The GRO Project – Melding Craftsmanship And Streetwear Sponsored Post

The GRO Project - The Intersection Between Craftsmanship And Streetwear

The GRO Project – The Intersection Between Craftsmanship And Streetwear

In following their brand mantra, “Stay inspired and always go after your passion before trend,”  The GRO Project have developed their own right hand twill selvedge denim marrying American denim craftsmanship with their drive to create a high quality streetwear garment. The finished product is Cardinal Denim, a one model brand with iterations in the denim as GRO looked around the world to source the best possible mills and manufacturers.

The initial inspiration for the Cardinal Denim was the White Oak 1968 Cone Red Selvedge, a high quality denim made in the USA. This fit nicely within the bounds of a traditional selvedge denim and a vintage look and feel; qualities which were being actively sought after. Having then tweaked the fit, which we will touch on, Cardinal Denim had the choice to either hold firm with their one quality product, or actively push harder and go further abroad.

The GRO Project - Cardinal Denim

The GRO Project – Cardinal Denim

Clearly, extending the Cardinal to other mills was the right choice. Next up was a trip to Italy, during which the Candiani Mill captured GRO‘s attention due to innovative and sustainable practices. This eco-friendly, 100% organic cotton denim quickly became the second iteration of the Cardinal, providing a denim which harmonizes between comfortable construction and maintained rigidity, all without any synthetic additions.

Finally, the Cardinal took itself to the quality denim hotbed, and streetwear mecca, of Japan, where two further denims were added. Both an aqua and a black speckled denim from the legendary Kuroki mill were given the Cardinal treatment. The Kuroki process is considered widely to be one of the best in the world, having refined their ability to bridge past and present techniques down to an art, making it a natural step for the Denver, Colorado brand to take.

The GRO Project's Cardinal Denim Fit

The GRO Project’s Cardinal Denim Fit

With four high quality international denims behind it, Cardinal is certainly a denim to be reckoned with, but would have been little without a highly designed fit. The fit is, in the most simple terms, a take on the original straight leg cut, with slight tapering at the ankles.

Part of the original goal of the Cardinal was to avoid the slim and skinny denim trends, but still make a jean that would be wearable for just about anyone. The resulting fit seems to accomplish this nicely, creating a streetwear accessible jean that doesn’t conform to the modern slim trend.

Selvedge Lined Belt Loops

Selvedge Lined Belt Loops

A secondary pride point of the jean’s design lies in the storage and drying functionality, specifically in the waistline dry tag and front two belt loops. The dry tag is comprised of a sturdy micro suede material, while GRO incorporated selvedge into the front two belt loops in the form of a holster-loop stitch.

As a result, the wearer has several options of properly hanging the denim for storage or post-wash drying purposes. As well, the denim is strengthened against traditional belt-wear as well as when attaching accessories from the loops.

Micro Suede Hang Dry Tag

Micro Suede Hang Dry Tag

The Cardinal is available at Blue Jeans Bar for those in the Denver, CO or San Jose, CA area or by phone order (970-429-8028).


  • Name: The GRO Project Cardinal Denim
  • Weight: 14 Oz. (except the 14.5 Oz. of the Candiani)
  • Fit: Slightly tapered straight leg cut
  • Denim: Indigo American Cone White Oak, Dark Indigo Italian Candiani, Black Speckled Kuroki, Aqua Kuroki
  • Available at: Blue Jeans Bar for $175.00 USD.

The Gro Project Deconstructed


Based in Vancouver, BC, Canada, Connor grew an interest in raw denim thanks to the process, maturation, patience and craft that goes into each individual pair. He also writes at REPOSITORY which he started alongside Rawr founder Nick Coe.

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  • oilpit

    That is the ugliest fit I have seen in a LONG time

    • YouGuysSuck

      Not everybody into denim wants people from 100yds away to be able to count their pubic hairs THRU their crotch-strangling jeans……and not everyone into denim’s the size of a crackrock smoking teenage emo skater who lives on vanilla wafer dust, spring water vapor, and sorrow. Slim fit denim has it’s fans, but there are lot of us, myself included, who do want nice selvedge denim in a cut that allows us to do certain things……those things being breathing, sitting without drawing blood, and having the ability to produce offspring.

      • Ty

        Bravo, this is the best comment I have ever read.

        • YouGuysSuck

          Am I lying? Plenty of guys want to wear selvedge and have nutsack/leg room at the same time. The fit is NORMAL PERSON FIT….. not painted on ball crushing skinny bullshit…..

      • oilpit

        Breath, take deep breaths and try to control your heart rate. Everyone can wear whatever kind of jeans they want to, even if some are unflattering and horribly out of style.

        • YouGuysAren’tThatBad

          These are unflattering if you really love looking at another man and being able to see how much meat he’s packing…..they look like jeans here, not blue spraypaint that’s gonna give him penis cancer and caked up paint crumbs in his pubic hair…….style’s an individual thing. Some people don’t give two wet f#cks what blogs or trend analysts say’s “in” or “out”…..their only concern is being 100% comfortable with their look 100% of the time. I don’t care how anybody wears their jeans…’s all personal preference and I’m not so much of a pr!ck that I’d sit back and point out how terribly out of fashion somebody I don’t know is for wearing something deemed out of style by god knows who…..wear what you want how you want……that’s how it should be……

          • OneKae

            Something that fits well doesn’t necessarily mean that it has to look painted on. You certainly make it sound that way, even though you seem to be so against the idea.
            This “fit” problem doesn’t just apply to denim, either. A pair of chinos or dress slacks with “plenty of room for your balls to breathe” would also be considered a less than optimal fit.
            But I agree – to each his own. Japan loves to wear looser fitting, workwear-proportioned denim as compared to the rest of the world, and hardly anyone’s gonna complain about that.

  • Devan Prithipaul

    hasnt this already been featured here, i remember GRO project and cardinal denim. i guess it was more of a new-release type article. anyway denim looks really nice, very unique texture and look, another pair of raw denim made different, but i agree that the fit that the model is a tad too big for my liking. but i don’t think thats a fit problem just a sizing thing.

    • Model Citizen

      Opinions in the comment section? What an outrage!

    • Devan Prithipaul

      then what do you want me to comment?

  • Kevin Proctor

    I really like to look of these jeans, only the fit is not my kind of thing. Do these come in a more slim fit as well?

  • Johnson Benjamin

    For whatever reason, I am digging these.

  • Jun

    I am digging the patch and hang dry tag man… seriously

    • BillygoatsGruff312


  • BillygoatsGruff312

    I normally hate “sponsored content”(i.e. ads), but every article here pretty much reads like sponsored content. This one’s not half bad. It seems like a different idea. Unfortunately, the GRO website doesn’t have very good photos (a couple fit pics and a gang of useless random macros) and they did not have any pics of the denims side by side (just the selvage). Maybe they can update this post with side by side pics of their 3 denims.

  • BillygoatsGruff312

    Important question: Where are these sewn; China, Japan or USA?

    • Soulstyle1

      The article and website says made in the USA.

      • BillygoatsGruff312

        The article says it in reference to the “White Oak 1968 Cone Red Selvedge” that inspired Cardinal. Devil is in the details.

  • Tina –

    This is very expensive, you can get a good denim jeans on discount for as low as 50 bucks.