The world of Dôen is growing. The Los Angeles-based direct-to-consumer e-commerce contemporary collection cofounded by sisters Katherine and Margaret Kleveland for spring 2016 is expanding its offer for fall. Specifically, with knitwear, a larger footwear selection and children’s wear.
For fall, the knit program, which launched with one style for spring, will expand to seven styles priced between $165 and $358 in cotton boucle and baby alpaca done in the label’s vintage coastal-inspired aesthetic.
Katherine and Margaret, the company’s chief creative officer and chief executive officer, respectively, launched Dôen with the mission to streamline their supply chain in order to hit approachable price points. Ready-to-wear prices range from $125 to $395. Both women worked at Dutch LLC, parent company of Joie, Current/Elliott and Equipment – Katherine as executive vice president of design and Margaret as director of operations and footwear development, before launching Dôen.
“For $358, you’re getting an ankle-length duster sweater in a chunky rib baby alpaca,” said Margaret. “It’s a lot of sweater for that price point.” They’re also working with a program set up through the Peruvian government to source for a women-run handknit operation. They’re launching a collection of antique lockets, footwear that includes moccasins and sandals and an increase in children’s styles, as they see young mother’s as a key customer base.
Aside from managing price through the supply chain, Dôen is focused on a for-women-by-women ethos. Katherine and Margaret refer to their business as a “women’s collective.” It is wholly owned and funded by its all-female founding members, including Hillary Tisch, Allie Furlotti, Hilary Walsh, Courtney Santry and Phoebe Dean. Dôen is committed to working with women-owned factories, domestically and abroad.
The company is very much in its infancy, but roughly six months in the Klevelands reported positive results. Declining to disclose specific sales figures, Katherine said, “We hit our four month projection in five weeks.”
“The direct-to-consumer high-end contemporary market is still a new frontier,” said Margaret. “It’s been incredible. We have a total direct line to the customer and customer service interaction. It’s directly informing us on how to move forward, whereas previously in the wholesale market [the system] has been so fractured and diluted.” With complete control over their sales channel, Dôen’s strategy is to continually roll out merchandise, while alerting the customer that quantities are limited, so they’re encouraged to check back.
Much of the publicity and strategic consumer engagement has been done through social media. “Watching people post in our clothes and tag us has been incredible,” said Margaret. “It’s like wildfire.”