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BRANCHING OUT: "We are totally thinking about doing women’s ready-to-wear. We’re looking at adding women’s coats and possibly trousers for fall 2014. In fact, we’ve already cut a women’s trouser,” E. Tautz creative director Patrick Grant told WWD. “We have actually done a lot of consulting for women’s tailoring in the past — on suiting for Christopher Kane and on shirts for The Kooples — but we want to do it properly.”
Grant has dipped his toe in the women’s market before — in 2010 when Alexa Chung and model Laura Bailey made personal requests for shirts — and he’s taking the plunge again next month, when he will launch a collection of women’s shirts. The four styles in 11 different versions were created in collaboration with Katie Hillier, Grant’s girlfriend and accessories designer.
“Katie had been pestering me to make women’s shirt’s for a while,” explained Grant of the inception of the new line. “It was very helpful to have a girl’s opinion. We dragged out lots of shirts and she tried them on, saying what she did and didn’t like about details, collars, cuffs and cloth. Then last year a women’s wear buyer from Isetan in Japan saw our men’s wear show and really liked the shirts — the quality, cut and cloth. She came to see us afterwards and asked us to make smaller versions for women. And, frankly, there are a lot of poorly made women’s shirts on the market and this is a simple thing that we could do to, in keeping with the E. Tautz DNA.”
Recent forays aside, the E.Tautz brand has a long history of outfitting women. “Back in its heyday, in the 19th century, when there was a store on Oxford Street, E. Tautz used to keep a women’s fitter,” Grant recounted. “We outfitted the Empress of Austria and the Queens of Naples and Spain with riding habits, and made shirts for other euro-aristos.”
E. Tautz’s shirts are available at Isetan in Tokyo now and will drop at The Shop at Bluebird and Matches in London in Feb. 2013, with prices from £180 to £380 ($285 to $602 at current exchange).