Side Projects are important.

For me, the best way to make ideas happen is to start them as side projects. That way they don’t have to provide you with a living. You can still eat if they fail. They don’t have a deadline. And, as there is no time pressure, you don’t revert to your usual formula. You try new things. You experiment. You give them time just to play around for a while. 

They are what you call a Labour of Love. You provide the ‘Labour’. It provides you with the ‘Love’. The thing I have noticed is that side projects have a happy habit of becoming your main project.

So select your side projects well.

Some learning along the way.

1, Don’t follow.

2, Don’t seek consensus.

3, Trust your instinct.

4, Look for what isn’t there. But should be.

5, Ideas make you stand out. Great ideas make you standalone.

6, Ask dumb questions. They may not be that dumb.

7, Most great ideas have difficult births. Who would have bet on the caterpillar turning out so well?

8, Inform your ideas from what you see, what you hear, what you feel. Output needs input.

9, You already know your co-founder.

10, Remember, ideas are plentiful. People who make them happen are not.

11, Don’t let your idea down: Execute well.

12, Find the very best people you can and work with them.

13,Timing is more important than you think.

14, Love what you do. Or don’t do it.

15, Answer common problems. But do it uncommonly well.

16, Build something that you wouldn’t sell.

17, Some ideas look good on paper and suck in real life. And some suck on paper but work in real life.

Don’t be quick to judge your ideas.

18, Change something that bugs you. Chances are it bugs lots of people.

19, Failure is temporary. Get back on that darn horse.

20, Hire optimism as well as talent.

21, There are no short cuts. Do the work.

22, Enjoy the ride. It may be the best bit anyhow.

23, If you are going to try, go all the way.

A gobstopper has layers. So does the best selvedge.

As you suck a gobstopper, it reveals the next layer underneath. And as odd as it sounds, so does the very best Selvedge denim. That’s because the best selvedge is hand dipped many, many times. Alas, not all Selvedge is born the same.Some are dyed with a chemical dye. It’s quick, efficient and cost effective. There’s nothing wrong with it.

But one rule we have at Hiut Denim Co is work with the best. So we persuaded the iconic Japanese mill ‘Kuroki’ to supply us. They are world renowned for their ‘Genuine indigo dyed’ Selvedge. Our Kuroki Selvedge is dyed no less than 10 times.

Natural indigo dying is an extremely laborious and costly process. The cotton is dipped in the indigo prior to being shuttle woven. And it is dipped repeatedly. The more dips it has, the darker the cotton will be.

And after all that painstaking hard work, when you compare a natural dyed jean and a synthetic one, there would be very little to tell them apart. But under the surface, the story is different.

A machine dyed indigo dye only “clings” to the surface of the cotton yarn (leaving a white core). But a bona-fide indigo hand-dyed denim cotton deeply penetrates right down to the center of the yarn. As a result, hand-dyed denim will not only fade more slowly, but more beautifully.

Its layers will be revealed over time. Like, you know what…

If you like ideas, it will inspire you.