Directed by Brian Kim and Olga Nazarova, THVM was born in Los Angeles California in 2009. Their goal is clear – design and producing quality premium denim. Their imaginative universe has no limits; from creating the most perfect jeans you could dream of, to self-editing the THVM Rag Magazine every season where they celebrate the creative process and the influence of other artistic disciplines.
Their recent collaboration with super model Behati Prinsloo has placed them in the global spotlight revealing a secret that, until then, had been hiding in an old factory in Downtown LA. We were lucky enough to have a chat with Brian and Olga while enjoying an outdoors fire and the dreamlike atmosphere of the West Coast.
THVM was born out of an atelier that Olga and I opened in Echo Park next to the Echoplex in 2009. We had just gotten married and decided to start a ready-made denim line with the aim of bringing a modern design to a LA made jeans for men and women. We slowly began to incorporate some of the artists and musicians into design projects that we were managing from the magazine we had created.When we embraced more of a collective approach to the design was really when THVM developed as a group.
THVM is an acronym for This Here Very Moment. We wanted to embody the idea of a group of creatives that was collectively present and collaborating. THVM is pronounced as "Them", we wanted to emphasize other people rather than our own singular directives.
We enjoy the process required to make our jeans and the end result should reflect that. Whether it is the attention to detail of a specialized weave pattern at the mill, or a denim wash that requires a more handmade approach, we aim to create jeans that are unique due to a different approach to design and manufacturing. The focus and care that goes into the process and design details must carry from R&D through to production.
We are very tactile designers and practice the tradition and craft of denim. Part of that means being close to the wash houses and factories and L.A. is the best place in the USA to work with denim. It just doesn't make any sense to us to be based or to produce anywhere else. I still create the first patterns and sew the first samples as I think it’s important to understand how the whole design and production process functions. I then take these first samples and work with the L.A. factories to tune the designs. We wouldn’t be able to have the synergy between design and production that is required to create refined design details if we weren't here.
Jeans have evolved a lot since the Europeans transformed it from a work wear garment into a fashionable icon piece. Denim is constantly developing and the industry of denim is very technological and creative. Today the denim fabric itself is very advanced and has multiple yarns to stretch and recover, offering a performance of the fabric that wasn't available 10 years ago. A good jean requires the best fabric available which is extremely soft to the touch and can create an incredible fit through its performance. The 5pkt design details are important as they are always evolving. To be contemporary and refined you have to develop a language of design that is fresh and reflects the aesthetics of our times.
We started the magazine as a way to celebrate the creativity of the friends that we have made in the east side L.A. community. L.A. is a very inspiring place to be and we wanted to thank the community around us and appreciate what we have here. Since its conception, we have broadened our resources as well as the magazine’s subjects, yet it’s still about inspiration. We want to share what inspires us and the projects that are born from there.
We view our points of inspiration from a multi-disciplinary perspective. We find it more interesting when art, design, fashion, and lifestyle cross over and infuse into each other.
We are very excited about the Behati Prinsloo collaboration coming out in February. We had a great time working together and believe that that energy shows in the pieces we created together. Behati has such a natural confidence and ease that she can wear almost anything and make it work. Yet she also knows exactly what she likes and relates to. We had such a fluid connection that it was very enjoyable and smooth collaboration.
We have some interesting roommates here at THVM studios. We try to surround ourselves with all kind of artists. We have painters, photographers, graphic designer, jewelry artist, and musicians, all working here together on their own projects and collaborations as well. The music here gets very eclectic as you have music coming from all over the building. Sometimes someone will be blasting Spaceghostpurp then a Troller song will come on in the next room. We try to take turns blasting music whenever possible. Troller, Kendrik, Lamar, Slayer, Horrors, Vum, Doom, A$ap Rocky, Spaceghostpurp, 2 Chainz, The Cure, Can...