Franklin and Gower is a prominent intersection on the way to the iconic Hollywood sign, but the name has now acquired a new cultural meaning. Though the symbolic address is home to some of the oldest studios in Hollywood, the name has also been adopted for a newly launched, LA-based label. Spearheaded by Eduardo Braniff and Christopher McCauley, Franklin + Gower is a mostly menswear line that offers more than 1,200 combinations of pants and shorts.
The duo took their shared interest in printed pants of the preppy Palm Beach-meets-bespoke variety and spun it into something distinctly Californian. Of the label’s own intersecting influences, Braniff explains: “There’s that in-between point of a well-dressed, well looked after man with a California sensibility”—it’s this happy crossroad that defines Franklin + Gower’s style.
The concept is relatively straightforward: choose a base fabric in two different cuts, then put your own character on display by mixing and matching a selection of tuxedo stripes (or more subtle) piping down the leg with a smattering of fantasy colors. Comparisons to Bonobos, which has also recently found success with a similar concept in the pant business, are inevitable, but Braniff insists that the difference is in the fundamental aesthetics. “We’re going for a much more expressive audience, much more colorful, targeting a guy that’s a little bit more comfortable with his own style and the clothes he wears,” he explained of the distinction.
Inasmuch as the collection demands a certain self-confidence, Franklin + Gower is also a sartorial story—it brings a made-to-order sensibility to every piece. The line promotes sharp tailoring and slim, asset-enhancing cuts in the tradition of old “tailoring partnerships,” as Braniff describes. “Men have gotten comfortable with tailoring. We’re bringing it to a broader space by allowing more of your personality to the story: our vision combined with our wearers’,” he adds. And with pants running under $200, the price point is as attractive as the creative impetus.
From unexpected colors that can be used for a playful wedding party, golf getup, cocktail attire or just casual wear, Franklin + Gower’s multi-functioning clothing is all about catering to the offbeat style predilections of “the LA man, about those cues that make a guy LA.”
It was only a matter of time before women began to covet the sweet tart colors and funky prints that characterize Franklin + Gower’s combination of California casual chic. It has responded with a few satiating styles available exclusively on the site, but at this rate there should be more options in the future. The label sells its full suite of offerings online, blurring the brick-and-mortar model by also distributing to specialty retailers such as Inno in Los Angeles and Massimo in New York’s meatpacking district.
This is one aesthetic intersection you’re not likely to forget.