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Chain Gang L.A. Has Denimheads in Stitches

Los Angeles’ already unparalleled denim scene just got a stitch more trendy.

Barneys’ Beverly Hills flagship store launched limited-time services by Chain Gang L.A., a group of seven L.A.-based chain-stitchers and embroiderers.

The group offers Barneys customers the option of customizing their clothes with custom patches and artwork.

Founded by Tommy D, Tul Jutargate and Ed Hernandez, Chain Gang is known for tapping inspiration from East L.A.’s car culture, and putting their personal spin on customization. The company even works out of a shared space with a motorcycle dealer.

“We come from a background of custom, vintage, and lowrider cars,” Tul Jutargate, one of the company’s founders, told Barneys. “Car clubs back in the ‘50s and ‘60s had their insignias or logos chain stitched on all their club jackets, vests, and shirts. We liked wearing it ourselves, so we started out stitching the stuff that we liked and catering to a lot of the clubs around Southern California and overseas with clients in Japan, Brazil, and in Europe.”

The Gang uses machines that date back from the 1800’s to the 1960’s, and freehand creations that Jutargate likens to calligraphy or drawing, allowing for more freedom and creativity in design.

“This type of embellishment never went away; it’s just that it’s getting popular again,” Jutargate told Barneys. “Everybody has their own style. You could just start chain stitching tomorrow, but as long as it’s true to your style, you can still be authentic.”

Chain Gang will be at the Beverly Hill’s Barneys’ flagship store until April 7.