Christie Murdoch wanted to keep her new clothing line “all in the family” – the tree family that is. With a retail store named Banyan Tree, “Figwood just seemed like a natural name extension” Murdoch said. A figwood is a member of the Banyan family which comes from the “banians,” or Hindu merchants who set up markets in the shade of these massive trees. Just like the “banians” Murdoch just might have it “made in the shade” with this line.
She spotted a void for arty, chic, limited-distribution fashion that was well made and irresistibly priced. Murdock launched the summer line of Figwood on June 5 in her store. If the reception by her guests was any gauge of Figwood’s future, its going to be bright.
True to its name, Figwood has a light organic feel to it. Soft jersey knits tops, feather cotton dresses in watercolor prints, organza like dresses with feminine detailing and arty sweaters as soft as spun cotton. The accessories mimic the spirit of the clothing. Delicate silver jewelry using the signature figwood leaf, colorful scarves, playful flower rings. All irresistibly priced.
The summer line has a lot of dresses and many are One Size fits most. That seems like an impossible formula but it really actually works. While the fit is generally smaller I saw it on all shapes and sizes and it just magically seemed to work. The tops sized S through L are in great colors with a variety of silhouettes.
Sara Sandsbury, Figwoods designer worked for Ann Klein and saw many a great design end up on the cutting room. So as soon as she had the opportunity she resurrected some of her favorites, reinterpreted them with Murdoch’s direction and in less than 3 months Figwood was born.
Murdoch is applying the same philosophy she uses in buying for her store to her wholesale line. Seek out the special, the unique, the different. She’s limiting Figwood to small unique, specialty boutiques with the same sensibility as the Banyan Tree.
This line is small, special, and freshly interesting. It has a sophistication and a quality that defies the price point. A boutique could easily bring it in as a margin builder with a 2.7 markup or higher. It’s a good addition for a better boutique that needs a lower end line with a distinctive point of view and good design.
Figwood is launching Fall 2010 to a small group of boutiques at the StyleMax show August 7-9 in Chicago. Immediate fall sweaters will be available for October delivery. Resort 2011 will also be shown. Don’t miss the chance to get in on the ground floor of this new line. The designs have been fit tested straight out of the dressing room and sell through performance has checked strongly at the Banyan Tree. That’s as risk free as you’ll find these days.
Pricepoint: Clothing $60-$120 at retail: Accessories $28-$90 at retail
Where to Get It:
2242 Professor Ave
Cleveland, OH, 44113
On Facebook at: Figwood Company