WOOLRICH GOES RUGGED
NEW YORK — Outerwear and sportswear maker Woolrich is seeking to move away from its department-store-targeted image toward one geared to outdoor enthusiasts.
To help achieve that goal, they have hired Paula Kosmatka as design director for its sportswear and outerwear. In this new post, Kosmatka will lead a team of eight designers and report to Todd Yates, vice president of sales and product design.
“They’re going back to their roots as an out-
door clothing company,” Kosmatka said. “Woolrich will have a more rugged flavor as opposed to a department store flavor.”
Executives are focusing the resource to outdoor specialty stores like REI, which has picked up the line, and Eastern Mountain Sports.
Kosmatka joined Woolrich a year ago as a freelance outerwear designer, she said. Prior to Woolrich, she designed for Lands’ End, Fila Outdoor & Winter Sports and Marmot Mountain.
An avid outdoor sports enthusiast who spends her free time backpacking, trailriding and hiking, Kosmatka grew up in Wyoming and spent most of her life in Colorado and Montana. “I’m the customer we’re targeting,” she said. “I’m designing for myself.”
Woolrich also announced the appointment of Kevin Ashcraft as sportswear
merchandising manager for men’s. Before joining Woolrich, he was the men’s wear buyer for Beallis Department Store in Bradenton, Fla.