Rachel Roy has many reasons to smile. Her fashion label has a new partner and now offers a plus-size “Curvy” option. This is great news for the plus size community. We’re always in search for brands that support plus shopping. The Rachel Roy plus size collection is available in sizes up to 24.
The Rachel Roy brand is relaunched it’s mainline and expanded into plus-size with her partnership with new parent company, Topson Downs. The contemporary Rachel Rachel Roy line had a 7-year exclusive deal with Macy’s which has ended. Besides adding a plus-size collection the relaunch expanded to include dresses, swimwear (currently not available in plus sizes) with plans to get into jewelry and home goods. As well as growing her wholesale distribution list to include Nordstrom and Lord & Taylor. The higher priced mainline Rachel Roy New York will be back in stores spring 2017.
Roy spoke on who her line is for. “It was created as a need that I had to look the same way at eight in the morning and eight at night,” said Roy of the aesthetic of her high-priced line. “Basically, it’s for working woman. If you’re not working, then it’s for women who have very full lives.”
Comparing her designer and contemporary brands, Roy said, “Rachel Roy is the bigger sister to Rachel Rachel Roy. She is at a point in her career where she can afford that price point. Everything can last in her wardrobe, whereas Rachel Rachel Roy can have more fun with prints and colors and take more chances.”
Rachel Rachel Roy opens at $39 and goes up to $460. The Rachel Roy collection will be positioned in the advanced contemporary neighborhood. Rachel described the Rachel Rachel Roy woman she’s designing for a curious and adventurous; she has a career, so she has the need to look professional, pulled-together, and polished. She’s the younger sister to Rachel Roy, so the price point is lower and more affordable. But who the customer is really the same throughout, despite the category.”
When asked about why she wants to offer plus size clothes now by Rachel answered “My customers have actually been asking me for years for plus-size, which we like to call ‘curvy.’ I think [the term] is just more modern and doesn’t sound as old-school. We wanted to do it for a long time and now just made sense.
“It’s not that it’s any different [than the regular line], it’s just that we got the fit right. And as soon as I could pull together the correct team to do that, we did it. I believe an in-house team has to work with it, hands on it, try it on, and ask questions until everyone’s comfortable. I mean, we have the designs, that’s not a problem. It’s just getting the correct fit, so it’s what people want to wear.”
Roy “I try everything on; everything in all of the collections I work on, in my size, or in a size up or a size down. You can still get a taste for what’s going right or wrong. I rely heavily on asking questions and then trying to solve them in a manner that I would want them to be solved for myself.”
Rachel has plus-size consultant which she found helpful. The team plus-sized help with fit, design, or what they thought might work best for that market. She said in the past 15 years is that she likes her fit models to be vocal and expects them to be part of the team the same way a seamstress or pattern maker is. Roy says she relies on that partnership with them.
Currently, the curvy options are only available in some designs. Rachel explained why she won’t expand the size range to all designs. “I don’t think every single piece needs to go; it’s kind of like shopping, right? When you’re shopping, whether online or in store, you pick and choose what works best for you. And I do feel that I would love to give as many options as possible, but in order to do things right, I would like to start out small and really capture my customers’ confidence and how it fits and makes her feel. Once I have that down and there is a nice ebb and flow to it, then extending would be the right choice. To really make an impact, I want to do it right, and then if the pieces make sense, absolutely.”
Rachel spoke on the lack of plus size chooses. “Well, I think that there’s a lack in general for larger-sized women to be able to look and feel the way they want. When I was pregnant, I experienced that; you just want to be able to get dressed, look smart, feel sexy, and go on with your day. And the effort that is needed to do that, I felt was effort spent in the wrong way. I’d rather put that effort towards my children, towards my work, towards myself in different areas; you don’t want to have to try that hard to get dressed. So I just think that there’s a lack of options. And I don’t know why there’s a lack, but there is.”
“The difference here,” said Roy, “is that we will have creative control over everything. One hundred percent.”
The size 14 to 24 collection is filled with the same bold colors, prints, and silhouettes we’ve come to expect from the Rachel Rachel Roy line with everything costing $179 or less. The line is now available online at RachelRoy.com, Macys.com, Nordstrom.com, and LordandTaylor.com as well as their brick and mortar stores.