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No Faith, a New Denim Label to Watch

From a live-work space in Cologne, 22-year-old designer Luis Dobbelgarten is building a budding business in deconstructed jeans.
No Faith, the darkly romantic urban label launched by Luis Dobbelgarten, is building a budding business in deconstructed denim from Cologne, Germany.
Designer Luis Dobbelgarten is building a budding business in deconstructed denim from Cologne, Germany. (Courtesy)

Over the last six years, No Faith, the darkly romantic label launched by Luis Dobbelgarten, has shipped thousands of pairs of deconstructed jeans from a nondescript brick building in Cologne, Germany, where the self-taught designer both lives and works.

More often than not, his customers discover the brand on Instagram and order directly from a website made by Dobblegarten himself. The label makes ready-to-wear pieces like oversized bomber jackets and slouchy knitwear and, later this year, plans to launch leather outerwear and penny loafers. But its $200 jeans are its main focus, generating about 90 percent of sales.

Thus far, 2022 has been a good year for Dobbelgarten, a former skateboarder who began dabbling in fashion at the age of 15 when he sold silkscreen t-shirts to his classmates. The deconstructed denim trend that has seen one of fashion’s most popular materials twisted by the likes of Y/Project and Diesel designer Glenn Martens has given No Faith a boost. So have celebrities like Lil Tecca and German rapper CRO, both of whom have worn the label.

No Faith’s denim creations are inventive. One style comes with 64 pockets wrapping around its legs like a honeycomb; another comes with seams adorned with tufted, unraveling edges. Its flared, 90s-era, wide-leg rave trousers are distressed in random places.

“I am not a big fan of [traditionally] beautiful things,” says Dobblegarten, who sources his fabrics in Europe and finds inspiration in the mundane. Recently, he was inspired by his grandmother’s lace curtains, which resulted in lace patches applied to corduroy jackets and pants.

A year ago, the label began distributing via two independent retailers: Nubian in Tokyo and Roadsign Studio in Taipei. Yifan Yeh, the founder and buyer of Roadside, stumbled upon the label on Instagram two years ago and was immediately drawn to its arresting designs.

With 2022 sales tracking 250 percent up on last year (a recent pop-up in Cologne, saw fans waiting six hours to snag a pair of No Faith denim), Dobblegarten aims to expand his team. He says he has received offers from German investors but is waiting for “the right partner.”

Albert Ayal is the founder of Up Next Designer.

Further Reading

Glenn Martens speaks exclusively to Tim Blanks about re-energising the Italian denim brand, designing for his own label Y/Project and pushing people to rethink fashion.




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