The History Of And Story Behind Momotaro Jeans

Momotaro Jeans, taking its name from Japanese folklore, began in 2005 and since then has continued to produce some of the highest quality, long lasting raw denim on the market. Their production facilities occupy the history rich Kojima region of Okayama, Japan, known as the location for high quality textiles in Japan.

In this article we will take a closer look at the history of Momotaro Jeans and look at some of their unique signatures that continue to make the brand a favorite amongst denim enthusiasts. 

Japanese Folklore

The story of Momotaro is one of the five major stories of Japanese folklore. Momotaro, according to Japanese legend, is the name of a small boy born from a giant peach who descends to Earth to be the son of an elderly couple. The boy rejuvenates the old couple, making them feel young again, and encouraging them to follow their dreams.

Momotaro Jeans - Rooted In Japanese Folklore

This story has been passed down for generations and remains a part of Japanese culture today. This is where Momotaro gets its name, as well as where many of the companies roots have sprouted from.

The Story

James Dean

In the 1960’s the youth of Japan began to demand replicas of American blue jeans that they had seen in Hollywood films. Most of the denim came from the Kojima region of Okayama, Japan, but it was not the same quality as American denim, and Japanese consumers demanded better.

It was not until the 1980’s when textile manufacturers began to incorporate ring-spun and rope-dyed denim that Japanese denim was able to equal the quality of American denim. Around this time, Japan Blue Company was created, and under it Momotaro Denim.

The two came into being along with other textile mills and studios dedicated to indigo dying. Since, the Kojima area has become known for producing some of the best denims in the world.


Momotaro Jeans

Momotaro began in 2005 as part of the Japan Blue Company and has focused solely on producing top quality denim ever since. Today, Momotaro still produces the majority of their jeans in the Kojima region of Okayama, Japan.

Momotaro jeans are constructed from 100% Zimbabwean cotton, which is renowned for its quality, durability, unique fading characteristics, and ability to hold indigo dye. The jeans are put together by hand to ensure the expected quality from their denims.

Momotaro today has a variety of labels that cater to many price-points and denim preferences. The labels include the Copper label, Vintage label, and the Battle label. The Copper label includes a rope-dyed denim that is rinsed once in mineral water. The Vintage label features a shrink-to-fit construction and a rougher, slubbier denim.

The Battle label features the heaviest weight, dark indigo denim along with the signature white stripes on the back pocket. There is also the lesser known Gold label, which includes denim woven on hand-operated shuttle looms, that come in at a whopping $2000.


Momotaro Selvedge

Momotaro’s denim has many subtle but unique signatures. These include two white stripes across the back pocket on the Battle label denim, a reference to the brands Japanese roots and a nod to the Samurai of the Edo period.

Additionally they use a unique pink selvedge line and pink thread, designed to mimic the pink of the peach in the Momotaro legend. The leather patch as well as rivets also bear a picture of the boy, Momotaro, being born from the peach – yet another show of Japanese heritage.

Momotaro and the Japan Blue Company are known for their ability to combine old world techniques of dying and producing denim with more modern fits and other details to create a completely unique and highly sought after denim that has only recently been offered for sale outside of Japan.

Momotaro uses the best quality cotton and indigo for their jeans which ensure a durable product that will last many years and will only get better looking with time. Their unique features and dedication to quality manufacturing has cemented Momotaro as one of the premiere denim manufacturers in the world today.

Darius Lalier

Darius is currently a student living in New York City, attending New York University. Darius has a strong interest in all things raw denim and a specific interest in American manufacturing. Follow him on Instagram and Twitter @dlalier.

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  • Fudowudo

    Article should have included more information about the different grades of momo denim. Otherwise, great read:)

    • Harry

      I’m not a fan of the new “trend” where commenters feel they get to tell the authors what the article should (and shouldn’t) have been like. The author has obviously taken a huge amount of time putting this article together, if he (or the rawr editors) thought that it should have been different then it would have been.

      Everyone here needs to stop being so pretentious and realise that the comment section is not for individual criticisms of the articles or for telling the staff what the articles are missing. They are a place that us readers can come and discuss the topic or add to the article.

      • Matthew Chen

        Hear hear!

      • Jun

        Welcome back Devan 😉

      • Daniel

        OR the comments are for the personal opinions of the readers. the authors are providing a service to the readers, so as readers i dont know why we cant tell the authors what we want to read? what do you want from the comment section, 14 people saying how much they love the article? how boring. adding to the article is part of what Fudowudo is talking about so your criticism is hypocritical and misleading. there was nothing said here that i did not already know, i would have liked more information on the actual construction, mill, and fading that momotaro jeans produce.

        • chicagolaw1


        • Fudowudo

          My thoughts exactly.Kudos to u dan.

        • Harry

          Sorry, I should’ve added to the end of my comment that this was just my opinion. Of course, if the majority of commenters prefer to use the comments to criticize the article then I spoke out of place. I was under the impression that most were of the same mindset as me. Who knows, the rawr staff might like the criticism?

        • Chris

          Posted my comment before I saw this. Agreed.

      • Chris

        ‘or add to the article.’ by telling them how it could be improved… which is entirely fair enough,

  • Perry Goh

    My favourite model is 0705SP with Going to Battle stripes.

  • YouGuysSuck

    Went to grab another pair a few weeks ago in Shibuya and the shop closed down or moved. No clue where they went. Great denim and the store workers make sure you get a pair that fits PERFECTLY.

  • SaladHead

    I absolutely LOVE momotaro and the aesthetics of the brand. I love brands that try to draw on their cultural roots, and Momotaro does just that, at least.
    Great article about a great brand!

  • Grandier

    do you smell that awesome thing?

    it’s an awesome smell of HISTORY!

    • chicagolaw1

      “it’s an awesome smell of HISTORY!”

      ^Damn autocorrect! He meant to say “MARKETING.”^

      • Grandier

        well…it’s still the history of the brand. to an extent, i guess =

  • Ray Conde

    I dont think the few samurai in the Edo period sported the two white stripes in any way.

    • Battle Stripes

      You’re correct. The battle stripes are a nod to the flag that Momotaro carried into battle in the Japanese folk tale. This is seen in the photo at the top of the article.

      • Ray Conde

        “Momotaro’s denim has many subtle but unique signatures. These include two white stripes across the back pocket on the Battle label denim, a reference to the brands Japanese roots and a nod to the Samurai of the Edo period.”
        Under the last picture.

        • Battle Stripes

          Haha I’m agreeing with you. This article is incorrect. The battle stripes are not a nod to the Japanese samurai of the Edo period but actually a nod to the flag that Momotaro carried into battle.

        • Battle Stripes

          Haha I’m agreeing with you. The article is incorrect. The battle stripes are not a reference to the Japanese samurai of Edo period but a nod to the flag that Momotaro carried into battle.

    • Momo

      Japan in Japanese is “nihon or Nippon.” Which translates as “two (horizontal) lines. During the edo period samurai who were commissioned by the feudal government would indeed be carrying this flag. It amazes me how people just post ignorant false uninformed statements for attention.

  • Zelch

    Does anyone know what Momotaro label the 0702s fall under? They don’t fully fit any of the descriptions of the copper, vintage, or battle labels.

    • chicagolaw1

      None of the above: No JB patch or peach arc, so not Copper; They are sanforized, so not Vintage; No stripes, so not GtB

      • Zelch

        So are you saying they have no label or just repeating what I said?

        • chicagolaw1

          I’m agreeing that they don’t fit any of the descriptions for vintage, copper, or gtb and stating that they, therefore, are not classified within any of said categories.

    • Chris Reilly

      Their updated website lists the XX02 fabric as being “special.” I guess anything outside of the existing lines is considered “Special”

  • Ryan Chinaski


    • Paul



    I have 2 pairs of Aika that I thought had something in common with Momotaro, Anyone coment on this ?

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