Since husband-wife duo Matt and Carrie Eddmenson started their designer denim line Imogene + Willie in 2009 out of a converted gas station in Nashville’s 12 South neighborhood, their greatest challenge has been keeping up with the brand’s incredible growth–which, you know, isn’t a bad problem to have. Featuring impeccable craftsmanship that pays attention to fit and stitching detail, their made-in-the-U.S.A. handcrafted denim fills a huge void in the market.
But their success isn’t exactly surprising when you consider the two have more than 30 years experience in the denim business, combined, behind them. Both spent time working in Carrie’s family business, Sights Denim, a company with a roster of clients that included, among others, Levi’s, Lucky and Girbaud. By the time the pair branched out on their own, they had spent years analyzing every single thing they did and did not like about a pair of jeans.
Which is precisely why their product offering is so streamlined. Imogene + Willie denim, available in only a few cuts, is purposely unadorned. The Eddmensons want their product to be timeless, classic and unique to the wearer. They want their customer to “still be wearing the same pair of jeans 10-plus years from now, only with holes and repairs and bleach stains,” Matt says.
With so much denim success under their belts, the Eddmensons have expanded Imogene + Willie’s product offering to include men’s shirtings and a new women’s collection which debuted this fall. Additionally, they are considering opening other retail locations. Ultimately, the duo wants Imogene + Willie to become a lifestyle brand. We caught up with the Eddmensons to find out how they got to where they are now–and where they’re going next. Read on.