NEW YORK — Premium denim label Earnest Sewn is setting its sights on expansion after securing a new financial backer and putting together a management team.
An investment group led by Brian Cytrynbaum, owner of Majestic Mills, has made a "significant equity investment" in the brand and is looking to grow the wholesale business, expand product offerings and open signature stores at home and abroad. In 2007, Cytrynbaum's investment group acquired a stake in Link Theory Holdings Co., owner of the Theory, Helmut Lang and Rosner labels.
Michael Press took over as president last week from founder and designer Scott Morrison. Press is a denim-industry veteran who was most recently vice president of sales at Paige Premium Denim. He began his career in 1987 at Diesel and has worked with brands such as Big Star and AG Adriano Goldschmied.
Albert Sayegh has joined Earnest as chief financial officer, overseeing the consolidation of all operations at the brand's Meatpacking District headquarters here. Sayegh spent the last several years with a Montreal-based accounting firm and has a background in accounting and consulting with Canadian wholesale and retail companies. Melissa Freeman, most recently director of merchandising at Paige Premium Denim, has also joined the company and will serve in a similar capacity.
Morrison will continue to focus on design and will take on responsibility and oversight of the brand's retail expansion.
"Scott Morrison has been a pretty creative force in the premium denim market," said Press, referring to Morrison's early success in building Paper Denim & Cloth before venturing out on his own to launch Earnest.
Press said Morrison's pioneering spirit was not only evident in his design work but in his decision to be one of the first to set the company's roots in the Meatpacking District, which has since become a mecca for designer boutiques.
Press said Morrison's team had no lack of vision for the brand, but had trouble reaching its full potential without more investment and structured operations. Consequently, overhauling the company's internal operations will be another area of focus and one that Press believes will yield almost immediate results.
Press would not give specific sales figures, but said the current Earnest business is "in the eight-figure area." With the new management, fresh operations practices, a new in-stock program and more financial backing, Press believes Earnest will be among the top four or five women's premium denim brands within 12 to 18 months.
EXCLUSIVE: @tomford is opening its first-ever beauty store. The boutique, which opens November 20 in London’s Covent Gardens, was designed with the over-the-top glam Ford is known for. Read the full story on WWD.com, link in bio. #wwdbeauty #wwdnews (📷: Simon Wagner) #TomFordBeauty
New York-based DJ @harleyvnewton threw a party to celebrate the holiday collection of her dress and pajama line @hvn at the Ladurée Beverly Hills. It Girls @katebosworth, @rashidajones and more joined in on the fun, which included cocktails, croque monsieur sandwiches and a photo booth. #wwdfashion (📷: Owen Kolasinski/BFA.com)
For the holidays, @Burberry partnered with 20-year-old artist @blondeymccoy on a series of three outdoor murals in downtown Manhattan. The murals are McCoy’s interpretation of a Christmas eve party, the idea of charity and the spirit of family. His third mural, pictured here, is the most personal. The image depicts McCoy’s grandparents and father in London’s Trafalgar Square in the Seventies. “My work often features lots of sentimental objects.” #wwdeye
For spring 2018, designers applied bold colors and cartoonish motifs on everything from sneakers and belts to key chains. See all the top men’s accessories trends on WWD.com. #wwdtrends (📷: George Chinsee; Prop Styling by @rnasti; Market Editor: @luiscampuzano)
The @dior-sponsored @guggenheim international gala pre-party has a history of drawing cool-girl musical acts to serenade the crowd –– and last night was no exception. @haimtheband performed songs both new and old, and lured a star-studded audience with the likes of Rebecca Hall, Kate Mara, Mamoudou Athie and more. #wwdeye (📷: @lexieblacklock)
In a partnership between the @metopera and the @englishnationalopera, “Marnie” was born. The opera, with costumes sponsored by @mrporterlive, is an adaptation of the 1961 thriller by Winston Graham. Arianne Phillips, who created the costumes, is no rookie: She’s styled Madonna for her tours and created costumes for a myriad of films in the past. Read WWD’s interview with Phillips, where she talks about her inspiration for the opera’s costumes on WWD.com #wwdfashion
@barneysnyc took a different approach to their holiday windows this year. Instead of Christmas decor, Barneys tapped @thehaasbrothers to tell a story of positivity, gratitude and inclusivity via heartwarming silliness and humor. “It’s about kids and it’s about coming together and being family and loving each other,” said Simon Haas. #wwdfashion (📷: @joshuascottphoto)
Beauty influencer @kandeejohnson makes her foray into hair care with a collaboration with @ogx_beauty — making it the first time that OGX has teamed up for a product creation. The collab includes shampoos and conditioners in three scents. At 39 and a mom, Johnson is a different profile than the emerging social media stars, but is considered one of the pioneers of the digital beauty influencer world. Read WWD’s interview with her on wwd.com, including the strangest beauty product she’s ever tried #wwdbeauty