By  on May 16, 2007

LOS ANGELES — Rodan vs Griffith, a locally manufactured men's and women's apparel brand launched last week, has opened its first retail location here.

The 1,400-square-foot space at 8207 West Third Street stocks the 12-piece men's line and 35-piece women's line, a combination of eclectic, tailored items and hip T-shirt dressing. Logo-less, loose printed dresses and cotton basics in black, gray and subdued blues hang against the stark white walls. Plain-pocket skinny jeans in three lengths and three washes are on display next to art books on mahogany counters. Retail prices range from $50 for T-shirts to $325 for dresses.

The retro chandelier and red and ivory carnations spelling out "SAVE" on the back wall keep the boutique from complete starkness. Co-owners Carol Rodan and Chris Griffith wanted to create a minimalist atmosphere to go with their clean line, which is influenced by understated Parisian designers like APC, Rick Owens and Vanessa Bruno.

"We tried to clean it up and simplify it," said Griffith, a former women's art director of Mossimo for Target and online art director of Urban Outfitters. "It's a graduate of the mainstream brands we learned from with slightly more exclusiveness and higher price points," she added, though there are trend-driven items such as a printed chiffon tulip dress with flutter sleeves and a ruffled hem.

Rodan's retail background includes visual merchandising and styling for Urban Outfitters, Ralph Lauren, Lucky Brand and Hollister.

The Pennsylvania natives met at the Tyler School of Art in Philadelphia, where they started a concept boutique in 1999 that lasted for a year. In the back room, they learned how to sew from friend and future "Project Runway" winner Jay McCarroll, whose pieces sold in the front.

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