By  on July 16, 2009

Ginny Hilfiger hopes to drum up business in the bridge department.

The designer, who started her high-end Ginny H fashion brand in 2005, is getting into the bridge area with a new, lower-priced collection of knit and woven tops and casual day dresses. Carrying the same brand name as her signature line, the bridge collection will launch for resort after a small test for spring with the Neiman Marcus catalogue. Hilfiger said she is targeting high-end department and specialty stores such as Bloomingdale’s and Saks Fifth Avenue.

“With my high-end line, it’s been hard to get it off the ground because it’s so expensive,” Hilfiger said. “People love that I produce it in New York using European fabrics, but there isn’t a way to keep the prices low when you do that.”

So Hilfiger signed a partnership deal with Nexten Corp., a production company with offices in New York and factories in China, to handle all production and shipping for the bridge collection. Hilfiger still handles all sales and design of the new line which includes printed woven tunics, soft cotton T-shirts with pintucking and pleating details, cotton polo shirts, long sleeve crew neck tops, jackets and casual day dresses in bright colors like pink and yellow. The new collection wholesales from $26 for a knit T-shirt to $250 for a cropped leather jacket.

“I love that I am able to do a more affordable line in this economy,” Hilfiger said. “I still sell my higher-end line to select specialty stores and I have developed a nice custom business for my private clients, but now more people can find my designs accessible.”

Hilfiger started her label four years ago after working for her brother, Tommy Hilfiger, for 15 years. She launched Ginny H with her husband, Chris Mahl, with a small collection offering classifications such as dresses, suits, jackets and knits. The line is available at Bergdorf Goodman, as well as smaller specialty stores. The high-end collection wholesales from about $220 to $700.

Hilfiger said she expects to reach about $1 million in annual wholesale volume in the first year with the bridge line.

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