In the summer of 2005 I meet with Michael Silver and discussed his top issues to go with his Silver brand jeans. That summer we decided to work together on a commission based development of a top collection for Silver Jeans and 1921 Denim for the fall 2006 season.
Immediately I took on the project with excitement, energy and passion to deliver an amazing collection. In the fall of 2005 I hired a designer named Andrea Wong to assist with the collection development and design. Andrea and I started working with the Silver team on a development schedule, inspiration and theme story boards. For Silver Jeans we were advised that it was a price point collection that was sold in casual stores such as the Buckle. For 1921 Denim we were advised that it was a premium collection sold in better hand selected stores such as Kitson Boutique. I was also advised that this would be Silver’s 2nd attempt to add tops to their denim collection.
For Silver Jeans it would be basic but stylish cut and sew pieces made in Sheer Jersey, Slub Jersey, Pique, Terry, Fleece and Rip Stop in a Kraftwork (female) and Conscious Traveler (Male) theme. For 1921 Denim it would be natural indigo driven fabrics (Silk, Jersey and Poplin), washes and finishes in a Decadent Rebellion (Female) and Apocalyptic Rebellion (Male) theme.
After many meetings and our resources on hand I decided it would be best for Andrea and me to get on planes to start our research and development. I would look after Silver Jeans development in Mainland China and Andrea would look after 1921 denim developments in Turkey and India. Both of us got on planes for 2 weeks simultaneously in our respective regions.
We when returned we were happy with our results but had allot more work to do. We started by following up with fabric swatches, wash samples, pricing and production options. The next stage was to start designing the ideal silhouettes for each collection, then start on prototypes. For graphics we worked with the internal graphic designer at Silver Jeans and recruited our own. In addition to designing, developing and producing the collection we had to create our own garment specifications and size scale from scratch for all silhouettes.
Below are the design story boards that we created for the season, all story boards needed to be portable as they were taken across the country for meetings:
During the product development stage it was decided by senior management that they were not ready to proceed with the natural Indigo inspired 1921 Top Developments, below are some photos of the items that were canceled in the development stage.
I would like to make a point that these products were developed with the client in mind by scratch, including garment specifications, fabrics, washes, finishes, dyes, and decorations… allot of time, energy, and investment went into these developments.
It was later decided that three silhouettes from the 1921 men’s top developments would be moved to the Silver Jeans collection. Below is the sales catalogue that we (Andrea) created in Illustrator from scratch for the top collection:
Andrea and I flew to Winnipeg to give a presentation of the Fall 2006 season to all the sales staff and senior management. Prior to our departure I created a script for our presentation, in the presentation we shared the conversation, introduction, inspirations, themes, and silhouettes for the season. Our presentation went off without a hitch and thankfully we were applauded by all. The next stage was to take the collection to Las Vegas for the Magic Tradeshow. Andrea and I went to Las Vegas to meet and work with the team and start planning the Spring 2007 collection.
During the show we received press coverage from WWD, here is a link to the press coverage: Silver Jeans Adds on Tops