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A Banana Republic Collection Made in L.A.

DesignLiz Nunan, Gap Inc. bloggerComment

Thanks to a year-long partnership between Banana Republic and the Council of Fashion Designers of America, this holiday customers will have the opportunity to shop for a collection that not only supports an emerging, L.A.-based designer, but provides a special menswear capsule for unique and effortlessly cool pieces.

Starting December 6, customers in select stores can shop The Greg Lauren for Banana Republic menswear collection, which was created in close partnership with the Banana Republic design team and was designed, cut and sewn in Los Angeles. The capsule will include 16 pieces, which marry Lauren's iconic, utilitarian style with Banana Republic's classic American sportswear sensibility.

We asked Greg Lauren and Banana Republic's Michael Anderson a few questions about the collaboration, and this is what we learned:


BR's SVP of Design, Michael Anderson (left) and Fashion Designer Greg Lauren

How did this partnership come about?

Greg Lauren: The CFDA approached me to work with Banana Republic as the newest iteration of their ongoing partnership. The CFDA's mission of nurturing creative people is so important and I appreciate that an American heritage brand is supporting that mission.

I saw this as an amazing challenge and opportunity to bring a one-of-one production approach to a broader consumer base. Looking at how to take an artisanal brand and scale it is something I've been looking at in my own business, and this partnership was a great exercise in exploring that.

Michael Anderson: Working with CFDA allows us to support the fashion industry and creative talent. This program is a great way to help local American designers and manufacturers grow their businesses and broaden their visibility.

How and where are the pieces produced?

Greg Lauren: We spent a lot of time vetting to find just the right production partner for this project

We needed someone with the capabilities for scale but that would also be willing to spend time learning the specialty stitches and production techniques I use in my own business and that we wanted to use for this collection. The pieces are produced by TEG in Los Angeles.

What was it like working together on this collection?

Michael Anderson: It was a true collaboration and Greg was a great partner. We both learned a lot and worked outside our norms to create something very collaborative and unique. Greg shares the same passion for details and we had a great time marrying BR's signature style with his artistic approach. We are excited to bring this to our men's customer and see it as a great compliment to our current men's assortment of versatile, modern pieces.

Greg Lauren: We worked together every step of the way to execute a strong vision for the collection. We were able to stay true to the vision by keeping the collection tight and niche. I am really proud of the work we've done together and the product as a whole.