NEW STRATEGIES: Contemporary label Me+Em, whose success was built off a pair of trousers, has launched its first concession in Selfridges this week. Located by Selfridges’ denim department, the concession is the fourth retail space the brand has opened since 2017.
Since its aggressive retail expansion, sales have increased 48 percent year-over-year, in the financial year ending January 2018 and sales have more than doubled over the past two years.
Its success can be chalked up to the label’s straightforward design ethos: to create flattering, functional and fashionable pieces that can transition from daywear to nightwear. Its most innovative piece to date has been the “transformable trousers” — a snap button to the side allows the wearer to shorten the garment without compromising style and silhouette.
Me+Em’s transformer trousers retail at 199 pounds while the rest of their trousers range retail from 129 pounds to 600 pounds for leather styles.
“There was this huge trend of having zippers on coats and jackets that allowed the customer to manipulate the garment and our design team ran with that concept. It’s as simple as adding buttons to adjust length or shortening the lining on a jacket so each piece can be personalized to the wearer without compromising design,” said Clare Hornby, founder of Me+Em.
The label’s design strategy is critical to its success. Instead of designing with seasons in mind, the label is designing for consumer cycles and releasing monthly drops, “to create the perfect solution for that moment in time,” Hornby said.
“We move from back-to-work in September through to essentials, knitwear and outerwear in October, into eveningwear for November and December. In the new year, we move onto loungewear and après-ski [a new line that the brand has introduced] in February,” she added.
On top of branching out with après-ski wear, which has been a hit with customers, the label is working on expanding its dress offering — key items include a green-and-black-striped maxidress and a half-zip polo shift dress.
“The new dress strategy around smart-casual and event style this year has proven to be a huge success, and therefore we’re looking to double sales in our dress category in 2019,” Hornby said.