a corporate office but that was the last thing on my mind.
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Interview by Margot van der Krogt.
Images by Jordi Huisman.