By  on August 28, 2007

NEW YORK — In January, Neil Bieff had a media moment when he wardrobed New York State's first lady, Silda Spitzer, for her husband Eliot's inauguration as governor.

Now the New York designer, whose eveningwear and suit business has so far focused on trunk show and made-to-order businesses, wants to make his way into department stores. For spring, Bieff is launching a secondary ready-to-wear line, called NBF. While his custom collection wholesales from $1,300 to $2,500, NBF is priced from $700 to $1,100 wholesale.

"My couture line is so labor-intensive and mostly done in trunk shows and custom orders, which limits how much we can do," he said. "I'd like to have something we can just ship to stores in several sizes."

Bieff is no newcomer to the diffusion business. He once had the licensed Bieff Basics line, which was discontinued five years ago. NBF's 21 styles for spring predominantly feature party dresses that are shorter and younger in spirit than those from the main line, with short silk taffeta dresses featuring sequins in eye-popping colors. "It's got a fun, easy insouciance to it," Bieff said.

Bieff targets upscale department and specialty stores for this collection, and first-year projections are $1 million.

"I would like to develop it into a whole collection for a slightly different customer, a younger customer," he said.

load comments
blog comments powered by Disqus