The German legwear company gave regional buyers a glimpse of Hudson, its younger-skewing brand, during the August market, and is now ready to take the line nationwide.
Founded in 1926, Hudson was a New York-based company that manufactured legwear, dresses and knits. In the Forties, the production was moved to Germany, where it attracted the interest of Kunert, which acquired the firm in 1978.
“Whereas Kunert is a more conservative brand focused on comfort and traditional classical styling, Hudson is the opposite,” said Ernst Lange, president of L’s Wear N.Y, which distributes Kunert Legwear in the U.S. “Its main focus is the age group from 20 to 50; Kunert’s is 30 to 60. Hudson is a casual brand, it doesn’t offer styles for occasion, and only some business casual.”
For the U.S., the line now centers around 60 fashion and 30 basic styles, from socks and tights to sheers. For spring, Hudson is offering a large assortment of black, white and red tights, lace and crochet knits, open work and a range of cotton lightweight socks with American themes. Also on tap are camouflage tights, arm warmers and leg warmers in knitted cotton and wool blends or lace, which are sold at retail in a pack for $9.95.
“It’s Kunert’s fashion-forward line at moderate prices,” said Lange.
Wholesale prices range between $2 and $7, for distribution in moderate specialty and department stores.
“In its first season, the line was mainly distributed in specialty stores, but for 2002, we expect to expand this with department store business,” Lange said.
Even though business has been tough over the past few months, Lange, who declined to give sales projections, said the company expects a strong spring season for the product, with hopes to double the number of doors this year to 300.