About two and a half months ago, I was asked to review a pair of Akaime A510-XX’s. At the time, I’d never heard of Akaime, but as a lover of all raw denim, I said absolutely. Two weeks later, a little box showed up on my doorstep straight from Indonesia. I tore into it and held up my new jeans. Even though the denim was sandpaper-rough and stiffer than the box it was shipped in, my initial thought looking at my new Akaime‘s was, “Damn, these are small.”
The history of Akaime is a little vague. Even after reaching out to the founder, Riyandi, for background info on the company, this was all I found out: “Akaime” roughly translates to “red eyes,” which symbolizes the “brave, unique identity of the company.” Akaime is an Indonesian denim company and sources its denim from Okayama, Japan. The jeans are stitched on Union Special, Reece, Durkopp and Kansai Special sewing machines.
Naturally, my next inclination was to Google search Akaime, which led me to akaime-denim.blogspot.com. Surely, there’d be more information about the company on their blog. Nope. All I found on the company blog were links to their current run of jeans (none of which were the A510-XXs I now had in my possession) and a Facebook badge that took me nowhere when I clicked it.
Regardless, I decided to charge ahead with the skeletal information. I mentioned above I received my A510-XXs roughly two months ago, and I’ve been wearing them five to six days a week since. I also mentioned I thought they looked small when I unwrapped them. The first time I pulled them on, I was worried I couldn’t get them buttoned, but somehow did. I am a standard 32 waist.
Before the jeans were shipped, Riyandi over at Akaime asked me to measure my waist with a tape measure and compare it to the Akaime sizing chart. My waist was almost exactly 32″. The sizing chart said an Akaime 32 waist actually runs 33″. I like tight jeans, but I figured since the jeans were being shipped from Indonesia, I should err on the side of caution and shoot a bit large. They were nowhere close to running large, which was torturous the first couple days, but that’s where my gripes with my Akaimes (mostly) end.
The denim itself is gorgeous, unsanforized, deep indigo denim. I’m not sure how many ounces the fabric weighs, but I’d guess 13-14. I’m a sucker for rough denim, and like I mentioned above, the denim felt like rigid sandpaper when I took the jeans out of their box. Because the denim was so starched, dramatic creasing in the crotch, behind the knee and around the ankles has formed as I’ve worn them, which will eventually lead to beautiful fades.
Rating – 4.5/5
The fit of the A510-XXs is slim, with a taper from the thigh to the ankle, and the inseam is long enough to cuff the jeans however you prefer. Aside from a simple angular pattern stitched in navy on the back pocket and a small white tab tag attached to the right back pocket, the A510-XXs are clean and minimal–no rhinestones, flamboyant decorations or extra selvedge edges on the coin pockets or belt loops. The A510-XXs are the type of jeans you pull on and forget about, because, as long as they fit, they’ll look amazing.
Rating – 5/5
Hardware & Construction
Aside from the torturously tight initial fit, my only other gripe with my A510-XXs are the exposed rivets on the front pockets. The rivets on the back pockets are hidden, but the exposed rivets in the front are plain and uninteresting. On top of being plain, they are shiny brass, so they call a lot of attention to themselves. I don’t think Akaime needs to have special rivets manufactured that bare the company name, but subdued or tarnished rivets would be much more appropriate on jeans this simple and clean.
Hardware Rating – 3/5
Construction Rating – 4.5/5
- Denim: 4.5/5
- Fit: 5/5
- Hardware: 3/5
- Construction: 4.5/5
- Overall: 4.25/5
Even though Akaime is an obscure company without much market presence in the United States, if my A510-XXs are any indication, their products are quality, and with the right marketing and distribution, there’s a lot of potential to succeed.
If you can figure out how to get your hands on a pair, I recommend you do. Fight your way through the first couple wears, and you’ll be rewarded with a great looking pair of jeans that’ll only get better with every wear.