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May 17, 2011 11:48 AM

J.Crew Gets More Good Company with Nili Lotan

Nili Lotan is the latest designer to partner with J.Crew on the brand's "In Good Company" initiative. The Israeli-born designer joins Barbour, Saint James, Thomas Mason, MiH Jeans, Timex, Ray-Ban and Essie (to name only a few) retailing on...

Nili Lotan is the latest designer to partner with J.Crew on the brand's "In Good Company" initiative. The Israeli-born designer joins Barbour, Saint James, Thomas Mason, MiH Jeans, Timex, Ray-Ban and Essie (to name only a few) retailing on J.Crew's Web site and at five of the brand's flagship stores. BF J crew collection.png"A lot of people told me I should be meeting Mickey Drexler [Crew's chairman and chief executive] and telling Mickey he should meet me. And one day it got coordinated and he just showed up in my store," Lotan told WWD. "He was so excited. And to see someone who's around clothes all day and has been working with clothes for so long get so excited about your collection, it was the biggest compliment."

J.Crew's head of women's design Marissa Webb says the brand is always looking for new styles, interesting details, quality fabrics and a great story behind a collaboration, and they found this in Lotan.

"Nili is a great partnership for J. Crew because she takes classic styles and puts them into beautiful fabrications while sharing our aesthetic," said Webb. "She pushes the boundaries and it has been a great added layer to what we offer."

Her six piece collection ranges from $218 to $555 and three of the six pieces -- a striped linen sweater, striped bias-fly jeans and a white maxi shirtdress - have already moved fast online. The linen sweater sold out in three days and was already re-ordered by the brand, and the other two pieces received the, "This item has been very popular and has sold out" stamp on the site.

nilijcrewportrait.jpgLotan, who served in the Israeli Air Force before attending the Shenkar Fashion Institute in Tel Aviv, has managed to keep herself fairly under the radar, crediting a downtown aesthetic and lack of PR for her organic growth. But with the new collaboration the designer is poised to gain notoriety outside of the fashion industry.

"I think my Web site is five times as busy. And now it's not the usual customer - all of a sudden I have customers from Pennsylvania and Ohio, and a lot from Europe."

For her part, Webb confirmed that the success of the collaboration means you can see more NIli Lotan on jcrew.com next season. "We have selected new styles for fall and feel good about continuing our partnership. You will have to wait and see..."

Nili Lotan for J.Crew is available at jcrew.com and at the following J.Crew locations: SoHo, Madison Avenue, Lower Fifth Avenue, Hamptons and San Francisco.
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