Meet The Person #32: Barry Emanuel (President Copen United)

Today episode #32 of the topic Meet the Person with Barry Emanuel. This topic, Meet the Person, is about people with passion, an unique story, people in the (denim) industry. In Meet the Person I will give you an insight into their life; who are they, what are they doing, what makes them so special, where are they working on, and so on.

This new episode of Meet the Person is with Barry Emanuel, the President/Principal of Copen United. Thanks for sharing your great story Barry!


Barry Emanuel

  • Name: Barry Emanuel.
  • Living in village & country: New York, USA.
  • Age: 78 years.
  • Instagram ID: @barryemanuel8675
  • Number of Instagram followers: 101 followers.
  • Website:
  • Daily work: President/Principal Copen United.

Can you introduce yourself (who are you and what are you doing) 

I’m the President of Copen United and based in New York and Hong Kong. Copen United is a global supplier of pocketing/waistbands and linings to the major (denim) brands throughout the world.

Read more about Copen United here and here.

Pocketing fabrics by Copen United Limited. Copen’s versatility and quality is reflected in their clients. They are working with some of the top-notch denim players within the industry, such as Levi’s, American Eagle, Abercrombie. VF Group, PVH, Ralph Lauren, Armani, Replay, Benetton, Lucky Brand Tommy Hilfiger, G-Star, CK, Denham, Kings Of Indigo, Pepe, True Religion, and RLP, Rag & Bone to name a few.

How did you entered the denim industry:

I have been in the textile industry since 1962. I have worked for 3 companies during that time, and they were all 3 in 1977!

July 1962 – Feb. 1977: M Lowenstein & Sons.

Feb. 1977 – Nov. 1977: West Point Pepperell.

Nov. 1977 – present: Copen United.

Where are you the most proud of so far as it comes to your work:

We were the first company in our industry to recognize the need for sustainable pocketing and lining. Seven years ago we partnered with Unifi to bring Repreve to the market in a major program for sustainable products. Today our Encore Collection is the stalking horse of the pocketing and lining industry. It represents approximately 50% of our volume, and still growing.

What’s the biggest denim trend(s) right now in your opnion:

Slim and Skinny fits. Rips and tears, and super stretch. Next to that, sustainable products in general.

And what would be the next denim trend:

More sustainable stuff. Boyfriend fits, high rise, slight stretch, and more straight legged jeans.

Where is your inspiration coming from:

International Market Place, and Tokyo and Amsterdam are special.

Fashion is always timely, it goes full circle and always comes back around.

Technology today is a big inspiration too!

What’s your favorite denim item in your closet en why:

I have a pair of Wrangler jeans that I bought on Sheplers Website, they were unwashed, and I sent them to my friends laundry in LA to custom wash them for me. The outcome is just beautiful!

Pair of Wrangler jeans from Barry Emanuel.

What’s your favorite denim fit:

Slim with a little tapered legs.

What’s your favorite denim city:

Tokyo. The Japanese not only have great products in the stores, they also wear it in the streets. They have a great fashion sense!

What do you think it’s the best invention in the denim industry:

From the beginning it has been Sanforization. I’m older than most in our industry so I remember how this really changed things. You finally could control shrinkage in this chameleon like product. Todays inventions are sustainability, technology, and of course ozone and lazer.

Who’s your denim hero & why:

Ralph Lauren. He’s a man who makes the worlds most beautiful and expensive clothing and he is always pictured wearing a pair of jeans, how great!

What’s your favorite denim store:

American Rag. I miss the day when there were boutique stores in every city with the latest jean fashions.

What are your ultimate denim accessories:

Bandanas, bandanas, and more bandanas! Today Copen United makes them customized for many of the greatest brands.

Bandanas made by Copen United.

What’s your favorite inspiration quote:

It all begins and ends with what you’re giving your customer; Product, Design, Price, Quality and Service.

Who do you love to see in the next Meet the Person:

Has to be: Kevin Bardsley, Managing Director Copen Europe.

Read the previous episodes of Meet the Person;

Meet the Person #1: Amy Leverton (Denim Dudes): here.

Meet the Person #2: Jacques Grosz (Kiliwatch store Paris): here.

Meet the Person #3: Guido Biondi (Roy Roger’s): here.

Meet the Person #4: Gerold Brenner (Designer, Trendforecaster): here.

Meet the Person #5: Leon Blok (Designer, tailor maker): here.

Meet the Person #6: Guido Kerssens (AMFI Amsterdam): here.

Meet the Person #7: James Veenhoff (Denim City, Jean School, Fronteer): here

Meet the Person #8: Moritz Fuchs (New Heritage Festival): here

Meet the Person #9: Christine Rucci (Godmother NYC): here

Meet the Person #10: Sean Gormley (Creative Director Wrangler E.M.E.A.): here.

Meet the Person #11: Piero Turk (Denim Designer): here.

Meet the Person #12: Peter Kats (Vice President Lee Jeans E.M.E.A.): here.

Meet the Person #13: Han Ates (founder of Blackhorse Lane Ateliers): here.

Meet the Person #14: Ben Viapiana (Bespoke Denim Tailor): here.

Meet the Person #15: Tony Tonnaer (founder Kings of Indigo): here.

Meet the Person #16: Maggy Tuijp (Denim Development at DENHAM the Jeanmaker): here.

Meet the Person #17: Nick Williams (Graphic Designer): here.

Meet the Person #18: Koen Tossijn: here.

Meet the Person #19: Sinem Celik (Denim Consultant): here.

Meet the Person #20: Stefano Angelico (Braves And Company): here.

Meet the Person #21: Simona Testucci (Peppino Peppino): here.

Meet the Person #22: Silvia Rancani (The Denim Window): here.

Meet the Person #23: Michael Kampe (Creative Director Lee Jeans): here.

Meet the Person #24: Iu Franquesa (Companion Denim): here.

Meet the Person #25: Haman Alimardani (Hamansutra): here.

Meet the Person #26: Kelly Harrington (Designer & Trend Forecaster): here.

Meet the Person #27: Marta Cellini (Designer & Fashion Consultant): here.

Meet the Person #28: Özgür Polat (Product Manager Amsterdenim): here.

Meet the Person #29: Emilie Casiez (Nigel Cabourn Woman Designer): here.

Meet the Person #30: Alessio Berto (Pattern Designer): here.

Meet The Person #31: Andrea Rosso (Creative Director Diesel License, Founder Of MYAR) here.

Written by Wouter Munnichs
I'm the founder of Long John. Next to running this daily magazine, I'm working as a freelance denim specialist for the industry. Titled as 'Denim Influencer 2020' by Rivet 50. Celebrated my 10th anniversary with Long John in 2021.