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Du Nord x Companion Denim collaboration jeans
A forgotten foundry somewhere in Milan, next to a monastery and opposite of a few espresso bars and bike shops.
Denim Boulevard, Milan, 2014.
My first encounter with Iu Franquesa, the founder and maker of the artisan denim brand Companion Denim from Sabadell, Barcelona.
One of the most humble persons I've ever met in the industry, strictly focused on crafting the best possible garment without any compromise.
At the time I was running an online blog dedicated to artisans, and having the chance to talk with Iu not only gave the blog some proper content but it also led to some exciting partnerships and even the release of the limited edition collaboration with Store Du Nord.
From retailer to creator
Opening up shop in 2019, I was extremely keen to have Companion Denim in the brand set-up and luckily Iu was open to this as well. Having visited his studio in Sabadell a few years ago and understanding his way of working better, I felt that a retail partnership would benefit both of us.
When I started out with The Western jeans by Companion, I never imagined it would be an instant success. Sure, the level of construction and details are superior compared to most raw denim brands but to see those puppies fly out of the shop within two weeks and resulting in almost monthly restocks was something I never expected to happen.
As the sales were giving me some food for thought, I started discussing some options with Iu for a possible collaboration in a small quantity. Thankfully Iu was very open for this idea and we quickly turned the idea into an actual project, which has seen the launch on September 16th.
The best of both worlds
Having spent almost 20 years in the more formal side of the fashion industry yet having an immense, deep love for indigo and raw denim, I was looking to co-create a pair of jeans that would have a clean, sophisticated style without compromising on the hardwearing details of rugged, raw denim workwear.
With Iu coming up with an insane slubby 14oz. denim that has various colour tones woven into it, we ventured into the world of hardware and threads as those details would be key in determining the overall style of the jeans.
I didn't want to develop a "fashion" jeans but something contemporary yet clean, and by opting for stealth black hardware on the buttons and rivets and having all the thread in indigo blue, we achieved just that! Along with the Companion Denim signature stitching on the back pocket in the same indigo blue, these special Du Nord x Companion Denim jeans are the fruit of two creative minds and reality has never looked so good!