Veronica Beard wants to get its ready-to-wear collection on the backs of more women.
For spring, the brand will begin offering extended sizes in about 20 percent of its collection, and for fall that number will grow to 75 percent. Previously, the sizing went from 0 to 12, and the company introduced sizes 00 to 14 for pre-fall 2018, 00 to 16 for resort 2019, and now with spring 2019, it is rolling out 00 to 24.
The extended sizing will be offered Feb. 11 on its web site, five freestanding stores, Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom and 11 Honoré.
”We have been talking about this for a couple of years now,” said Veronica Swanson Beard, founder and co-chief executive officer of Veronica Beard. “It all stems from Veronica and I are sisters-in-law, and we really look at this business like a sisterhood — the people who work for us, our team and a lot of dear friends…The whole thing is reaching all women through whatever we’re doing, whether it’s design, through our content, VBGB [Veronica Beard Gives Back]. We just felt we kept falling short for a lot of friends and people we love and admire. My mom couldn’t fit into our 12’s, and my cousin couldn’t fit into it. Veronica has friends that couldn’t. Why can’t all these people that we love wear Veronica Beard?”
Miele Beard, founder and co-ceo, said they’ve been working with Kedic Fashion Workshop, industry experts, which helped them implement best practices in pattern and grading for extended sizes. They’re also working with Katie Sturino from @the12ishstyle, a blog, who’s helping curate their product and shopping experience. She’s an influencer, who will model in the fall 2019 presentation.
“Katie has been teaching us a size 18 wants exactly what a size 4 wants. They just want it to fit right, and there’s a lot offered out there that isn’t a great fit or quality, and we’re excited about the opportunity to produce a collection that has incredible fit, incredible quality at a great price,” said Swanson Beard.
According to Sturino, “In my experience working with Veronica Beard they have been so eager to be inclusive. It’s very genuine and I’m so impressed with how much they want to do. Their approach to extending their size range has been really thoughtful, they truly want to understand the customer. I love being a part of this process, having my voice heard and representing all of the other women who are my size and other sizes who will now be invited to wear the collection as well. There is nothing like this — the style, the design quality, the price point — offered in extended sizes.”
Beard’s jeans will also be offered in extended sizes, starting with the Beverly flare. They’re also offering extended sizing for sweaters, the scuba jacket, and leggings. The company will start with a smaller assortment so it can do its research, and then expand it.
All of the company’s freestanding stores will offer extended sizing. Beard’s five stores are in New York City (2), Manhasset, N.Y., Dallas and Los Angeles. The company will open its sixth store in Palisades Village, Calif., on March 13. Another store at an undisclosed location will open in the spring. Internationally, Beard sells such retailers as Net-a-porter, Harvey Nichols, El Corte Inglés, and Mytheresa, but they won’t carry extended sizing.
The Beards expect to have plus-size models on the runway at their presentation Feb. 11.
As for other new ventures, Swanson Beard said, “We’re really focused on building out our jeans and shoe business. They’ve been super successful. There’s an awesome opportunity in our price point for footwear and jeans.”
“One day I want to extend the sizes of the shoes. My 6-foot daughter has an 11-and-a-half [foot size], and we only offer an 11 right now,” said Miele Beard.