Eric Yelsma (Detroit Denim)

August 19, 2014, 11:00 PM UTC – August 20, 2014, 2:00 AM UTC

American made now means that something is made with a purpose beyond just making money. Something that is American made usually requires extra effort & resources.

About this event

1. Where is your hometown? I was born in upstate NY, but have lived in Michigan since I was 2. 2. Where are you based now? I live in Ann Arbor, however, I spend nearly all my time in Detroit 3. Three adjectives to describe your line, they would be…durable, simple, purposeful 4. What does American made mean to you? American made now means that something is made with a purpose beyond just making money. Something that is American made usually requires extra effort & resources. However, the results are often worth that additional effort. For Detroit Denim, our mission is to only use the best American made materials and manufacture them in Detroit. 5. Favorite USA landmark? I am partial to the Macinac Bridge and love our National Park system. 6. What makes you proud to be an American?I’m proud of the ingenuity, grit & determination that many American possess. These are great & necessary qualities to have in Detroit. 7. One fact we couldn't find out via Google about you/your line? My parents were teachers (home-economics & college professor) who both grew up on farms in Iowa. I believe this instilled in me a desire for knowledge as well as a hard work ethic. I had a corporate job for nearly 15 years, but longed to do something with my make things. You never know when it really started. As far back as I can remember, I have loved jeans. And with a Home Economics teacher for a mother, there was always a sewing machine around that I would use. It started with just modifications, adjustments and experiments. Then I grew up, and things came full circle about 20 years later. I was looking for a specific pair of jeans. I knew what I wanted, but couldn’t find it. Many questions and queries to dozens of people….and then it started about 3 years ago. Planning, designing, and speccing out. Then came suppliers, patterns, revisions and more revisions. And here we are in Detroit, in a small factory hand-making jeans. Sweating the details. Making sure each pair fits the ideal of what jeans used to be and what they should be. It’s a durable pair of jeans with a great fit that will continue to look great throughout their longer-than-usual life.

Check out what happened



August 19 – 20, 2014
11:00 PM – 2:00 AM UTC


11:00 PMNetworking and Food
12:00 AMFireside Chat
1:00 AMNetworking


  • Faris Alami

    International Strategic Management

    Chapter Director