In or around 2008 I ran into the owner of Gilded Age at a trade show in Vegas. The girls from Witty Pioneers hired me to build there trade show booth for there client Nylon Magazine. At the time I was a set builder and met them at The Space photo studio above Chelsea Market in NYC. I started making jeans in 2006 when PRPS commercialized the $300 Japan imported jean market. Gilded Age was looking for a cheaper American option. I had a relationship with Cone Denim and we made jeans with White Oak Mill 14oz selvage denim. This is a photo my friend took of a jean Barney’s was selling for about $250.
Our copper rivets from Kentucky are applied with a cast iron foot press that is circa 1930’s. Found in a mid town Manhattan small machine shop. It didn’t work and needed to be restored. I took a chance and bought it. I was able to fix it and know it works great. The best rivets are the kind that have a post and ring. The ring sits at base of the post. The foot press cause the post to mushroom over the ring. This permanently attaches the rivet to the jean. The common modern way is with a cap instead of ring which occasionally falls off like most caps!