The flow of ideas between ready-to-wear and premium denim continues in the re-branding of Goldsign.
Owned by the same company that operates Citizens of Humanity and A Gold E, Huntington Park, Calif.-based Goldsign is relaunching next spring under creative director Karen Phelps. The 17 styles slated to be delivered to retailers in January fit with the industrywide trend of adapting rtw construction to denim fabrication. “With Goldsign, we wanted to take it one step further,” Phelps said.
The result is a face-lift to fabrics as well as the introduction of luxe trims, like nylon satin strips used as the waistband and hip panels on leggings.
Phelps also issues an unusual design dictum, laundering the fabric before the cut-and-sew process. She uses this technique on ultrawide leg jeans with clean pockets, cropped straight leg jeans, a relaxed jean jacket and oversize patch pockets on skinny jeans. The blue denim undergoes a transformation in the pre-wash to resemble blue wool.
“It’s something interesting and feels fresh and relevant. It gives a polish to denim,” she said.
To highlight the effort put into these pre-wash pieces, the names pay tribute to the Singer, Brother and Sharpe workhorses that have stitched clothes for decades. “We’ve taken old sewing machine names because there is so much work in them,” she said.
Phelps also offers two new skinny silhouettes that are aligned with Goldsign’s slimming aesthetic: Profit, which is a midrise ankle-length style, and Semi-fit, which is a high-rise slim straight model cropped inches above the ankle. She also updates the retro trend with additional first-time fits. Balloon is a fuller cut with a high-rise and a cropped leg, and Benefit is a relaxed straight leg.
Phelps knows her way around the denim industry. Prior to signing on as creative director for both Goldsign and the youth-oriented, less-expensive A Gold E last March, she designed denim for Calvin Klein Jeans, J. Crew, Gap’s international divisions and J Brand. She picks up the design mantle at Goldsign from Jerome Dahan, the founder of Citizens of Humanity, who acquired Goldsign from its founder Adriano Goldschmied in 2007.
She compartmentalizes her work for Goldsign and A Gold E. While A Gold E averages in price at $150 and sells to stores such as Nasty Gal and Urban Outfitters, Goldsign retails from $220 to $480 at Bergdorf Goodman, The Dreslyn, Shopbop.com, Rand and Statler, Harrods and Selfridges. With the relaunch, it also picks up new retail accounts like Alex Eagle in London and United Arrows in Japan.
Next fall, Phelps envisions an opportunity to build the line further. “We are looking at how we can broaden the collection,” she said, describing additions in fabrics, tops and other silhouettes as being “rooted in a denim aesthetic with a modern approach.”