Meet The Person #24: Iu Franquesa (Companion Denim)

Today episode #24 of the topic Meet the Person with Iu Franquesa. This topic Meet the Person is about passionate people, people in the denim industry. In Meet the Person I will give you an insight into their life; who are they, what are they doing, what makes them so special, where are they working on, etc. etc.

This new episode of Meet the Person is with Iu Franquesa, founder of Companion Denim. Thanks for sharing your great denim story Iu!


Iu Franquesa

companion denim

  • Name: Iu Franquesa.
  • Living in village & country: Sabadell, Spain.
  • Age: 42 years.
  • Instagram ID: @Companiondenim.
  • Number of Instagram followers: 13.8K followers.
  • Website:
  • Daily work: Owner of the Companion Denim brand

Can you introduce yourself (who are you and what are you doing):

I am Iu Franquesa, 42 years old and father of two kids. I started Companion Denim in 2012, after working for years in the denim and apparel industry. After learned and experienced the fast fashion industry for years, I felt the need to start my own project rather than following someone else’s dream.

I have a background in textile and fashion design. I worked for different companies in Spain, where I worked very closely with factories and denim suppliers around the world. Besides Companion Denim, I am also a denim teacher at the ESDI design school, in my hometown.

How did you entered the denim industry:

My father used to have a washing house since I was a little kid. They washed Levi´s jeans for the European market. I used to hang around in the laundry for many years as a child and also worked there during some summer as a teenager.

companion denim

companion denim

companion denim

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The Companion Denim atelier.

Where are you the most proud of so far as it comes to your work:

The Companion project started in 2012 as an one man brand. Facing countless troubles and headaches, I have never given up on the objectives. Now, after 5 years, we are a small team of 7 people, committed to the quality and service as the very first day.

What’s the biggest denim trend(s) right now in your opnion:

I don´t really know…I’m not following too much denim trends out of curiosity. There is an unstoppable change in the way we produce and consume in terms of sustainability, responsible and ethical production, rather than fashionable and fast fashion. I believe, here is where the raw denim has a big role to play in that sustainable future of denim.

And what would be the next denim trend:

We’ve seen denim being explored in infinite ways. The possibilities that our beloved fabric offers are endless, but I understand that there’s a whole new world to innovate regarding technology applied to textiles.

companion denim

companion denim

companion denim

companion denim

companion denim

Lined Companion Denim jacket.

What’s your favorite denim brand(s):

I specially like the Shibui Japanese approach to denim, being the denim fabric as key element, and leaving the details to a background or even random. But there’s always something I admire from the different brands in the market.

Where is your inspiration coming from:

I find most of the inspiration within the denim itself. When looking and feeling the qualities by the different mills I try to make myself an idea of the overall look of the garment. I let the fabric guide me with the rest of the details, the style, the color thread, the details, and so on.

What’s your favorite denim item in your closet en why:

This is probably the Joel 01C, our first style realeased at Companion. It was launched in 2013, using fabric from, the now extincted, White Oak Cone Denim. I have strong emotional connection with that style as it meant our first steps with the brand, full of illusion and uncertainty.

companion denim

companion denim

Companion Denim Joel 01C jeans made of Cone Denim White Oak fabric.

What’s your favorite denim fit:

I like jeans to fit classical and balanced in the overall measures, not too skinny, but not too loose, not too low, not too high. “Walking the middle path” as the buddhist saying. I developed the Joel slim cut to fulfill my dreams. After these 5 years, we have improved and updated it many times already.

What’s your favorite denim city:

I am doubting between Amsterdam, New York and Tokyo.

Who’s your favorite denim designer:

There is a long list! I have a deep admiration for the big giants from the USA, those who took denim to where it is now. But also I admire many others who are taking that denim legacy and push it to new boundaries.

What do you think it’s the best invention in the denim industry:

I would say the rivets. These beautiful little metal parts are just what set denim apart from any other kind of garment.

companion denim

companion denim

companion denim

companion denim

companion denim

Companion Denim jeans with rivets.

Who’s your denim hero & why:

Levi Strauss. I wouldn’t be probably writing these lines without him.

What’s your favorite denim store:

I used to like the Duke shop, in Barcelona, but it sadly closed a couple years ago.

What are your ultimate denim accessories:

Dr. Martens brogue shoes in Oxblood color. It’s been 25 since I got my last pair of boots from Dr. Martens, and I was very excited to put my feet in them after so long!

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Worn in Companion Denim pair of jeans.

What’s your favorite inspiration quote:

“It always seems impossible until it’s done” by Nelson Mandela.

Who do you love to see in the next Meet the Person:

Piero Turk. (In fact Piero Turk joined this topic last year, read his story here.)

Read also the previous episodes of Meet the Person;

Meet the Person #1: Amy Leverton (Denim Dudes): here.

Meet the Person #2: Jacques Grosz (Kiliwatch store Paris): here.

Meet the Person #3: Guido Biondi (Roy Roger’s): here.

Meet the Person #4: Gerold Brenner (Designer, Trendforecaster): here.

Meet the Person #5: Leon Blok (Designer, tailor maker): here.

Meet the Person #6: Guido Kerssens (AMFI Amsterdam): here.

Meet the Person #7: James Veenhoff (Denim City, Jean School, Fronteer): here

Meet the Person #8: Moritz Fuchs (New Heritage Festival): here

Meet the Person #9: Christine Rucci (Godmother NYC): here

Meet the Person #10: Sean Gormley (Creative Director Wrangler E.M.E.A.): here.

Meet the Person #11: Piero Turk (Denim Designer): here.

Meet the Person #12: Peter Kats (Vice President Lee Jeans E.M.E.A.): here.

Meet the Person #13: Han Ates (founder of Blackhorse Lane Ateliers): here.

Meet the Person #14: Ben Viapiana (Bespoke Denim Tailor): here.

Meet the Person #15: Tony Tonnaer (founder Kings of Indigo): here.

Meet the Person #16: Maggy Tuijp (Denim Development at DENHAM the Jeanmaker): here.

Meet the Person #17: Nick Williams (Graphic Designer): here.

Meet the Person #18: Koen Tossijn: here.

Meet the Person #19: Sinem Celik (Denim Consultant): here.

Meet the Person #20: Stefano Angelico (Braves And Company): here.

Meet the Person #21: Simona Testucci (Peppino Peppino): here.

Meet the Person #22: Silvia Rancani (The Denim Window): here.

Meet the Person #23: Michael Kampe (Creative Director Lee Jeans): here.

Written by Wouter Munnichs
I'm the founder of Long John. Next to running this daily magazine, I'm working as a freelance denim specialist for the industry. Titled as 'Denim Influencer 2020' by Rivet 50. Celebrated my 10th anniversary with Long John in 2021.