J Brand

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J Brand
Industry Fashion.
Founder Jeff Rudes
Headquarters Los Angeles, California
Products Women's Premium Denim, Men's Premium Denim, Ready-To-Wear
Number of employees
Parent Fast Retailing
Website jbrandjeans.com

J Brand was founded in 2005 in Los Angeles. At the brand’s first fittings, the designers renounced the relaxed fit that was mainstream at the time, and the first true skinny jean was born. Japanese retail giant Fast Retailing (owner of Uniqlo, Helmut Lang, and Theory, among others) purchased the majority of J Brand in 2012. [1]


J Brand was co-founded by Jeff Rudes in 2004[2] on the premise of creating the perfect fitting jean that was classic, sophisticated and timeless.[3] In 2005, J Brand officially launched at the Ron Herman Melrose Denim Bar in Los Angeles, California.[4]

Women's Premium Denim[edit]

At its inception, the company only offered women's premium denim to fill a market need for a fashion skinny.[5] Rudes filled the void with J Brand's 811 Skinny, and their minimalist, no embellishment take on this silhouette was an instant hit.[6] However, their most famous skinny is the Houlihan Cargo Pant, named for the M*A*S*H character Hot Lips Houlihan and originally perceived as a novelty item.[7] The novelty item ended up being a revolutionary piece as Frank Doroff, Vice Chairman of Bloomingdales department stores explained it was their "best selling pant", selling thousands.[7] J Brand sold more than 300,000 pairs.[8]


J Brand has actively worked with fashion designers such as Christopher Kane, Henry Duarte, Erdem, Meadham Kirchhoff, Peter Pilotto, Richard Nicoll, and Proenza Schouler.[9][10] In 2010, J Brand collaborated with Kane, Erdem, Kirchoff, Meadham and Nicoll to launch 5 x 5, and allowed each designer to create their vision of J Brand. Jeff Rudes, CEO, explained, "Our mission is to be a fashion leader that is making a difference; the project will help protect future young designers through the Centre for Fashion Enterprise, the London organisation that provides business guidance and mentoring for emerging fashion design talent".[9]

They have also worked with Creative Director Karl Templar and photographer Craig McDean for their Fall 2012, Spring 2013 and Fall 2013 ad campaigns.[11]

Acquisition by Fast Retailing[edit]

In late 2012, Fast Retailing, owners of Uniqlo, announced they had bought 80% of J Brand for $290MM to bolster their premium denim business.[12]


  1. ^ https://www.jbrandjeans.com/company-bio
  2. ^ "Jeff Rudes (FABB conference speaker profile)". Retrieved 3 October 2013. 
  3. ^ Imran, Amed. "CEO talk | Jeff Rudes". Business of Fashion. Retrieved 4 November 2013. 
  4. ^ Sanders, Lorraine (September 16, 2009). "Where the Skinny Jean Was Born (And How to Meet Her Maker)". 7x7 SF. Retrieved 2 October 2013. 
  5. ^ Hume, Marione. "J Brand Genie". http://www.afr.com/p/lifestyle/afrmagazine/brand_genie_YJAM1hTl6HZIS08JlRpstJ.  External link in |publisher= (help);
  6. ^ . WWD http://www.wwd.com/fashion-news/fashion-features/blue-plate-specials-jeans-mutations-578791?page=2. Retrieved 11 November 2013.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  7. ^ a b Horyn, Cathy (May 12, 2010). "Houlihan, Reporting for Duty". New York Times. Retrieved 4 November 2013. 
  8. ^ Hume, Marion. "J Brand Genie". afr.com. Retrieved 8 November 2013. 
  9. ^ a b "Brand Power". Vogue. Retrieved 8 November 2013. 
  10. ^ Phelan, Hayley. "Proenza Schouler and J Brand Make Denim To Die For!". Teen Vogue. Retrieved 8 November 2013. 
  11. ^ "J Brand Ad Campaigns". Vogue. Retrieved 11 November 2013. 
  12. ^ Inagaki, Kana. "Fast Retailing to buy 80% stake in J Brand". Market Watch. Retrieved 8 November 2013.