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WWD News: Denim Recycling Program Sets Guinness Record, DCoded Launches in Macy’s, Cookie Johnson Denim Line Designed for Curves, Reiss Launches 1971 Denim Label

Lot’s of WWD news today for the denim industry!

Denim Recycling Program Sets Guinness Record


From WWD ISSUE 08/13/2009

national-geographicWASHINGTON ??” National Geographic Kids Magazine, with the help of Cotton Incorporated??™s ???Cotton From Blue to Green??? campaign, established a Guinness world record on Wednesday for the most items of clothing collected for recycling. 

The magazine issued a call in its May issue to readers to collect used denim jeans, shirts, jackets and hats. Actor Ben Stiller donated the first pair of jeans to the effort as guest editor of the issue. 

The drive ended with one participant, nine-year-old Erek Hansen from Ohio, placing the final pair of jeans into an exhibit of the 33,088 items of clothing that were collected by individuals, families, Girl Scout and Boy Scout troops, school groups, churches and others. Hansen organized a denim drive in his school that netted nearly 1,700 pairs of jeans. 

The success of the denim drive ???attests to the civic-mindedness of today??™s children,??? said Paula Rosario, vice president of Cotton Incorporated Strategic Alliances. 

The clothes will be displayed as part of an art installation at Washington??™s Union Station until Aug. 27. After the exhibit closes, all the denim will be donated to Cotton Inc.??™s denim drive that turns recycled jeans into Ultra Touch Natural Cotton Fiber Insulation for use in restoring and rebuilding homes damaged by natural disasters. Enough items were donated to insulate 60 homes. 

According to Stuart Claxton of Guinness World Records, who verified the feat, the denim recycling project is not the first jeans-related record. Others include the biggest pair of jeans, which was 164 feet long, 118 feet wide and weighed one ton, and the most expensive jeans ever sold, a pair of original Levi??™s 501s from the 19th century that was sold through online bidding for $60,000, Claxton said.


DCoded Launches in Macy’s


From WWD ISSUE 08/13/2009

dcodedSuccess Apparel Inc. is launching a young men??™s brand called DCoded for spring, leveraging the wide-scale launch of the brand in the boys??™ market this fall. In both the young men??™s and boys??™ arenas, DCoded offers music-inspired collections that target surf and skate enthusiasts. 

???We saw a lack of freshness and newness in the boys??™ business, especially with the urban brands having slowed down so drastically. DCoded is an opportunity to fill that void,??? said Gila Goodman, president and chief executive officer of New York-based Success Apparel. 

The DCoded boys??™ line is launching for back-to-school this month in more than 575 Macy??™s doors, in addition to a number of Nordstrom units. The rock band Taking Back Sunday will perform in the children??™s department of Macy??™s Herald Square on Sunday afternoon at a launch event for the brand. 

dcoded2The new young men??™s component is being first shown to retailers this week, and is targeted to both department and specialty stores. 

DCoded was the brainchild of Jeff Korman, senior vice president of new development at Success Apparel, and Maria Hartley, vice president of design. The duo brought the project to fruition over the past eight months, after Korman joined the company in November. 

???It??™s pretty unheard of for Macy??™s to launch a brand on this kind of scale,??? noted Korman, an apparel industry veteran who previously worked at his father??™s now defunct but once prominent dress business, El Jay Jrs., and then the children??™s wear maker Star Ride Kids. ???Macy??™s originally wanted to start us out in a few test doors, but as we talked to them more and they saw the product, they really got behind it in a big way.??? 

Rob Smith, general merchandise manager for kids??™ and boys??™ at Macy??™s, said, ???DCoded is an exciting emerging brand for boys that complements their active and free-spirited lifestyle.??? 

Retail prices for the boys??™ line range from $24 for a T-shirt to $60 for a zippered fleece, with denim at $34 and woven shirts at $38. 

In the young men??™s collection, T-shirts run for about $30, zippered hoodies are $66, cardigans are $48 to $54 and denim is $38 to $40. 

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Cookie Johnson Denim Line Designed for Curves


From WWD ISSUE 08/13/2009

cookie-johnsonDALLAS ??” Michael Glasser, a denim veteran who cofounded Seven For All Mankind and Citizens of Humanity, was surprised when he saw curvy women break into tears after fitting into a pair of Cj by Cookie Johnson jeans, his latest venture in premium denim that fits waists from 24 to 38 inches. 

???I have seen the women start to cry and that was amazing,??? Glasser said. ???I had never seen it before and this is not just one. If she can find a style that fits her well, psychologically there is a change. She is overwhelmed. I can??™t believe this.??? 

He can thank Earleatha ???Cookie??? Johnson for that. The wife of basketball legend Magic Johnson was so demoralized by shopping for jeans that she contacted Glasser about making styles for fuller bodies. 

cookie-johnson2???I had a hard time finding jeans to fit me because I have a butt and thighs,??? said Johnson, who is 50 years old. ???I??™d try on 20 pairs of jeans and couldn??™t get them past my knees. After beating myself up, I realized this really isn??™t about me, it??™s the industry.??? 

Glasser was skeptical at first, but was swayed when Johnson described having to buy a size 31 pair of jeans despite her 29-inch waist. 

Forming a joint venture and hiring veteran Joie Rucker, who is also a partner with Glasser on the Rich & Skinny denim brand, as designer, the pair launched Cj by Cookie Johnson in Nordstrom as a small test in February. Two days after Johnson first visited a Nordstrom in February, the chain upped distribution from three stores to 25. Now distribution is at 74 doors, and Cj has also picked up Neiman Marcus and Bloomingdale??™s. 

???Customers are responding well to the line,??? said Anita Ortiz, national merchandise manager for the Individualist department at Nordstrom. ???It has all the styling and hallmarks of premium denim, and it??™s cut to fit a real woman??™s body. The point of difference is that most premium brands only fit up to a size 12 and Cj by Cookie Johnson fits up to size 18.??? 

The jeans are made of Japanese and Italian denim, and the top styles have been a slim boot cut, distressed boyfriend and snug legging. The brand also offers styles with straighter fits for women who want hip jeans that aren??™t low rise. The line retails for $145 to $198.

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Reiss Launches 1971 Denim Label


From WWD ISSUE 08/13/2009



LONDON ??” Reiss, one of the U.K.??™s most upscale brands, is taking a more relaxed direction this fall with its new denim line, Reiss 1971. 

The collection, which is made up of a mix of men??™s and women??™s denim jeans and separates, is part of brand director Andy Rogers??™ vision to reinvigorate the overall Reiss brand. 

???It??™s a more youthful silhouette, a bit more casual, but still that sexy, directional Reiss signature,??? Rogers said of the 1971 line. 

The women??™s collection comprises five denim fits, including high-waisted, straight-leg, a boyfriend slouch style and a high-waisted kick flare, which will be constants in the line across the seasons, along with pieces such as military-inspired jackets, a swing coat in a black-and-white vintage-inspired print, and pink-and-black zebra print knit sweaters. 

???As soon as you start [doing denim], the attitude comes from the shoes you??™re wearing, the jacket, the T-shirt,??? said Rogers, who, prior to joining Reiss, was store planning and visual director at Stella McCartney. 

Prices for the 1971 line ??” which run from $60 for a tank top to $580 for a coat ??” are slightly lower than Reiss??™ main collection, which run from $50 for a cotton vest to $775 for a leather jacket. But Rogers said the 1971 collection wasn??™t prompted by the economic climate. Instead, he said he wanted to ???give our customers a reason to buy.??? 

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–Nikki Cho Russo

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Posted Aug 13 2009 in Uncategorized
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