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In LA, having the perfect leather jacket is an absolute necessity; witness the meteoric West Coast success of brands like IRO and Rag & Bone, whose black leather jackets have been fully assimilated into the fashion-forward crowd's list of must-haves. Enter the newest kid on the block, Loz Feliz-founded The Mighty Company, whose entrance onto the scene is heralded by an awesome lineup of beyond soft, playful leather jackets (and some fabulous non-leather jackets as well).
The launch collection includes four signature jacket silhouettes—The FBRC, The BKR, The BMBR, and The FRNG, all available for a limited run and retailing for $695-$995. The business model is based on transparency, and offering luxury goods in super high quality materials without the enormous cost that's typically passed on to the consumer. Now available to shop, you'll find the entire line at Curve and on The Mighty Company's e-commerce website.
We spoke exclusively to The Mighty Company's founder, Jessie Willner, whose doe-eyed countenance, model good looks, and mere 24 years of age makes the young entrepreneur that much more compelling. Read on to find out more about how she sources her epic leathers, what drives her company forward, and her favorite spots for a little retail therapy in LA.
What's your major design inspiration?
Since all of my background is in visual art and graphic design, I’ve hoarded thousands of art references and photographs over the years that inspire me. Inspiration for this collection spanned far and wide, but I drew specific vision from 17th century France, the brilliant colorful atmospheres of Post-Impressionism, 1950's Teddy Boys and 1960's wide-eyed ingénues.
How do you choose your materials?
Searching for and sourcing the materials for the collection was one of my favorite parts of building this brand. Since I wanted to reimagine classic jacket silhouettes in a unique way, the materials were my vehicle for that. I had all of these crazy color schemes in mind and wanted to bring them to life.
That’s when I found the renown French textile mill Malhia Kent. They are brilliant and I feel incredibly lucky to have worked with them. I ended up crafting all of the FBRC jackets in the collection from the gorgeous metallic tweeds they wove. Seeing those special fabrics come to life was such an amazing process. I produced them in limited quantities so they are more rare to the girls who end up in them.
For the leathers, I wanted to find ones of the softest and finest-quality so you never wanted to take them off. I ended up drumming them even further so they could achieve the most buttery texture possible. One of my favorite and more distinct leathers in the collection is a silver leather that was laser-cut into tiny scales, and as you wear your jacket more and more, they change and corrode to show distinct patterns of wear. I was also meticulous with the hardware selected for each style and custom made and engraved almost everything. I tried to hide little details in the construction for every customer to find as they live in the jacket.
What are some essentials in your closet?
A perfectly fitted white silk button-down, high-waisted jeans, metallic shoes; sounds funny, but actually about half of my shoes are silver or gold. From glitter-smothered '70s boots to my everyday silver Superga sneakers, my closet is invaded with sparkle. I also have a thing for collecting colorful and unusual pants, from dip-dye to unique silk prints. I’ve always been in the pursuit of the perfect jacket since its always the last layer of an outfit, which is what led me to design a jacket specific collection—so luckily I’ve got that covered now.
Favorite places to shop in LA?
Curve—beyond our own site, I wanted to launch exclusively with them, as Nevena Borissova has the best taste and amazing instinct. Just One Eye is also so cool and has the most insane art as an added perk. For vintage or thrifting, Wasteland is good and also all of the cool little vintage stores in Los Feliz stretching down to Sunset. Opening Ceremony always kills me—in the best way.
Any other up-and-coming LA designers you're loving right now?
I love Re/Done and practically live in their jeans. Sean Barron has been a great friend and has given me some of the best advice while I was starting this brand. I love Raquel Allegra. Reformation has blown up and I’ve been a fan of their business model and ideology for years. My friend Daniel Patrick is always creating really cool pieces and he just opened a great second LA store.