Raven Denim's Revival

Founded in New York in 2004, Raven Denim hit it big in the middle of the last decade with its trouser jean, called the Mackenzie. But that was six yea
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Founded in New York in 2004, Raven Denim hit it big in the middle of the last decade with its trouser jean, called the Mackenzie. But that was six yea
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Founded in New York in 2004, Raven Denim hit it big in the middle of the last decade with its trouser jean, called the Mackenzie. But that was six years ago, and denim trends change too quickly for a business to rely on one style.

That's why industry veteran Kris Park, who bought the company from its original owners in 2008, decided to pick up and move the operations to Los Angeles, and to hire Ya-el Torbati as creative director. Torbati, who co-founded the now-defunct Yanuk in 2002, then moved on to design and co-own Deener, has plenty of experience under her worn-in leather belt. It's just that this time around, she's reviving--not establishing--a brand.

Fall 2010 is Torbati's third season at Raven, and we think she's established a signature look. There's a pair of perfectly slouchy pleated denim pants, a plaid pegged-leg trouser, military-inspired carrot leg jeans, and flat wash skinny denim with detailing that evokes a band uniform.

While the design and production is done in Los Angeles, the look is very East Coast, and I have to say, very "un-denim" like. It's interesting that Torbati has spent most of her career in the medium, because her ideas cross over into contemporary apparel. The details--leather piping on a trouser, a high waist on an otherwise simple pleated skirt--are too good to ignore.