We had the good fortune of connecting with John Cardenas and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi John, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting your business?
My thought process behind starting my own business was to create generational wealth for my children. I am a father of two boys and I want them to have financial freedom. My dad was the first entrepreneur I personally encountered. Our first business gave me hands on knowledge that is priceless. It made understand how hard things are and the value we brought to the table. So starting my own business was a way for me to make sure my kids are able to learn hands on and have an understanding of what it takes to run a successful business.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I would say what sets me apart is that I stick to fundamental denim washing. I am always excited about washing and bringing back sandblast to its golden era. I think what Has gotten me to where I am today professionally is my work ethic, all of my hard work shows, I am proud of all the bumps along the way. You have to make mistakes in order to learn from them and be able to adjust and move forward. I don’t think anything comes easy, you have to work hard in order to see your desired result. I have a slight advantage because of my history working with my dad. I still make mistakes and encounter different problems that are only solved as they occur. I think with all of the lessons, I have learned to believe in myself, never doubt my vision and keep going no matter how many bumps I’ve hit along the way. What I want others to know is that, Others don’t have to see or understand your vision, you just have to stick to what your gut tells you and don’t give up. I had a concept and started from the ground up. Our denim washes and silhouettes are created in house, our washes weren’t picked out of a book, we experimented with all elements in order to get our look.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
The first place I would take them is to Spaniard restaurant near the neighborhood I grew up in Queens, Cafe Salamanca. It’s an authentic Spaniard restaurant that isn’t heavily crowded but the food is amazing. After lunch I would then make my way to SoHo visit some stores. For dinner I’d make my way back to Queens for some Peruvian food at Pio Pio. If we’re looking to hang out at night we can either go downtown Manhattan or uptown Manhattan depending on the vibe we are looking for. There are a few nice lounges. Some sights to see would be World Trade Center memorial, Central Park, the MoMA, The High Line, sometimes just sitting at the park is intriguing, you”ll see some of the most interesting people from all corners of the world.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I would have to give a shout out to my mom Luz Campos and my dad Ruben Campos. They had an American dream. They migrated here at different times from Colombia and made things work. They never gave up on their dream and showed me to follow my dreams and taught me that anything is possible. My dad started from nothing, with hard work and dedication eventually was able to start our first brand Azzure Denim. He is a self taught denimologist if that’s even a word. I owe all my clothing industry knowledge to him. He showed me the ropes of becoming a great salesman as well as the ins and outs of designing denim, My mom is the voice reason, taught me to have morals, and be a man of my word.
Instagram: j_c_denim, cardenisdenim