Today's Designer Question & Answer is with Jeffrey Lubell, Creator & Owner of True Religion.
There are styles of this brand that carry us through any kind of situation in our lives. There is always the RIGHT pair of TR to fit our mood/situation. You can dress these jeans up and become a party queen/king, or you can dress them "down" and transmit your inner "rebel with(out) a cause". I am curious, how did you create such a megaglorious, world-wide known brand that really speaks to people, and I mean all kinds of people, be they the young kid that saves his pocket money for weeks to spend it on one pair of TRs, or the famous celeb superstar that we continually see wearing your jeans.
Q: How did you "invent" TR?
A: I wanted to launch my own brand of jeans that were comfortable, stylish and looked different from other premium denim labels. I didn't want to follow the trend, I wanted to create my own trend.
Q: Why True Religion, what were you thinking of when you chose this rather strong name for your brand?
A: There are many religions in the world, but there's only one real religion--and that's the people. And all the people in the world wear jeans.
Q: I have noted that lately you have diverged from your original style of producing 100% cotton, and now do most of your women's jeans with lots of stretch. Is there a reason for this?
A: I offer a variety of product to cater to the many different consumers, but I still offer rigid denim. It is more comfortable, it shapes to a woman's body and gets better the more you wear it.
Q: Also, I know that you are changing those back pockets that used to be such a trademark. You could identify a pair of TRs from far just by seeing those back pockets?
A: I will always continue to run the iconic back pockets but I want to evolve my brand and not be pigeon holed by the logo. You will see a variety of back pocket detailing and labels for upcoming seasons. This gives the consumer who has SO many pairs of my jeans, a new reason to buy.
Q: The same goes for these famous double stitches along the legs of your jeans, another trademark, usually done in 2 colors like orange and red, or just in white, very strong and visible white stitches along the seams...why are you changing these?
A: I still produce all iconic products. As a brand, we're simply evolving and offering newness to our customer. I'm creating new trends.
Q: Your ad campaign for S/S 2012 calls out for us not to conform, but to be rebelling. Seriously, can I call these jeans a "political statement"?
A: It is all about going back the mentality of the 1970's and Woodstock. The campaign alludes to the idea of anti-establishment, anti-money, making love, not war and having one "True Religion".
Q: On the other hand, your jeans seem to be much "cleaner" nowadays, much more subdued, so how does that convert into rebelliousness? I mean, rebellious for me is exactly what you did when you first started your company: ripped, torn, sandwashed and bleached? Or is my point of view "outdated"?
A: I have always offered clean denim. The consumer needs to be able to go from day to night and cleaner denim gives a dressier look.
Q: What are the first pair of jeans you remember?
A: Bobby, Johnny, Joey, Tony and Tommy.
Q: What have been your favorite pair of jeans that you have owned and why?
A: The first pairs of jeans I ever made--Joey, Johnny, Bobby, Tony and Tommy. To me it was like the Levi's 501, so perfect that I knew I would sell these jeans for the next 150 years.
Q: How many pairs of jeans do you currently own and which ones do you wear the most?
A: I own over 250 pairs of jeans. Skinny, boot, straight, flare, It depends on my mood that day.
Q: Who is your current favorite denim icon (male & female). I am thinking the person who has the most denim style?
A: Giselle Bündchen and Gabriel Aubry.
Q: Which person living or dead would you most like to see in a pair of your jeans?
A: James Dean and Steve McQueen.
Q: What are your biggest selling styles?
A: The original iconic styles.
Q: What essential jeans should every woman have in her wardrobe?
A: The ones that make her feel sexy.
Q: What styles are going to be big next season?
A: The Seventies inspired Love & Haight collection for women and the western inspired Snake Eyes collection for men.
Q: Which celebs are wearing your jeans?
A: Naomi Watts, Giselle Bündchen, Megan Fox, Kate Winslet, Anna Kournikova, Dwight Howard, Kobe Bryant, Blake Sheldon.
Q: Is there anything else you would like our readers to know?
A: I want to thank all of my consumers, from every walk of life, for loving and buying my jeans.