Chriselle Lim is getting into the apparel game.
The superinfluencer has teamed with contemporary clothing brand J.O.A. on a 23-style ready-to-wear collection, Chriselle x J.O.A. The line, which will be sold exclusively at Nordstrom, will enter 40 doors across the U.S. and Canada and launch on nordstrom.com on March 15. The selection of versatile dresses, jumpsuits, tops and blazers — several of which can be worn in multiple ways — ranges in price from $59 to $124.
This is the first design collaboration for Lim, who called it a “waiting game on my end to find the right partner.”
“I’m always trying to shop for myself. It’s important for me to purchase things, especially with what I do. When you’re buying things on your own with your own money, you’re very conscious about what you’re spending, from quality to price point,” said Lim, pointing out that J.O.A. is a brand she discovered at Nordstrom about a year-and-a-half ago and has been buying ever since. “I felt comfortable with the price point [J.O.A.’s] and I felt satisfied with the quality. You never know when you shop online.”
In addition to being heavily involved in the design process — due to close proximity, she was able to work closely with the downtown Loa Angeles-based brand — making sure that the pieces were versatile was top-of-mind. Several trips to Rome last year inspired a “Roman Holiday” collection (as did the movie), which has a color palette of cream, gold, yellow, dusty pink and sage green.
“I started my career on YouTube with tutorials on how to wear one piece in many different ways. It’s how I started my channel, and to this day [the Transformations series is] one of our most popular videos. I wanted women to get a bang for their buck,” she said.
For example, a $59 wrap top with straps can either be tied at the front, tied over the shoulder to create a cap sleeve, tied in the back to look off-the-shoulder or even tucked in to transform into a tube top. There is also the Patina Trench Dress, $112, that according to Lim, looks like a trenchcoat when worn open and paired with jeans and a T-shirt, but closed becomes a “full-on A-line dress” that can be paired with heels.
The transition into product might seem like a departure from Lim’s core business, Cinc Studios, the creative studio she runs with business partner Lauren Fong — but that’s hardly the case. J.O.A. has actually enlisted Cinc Studios to support the project creatively with assets such as a fashion campaign, a film and other content. The only creative Cinc is not responsible for is the product shots for the line that will live on nordstrom.com’s e-commerce page.
“We’re able to offer a full package, including our services along with just me as creative director of the collection,” said Lim, who cofounded the venture with Fong, also Cinc Studios’ chief executive officer (Lim is creative director of Cinc Studios, too).
The studio, which officially opened for business in October, offers fashion, beauty and lifestyle brand services ranging from social strategy and social consulting to strategic creative direction, full-service production, look books, content for e-commerce sites and digital campaigns.
“Cinc Studios is still a business that we’re heavily active in and invested in growing. Because we had this great opportunity come up as we were building Cinc, we saw this as another opportunity — not just for myself as a brand, but as a way for Cinc Studios to get involved,” Lim continued.
For now, the collection is a one-off collaboration, but Lim is hopeful “this will turn into something bigger.” And given Nordstrom’s track record with successful influencer collaborations — Something Navy’s Arielle Charnas’ capsule collection last year was so successful that she just inked a deal with the retailer to create a fully realized brand — this could happen.