While Ralph Lauren is a worldwide icon within preppy clothing, the less accessible sub-brand RRL (pronounced “Double RL”) is something denim enthusiasts can truly appreciate. RRL offers American made selvage denim and lifestyle apparel including handmade belts, boots and bags. We took a quick look at this die hard American brand.
The brand is named after the cattle ranch of Ralph and Ricky Lauren in Ridgway Colorado, which has come to exemplify the soul of the brand. RRL is a tribute to the independent spirit of the untamed west and the early 20th century blue collar worker. It was founded in 1993 with the goal to create timeless wardrobe staples with the highest quality in execution. The foundation of the brand lies in authentic American made hand-finished selvage denim, military-grade chinos, tube-knit t-shirts, and flannels, along with handmade leather goods. The level of production and detailing on these styles is truly amazing using only the finest custom sourced fabrics to create an authentic archive look.
An important part of the collection are the jeans. RRL offer their jeans in five different fits ranging from slim fit to buckle back. Most notably is the ‘Low Straight’ with a medium rise and slim slightly tapered legs. Each jean is available in rigid, one washed and hand-distressed and repaired finishes. Until recently the denim was sourced from a Japanese mill in Okayama, but from this year they switched to a 15.5 oz. sanforised denim Cone denim, which was developed exclusively for RRL. The long-fiber cotton yarn is ring-spun, creating natural inconsistent slubs, and then rope-dyed in several indigo baths giving it a deep blue colour. All the jeans have chain stitched waistbands and hems and the patch is made from rough out leather with a nice understated branded RRL logo.
The exclusivity RRL is preserved with the brand solely being sold in a couple of dozen retail outlets around the world including hand picked multi-brand stores and meticulously merchandised mono-brand stores (as above), and the only place you can buy it online is through the main Ralph Lauren website.
Words and research: Jarno Sikken.