Sarah Ahmed, creative director of DL 1961, has expanded her universe with a new women’s and men’s denim collection called Warp + Weft, of which she’s founder and chief executive officer.
Warp + Weft will launch today as an online denim business at warpweftworld.com. All jeans and shorts retail for under $100.
“We believe denim should be democratized. Exorbitant prices don’t make sense for this core essential,” said Ahmed. She said she is dedicated to fair pricing, quality and fit and optimizing the customer experience. The jeans are designed in classic silhouettes free of trend-chasing details.
Select women’s sizes run from 0 to 24, and men’s ranges from 28 to 40. Both collections contain 64 stockkeeping units.
Ahmed said the jeans should take the customer throughout the day, without losing shape. “The weave is what makes it so unique,” she said. It’s a horizontal and vertical weave that forms the jeans.
Warp + Weft jeans are manufactured in Pakistan at a family-owned eco-friendly mill, which makes DL 1961 too. Each of the jeans, whether they are lightweight, medium-weight or heavy-weight, have a four-way stretch. The jeans are named after airports such as JFK (John F. Kennedy Airport), CDG (Charles de Gaulle Airport), PDX (Portland International Airport) and MXP (Malpensa Milan Airport). Jeans are $89 and $98 and shorts are $64.
Ahmed pointed out that 67 percent of women in the U.S. are size 14 or above, but the majority of designs are made in sizes 2 to 8. Therefore she wanted to make jeans that would fit everyone.
The company’s cotton and Lycra comes from the U.S., and dyes are sourced from Europe. The Pakistani mill has integrated sustainable practices such as solar panel energy and cutting-edge water filtration and purification to reduce the facility’s impact on the environment.
Waft + Weft jeans come in five core fits: Skinny, cropped boot, high-rise straight, regular boot and high-rise skinny. The JKF (skinny) and PDX (bootcut), for example, come in plus sizes and the JFK comes in petite. Men’s has four fits: Skinny, slim, tailored and straight. Styles include distressed, ripped, black, white, dark denim, light denim, shorts and overalls. She expects the men’s and women’s businesses to be equal in size.
Ahmed said the site will have a customer service team and expects many of the questions to be answered on the site. “We want the message from landing to un-boxing to be consistent,” she said.
Ahmed noted that her other business, DL 1961, is a high price point and more trend-focused than Warp + Weft.
The company isn’t interested in wholesaling the line, but has forged two partnerships with Stitch Fix, the online subscription business, and Dia & Co., an online plus-size subscription business. She plans a comprehensive advertising campaign in September, using train cars, newspapers and digital. While she declined to reveal a first-year sales projection, she said: “It’s aggressive. The market is there.”
More From WWD: