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Yummie by Heather Thomson Shapes Up

A lot is going on at the brand — a new president, a new patent and a new lawsuit.

NEW YORK — A lot is going on at the Yummie by Heather Thomson brand — a new president, a new patent and a new lawsuit.

This story first appeared in the November 6, 2013 issue of WWD.  Subscribe Today.

For starters, the brand — which was founded by Heather Thomson, a star of Bravo’s “The Real Housewives of New York” — has been granted a utility patent for a variety of shapewear designs, including the original three-panel shaping tanks that were launched in 2008. This is the first utility patent issued to Yummie in addition to the prior 11 design patents held by Thomson for her inventions.

In another development, Yummie has filed a second lawsuit against Spanx in the Federal District Court of New York for infringement of its utility patent. Earlier this year, Yummie filed a lawsuit against Spanx for infringement of several of its design patents. Both lawsuits seek to enjoin Spanx from selling its infringing tank tops and to award Yummie damages for the alleged knock-off tank tops Spanx has sold. Spanx in the past has denied the allegations.

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In the executive arena, Wendy Herman has been appointed to the new post of president of the company, effective immediately. Herman, who reports to Thomson, will lead the Yummie brand in its effort to further develop its presence in the U.S. and internationally, as well as enter into new product categories. Herman joined the Yummie by Heather Thomson brand in 2011 in a consulting role, in which she has partnered with management to develop and implement a strategic plan to grow the business through a number of channels, including category extensions and international distributions. Herman previously served as president of Fashion 360°, a boutique consulting firm specializing in fashion brands. Earlier, she served as vice president at Delta Galil Industries Ltd., where she launched the licensed Tommy Hilfiger and Lucky Brand intimates collections. Before that, Herman held the post of vice president of Calvin Klein Underwear for Women, a former division of Warnaco Inc.

Yummie is launching its first line of everyday shaping underwear, called Skinnies, which offers the benefits of a premium compression fabric that smooths the figure. The line is expected to generate retail sales of $10 million in 2015, and the company is poised to exceed $100 million in overall retail sales by the end of 2015, according to industry estimates.

The Skinnies collection for fall and holiday selling will feature three styles — the Ivy Thong, Eli Briefie and Lily Cheekie Boyshort — in a range of colors and sexy prints including black, nude and mink, as well as red and pink. Retailing for $18 each or two pairs for $30, the collection is available at department stores, specialty boutiques and the newly relaunched yummielife.com site. Sizes are XS to XL.

Thomson, who also serves as chief creative officer, said, “I designed the Skinnies collection as a foundation piece that offers a comfortable, ultrathin solution in an everyday panty. They are a true marriage of fashion and function where women can feel sexy and confident in Yummie, without a single panty line.”