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How Robin’s Jeans Became a Cult Classic in Denim

It’s often hard to stand out in a sea of indigo, but Robin’s Jeans has done just that. Since launching in 2005, the Los Angeles–based brand has become renowned for its innovative washes and glammed up denim, so much so that its name has even been dropped in hip-hop lyrics.

The company’s apparel and accessories for men, women and children mixes Western Americana and Native American motifs with influences from old cinema and biker style. And all these influences can be traced back to the brand’s founder, Robin Chretien. His passion for denim and the U.S., particularly Los Angeles, are sources of inspiration for the 62-year-old, French-native designer.

“For me, L.A. is a city where you make your dreams come true. The lifestyle is conducive to creativity. It’s also the capital of denim,” Chretien said. “This is the place where you want to make jeans and to have a jeans store.”

And that’s exactly what he’s done since moving to California in 1996. Once settled in L.A., Chretien immersed himself in the denim industry, quickly making his name known by working at notable brands, including as a designer at both Blue Cult and Hudson, before founding his own label.

Manufacturing in the U.S. is part of the allure for Chretien. “I believe in the quality of the denim with the Made in U.S.A. label. I manufacture in the U.S.A. for the respect of the quality and craftsmanship of production here,” he said.

Robin’s Jeans are marked with a signature wing motif—both a symbol of Chretien’s passion for hitting America’s wide open roads on his motorcycle and his love for the City of Angels. The wings are embroidered on the coin pocket and back pocket of jeans, and decorate other items in his collection, including T-shirts, hats and jackets. A gold wing keychain is attached to every pair of jeans.

Today, the brand has become a cult classic, with 10 retail stores in some of the top shopping destinations in the U.S., and has a commanding online presence with its website.