NEW YORK — After 28 years in the men’s wear arena, Ron Chereskin is getting into the women’s game.

The way the designer sees it, dressing down doesn’t have to mean falling to pieces.

“People want to be casual, by they did it wrong. People are starting to understand casual can mean dressed up,” Chereskin said. “They don’t have to wear a T-shirt and whatever.”

By using such fabrics as stretch cotton sateen and yarn-dyed cotton, Chereskin’s debut women’s collection will feature day-into-evening pieces. A boatneck jersey top in an Asian floral print, a cotton canvas cargo skirt and a yarn-dyed, striped cotton button-down shirt are among the offerings. The first delivery for spring consists of athletic-inspired pieces such as a tracksuit in nonathletic fabrics.

“What’s happening with today’s lifestyle is people are wearing active-inspired sportswear to go to work,” Chereskin said. “I like the idea of more contemporary clothing in the better sportswear arena, which has been very traditional.”

Geared for women between the ages of 25 and 45, Chereskin’s collection will wholesale from $30 to $100. The line ships to department stores and specialty stores in January.

Chereskin’s collection is licensed to European Design Group. First-year projected wholesale volume is $5 million to $10 million, according to John Ward, president of European Design Group, which recently signed a licensing agreement to produce suits under the Perry Ellis and Perry Ellis Portfolio brands for spring.

As for the greatest difference between designing for men and women, Chereskin said, “There are so many wonderful fabrics you can use for women’s. Men’s wear is pretty limited. I plan to stay away from plaids.

“Of course, there’s also a lot more I can do with color than with men’s. There are a lot embellishment, embroidery, laces and things I’ve never used before.”

In addition to his signature men’s wear business, Chereskin designs Sport, Studio C by Chereskin and loungewear, as well as a home, bed and bath line.

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