Interview with Sold Out Founders

On Monday, I highlighted Sold Out NYC, my new collection of sweatshirts that I wear every. single. day… — they are just so easy, comfortable, and good looking! Today, we meet the gorgeous, smart, and talented co-founders Kiane and Kate. Take a look, and thank you Kiane and Kate — you are such empowering and inspirational women!!!

 

Kate and Kiane — and can we talk about how cool, hip, stylish and gorgeous they are? DAMN.

 

____

 

How did you come up with the concept of the brand?

 

I was producing a fashion event in the Hamptons and was lacking a basics brand to complete the mix. I hunted around but there was nothing that truly turned me on. I figured why not just create exactly what I wanted. I called Kate from the beach and casually asked if she “wanted to make some statement tees for an event”. She was all in and that escalated quickly. By the afternoon we had a domain, an insta account and a brand name. Kate is a creative director and I have a strategy consulting background – so it was never going to be just “making a few tees”.

 

Why the statements? Because we all need some positivity at this time in the world. We are both Aussies so by default, positivity is part of our DNA. Also, there could not be a more perfect time for woman to have a voice. We want them to feel proud of what they’re saying and look great while doing it.

 

What is the meaning of the name?

 

The name is an extension of the brand itself, a simple product truth.

 

We didn’t want to be driven by existing fashion seasons; we wanted the customers to drive the new product timing themselves. What we produce is deliberately limited edition, so once it’s Sold Out, it is time to move on to the next thing. In today’s landscape it works perfectly for us and for the customer – we can respond to change quickly, and they get to see lots of new and relevant product.

 

Limited edition.

 

I know that you two are great longtime friends — has it been hard or easy to work together? Who does what?

 

Obviously everyone has their moments, but there is almost nothing a laugh and a glass of wine can’t solve! In saying that, there are a few things that really help. First, we have almost perfectly complimentary skill sets so there is a natural division of labor. We implicitly know who will be doing what when we walk out of a meeting. Second (and oh so important), we have 100% trust in one another’s execution. Third, when we are together we are super focused. Given commitments to our families and other projects we know this is non-negotiable. Oh – and we are also absolutely not afraid to get our hands dirty. Plenty of people in the neighborhood have sighted us lugging mannequins to fashion events or hauling boxes of inventory. There is absolutely no room for preciousness – especially in the beginning.

 

Looks like the best job in the world!

 

In terms of the sweatshirts, how did you come up with the phrases on them? The fonts? The colors? What is the design process like?

 

It is certainly a process. The phrases come first. When this occurs there is absolutely wine and there is absolutely cheese. We start brainstorming and let it ruminate before we start to narrow down the list. Fonts and color come next –that’s the fun part, although still a process. It is definitely not quick and it evolves dramatically. We are both perfectionists. Kate once sent me a palette of about 15 pinks to choose from and she hadn’t slept thinking about it. I swear they were exactly the same!

 

Family and friends are incredible for feedback. We’ll often think we have come up with something brilliant, share it with a few friends and quickly realize – not so much. Befriend us and you are on the hook for multiple texted opinion requests. You have been warned!

 

A play on words.

 

You did tees first, now sweatshirts… what is the next product?

 

Oh how I wish we could tell you! We can’t give everything away.

 

Two celebrities in the perfect Sold Out NYC shirt after a spin class.

 

Who is your customer and how do they hear about you?

 

Our customer is a woman who is comfortable having a voice. She is equally stylish and passionate about comfort (we both live in tees and sweatshirts). She definitely has a sense of humor.

 

How to hear about it: Instagram will give you everything you need to know about the product and a very strong sense of our brand voice (follow us @soldout.nyc – it’s a laugh and hopefully even an occasional snort).

 

A must follow on instagram; colorful, playful, and inspirational.

 

What has been the biggest reward of starting the business together? The biggest challenge?

 

The biggest reward: how into it our kids are. They love feeling like there are a part of things. Stacking inventory, “designing” tees. My son’s current life goal is to save for a truck and be the Sold Out delivery guy.

 

The biggest challenge: time, it is always time. Luckily this business gives us total flexibility. We can go to the school play and put the kids to bed and do the work wherever it fits in between. I will admit though that Kate is a ferocious night owl and worker. A text asking for an opinion at 2am is absolutely not uncommon!

 

The perfect mixture of the Sold Out tee and some wide legged pants. Classy.

 

You are both mothers, how do you squeeze the business into your life? And will there be a kids’ capsule at some point?

 

With great difficulty and a really good attitude! We are both roll-up-our-sleeves kind of gals so we just get it done.

 

Kids’ capsule – yes, very much yes. Our kids are insisting on it. My daughter asked me if we can attempt to shrink an adult sweatshirt in the dryer for her.

 

What are your dreams for the company? Do you want to sell to boutique stores, department stores, or straight to the consumer?

 

The larger objective is to drive a successful, direct-to-consumer business, but we are never going to say no to a sensational wholesale opportunity.

 

As long as we continue to have fun and create a product that is resonating to women, we’re in it to win it.

 

Laura Brown, editor of InStyle in one of Sold Out NYC sweatshirts.

 

Which sweatshirt is your current favorite? And your favorite way to style them?

 

For me, Femme Féroce. I love the sentiment and am a sucker for red and navy. I love wearing that one tucked into slouchy leather pants with a red lip, a big earring and heels.

 

Kate loves Je Ne Sais Quoi. She rocks it with a sparkly skirt and heels or a sweatshirt / jeans / runners combo. It’s always killer.

 

The great new is that sweatshirts and t-shirts are no longer just that. There are no parameters these days for how they can be worn. Don’t be afraid to get creative.

 

____

Thank you SO much, Kate and Kiane. To shop their sweatshirts go here. To follow on instgram, go here.

 

 

 

Anika Yael Natori, aka, The Josie Girl

Blog Home Page

African Printed Overalls – Royal Native

My only purchase of the summer has been not *one* but *two* pairs of African printed overalls from Royal Native. They are so fun, vibrant, unique, and different.  I ordered one pair and loved them so much, that I immediately ordered a second. If they weren’t all currently sold out, I would order a third pair (a girl can’t have too many crazy pairs of overalls, can she?)

 

The yellow overalls. They are described as "THE SEXY TOMBOY piece de resistance in your wardrobe," and I couldn't agree more.

The yellow overalls. They are described as “THE SEXY TOMBOY piece de resistance in your wardrobe,” and I couldn’t agree more.

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Thanks to my mother-in-law’s company and industry, I have had the privilege of meeting and socializing with some of her amazing friends and colleagues. Jaqui Lividini is one of the most interesting- beautiful, elegant, ever-so-glamorous, always fashionable and chic, creative, and inspiring. Jaqui runs her firm, Lividini and Co, which is a brand strategy company and works closely with many high profile companies such as QVC, Ellen, Hudson Bay, and many more. She is smart, strong, fierce, sweet, and the most beautifully decked out lady I have ever seen. Anything she wears is perfection. I had the opportunity to do a quick fire interview with her, so take a look!

 

Jaqui.

Jaqui.

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Adidas in Paris

In 2014, it was hard to miss the fact that everyone Parisian was wearing Stan Smiths. And sure enough, six months after that, Stan Smiths overtook the USA. Now, Stan Smiths continue to kick a$$ in Paris, but as I learned on my trip to Paris last weekend, everyone is wearing the Adidas SuperStar shoes. So, trust me, order them NOW before they become impossible to find. Everyone rocked the look and made them look so hip and gorgeous. So do it NOW, go buy them.

 

Superstar

Superstar

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Llama Inn – Sunday Brunch

The perfect bite.

After our big celebration this past Saturday night, we went out to cure our hangover / adrenaline / socialization with a big brunch. My brother, Giora, who lives in Seattle and is always up to speed with pop culture and what is cool (way more than any other New Yorker I know) told me about a restaurant that he wanted to go to — Llama Inn, a new Peruvian restaurant in Williamsburg that has a lot of buzz about it.

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Brunch at Sadelle’s

One of our favorite Sunday family activities is to go downtown for early family brunch — no traffic, easy parking, and it makes us feel young, hip, and in the know (wishful thinking).  Even with a 6 and 3 year old in tow -> #HipstersEatBrunchAt9. Yesterday, we drove down to Soho to Sadelle’s, a new hip restaurant/Jewish deli run by Major Food Group (the people behind Dirty French, Carbonne and Parm) and ate ourselves silly. Highly recommend — the food, experience, service, ambiance — 5 stars from this family!

 

Beautiful flowers sprinkled throughout the room. At night, there are lots of candles (says a good friend of mine).

Beautiful flowers sprinkled throughout the room. At night, there are lots of candles (says a good friend of mine).

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Dimes Restaurant

Dimes has been on my list of places to eat for quite some time, not just because of its cool and hipster vibe, but also for its healthy (and colorful) menu. We recently ventured downtown (49 Canal Street) to this eclectic, health-concsious hippie dippy, hipster minimalist, holy cow delicious restaurant. I was in pig heaven  — so many healthy choices to choose from!

 

Dimes.

Dimes.

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Switchel – The New Hipster Drink

In my search for the best New York Kombucha (because I miss every day, my Humm Kombucha from Oregon), I came across “Switchel.” Switchel, originated in the Caribbean and popular in America in the 17th century, is the new ‘wellness’ drink on the east coast.  I bought a case (very hopeful that it would work out).  Love.

 

Up Mountain Switchel

Up Mountain Switchel

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Josie Natori RTW Spring 2016 Fashion Presentation

With New York Fashion Week in full swing, I was delighted to attend the Spring 2016 Josie Natori Fashion presentation yesterday. It was a striking, beautiful, breathtaking and unique experience. And as always, I am incredibly proud of and impressed by my talented mother-in-law and her whole design team. BRAVO for a fabulous production.  And BRAVO to the team for making the FRONT COVER of Women’s Wear Daily this morning!!!  Read the glowing review here.

 

The invitation.

The invitation.

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Little Circus

Totally biased, but I tend to think my kids are the cutest little munchkins in the world (#humblebrag) and people always ask me where I buy my clothes for them. EASIEST ANSWER EVER: Little Circus! Little Circus is an e-commerce site for kids clothes, toys, and gifts. It really has everything and anything that you want to buy for kids, and better yet, it is created, owned, and operated by my dear friend, Jenna Lonstein. Jenna is a hip, young, fashionable mother of two, who started this company several years ago. (Read on for a special promo code for Josie Girl readers!)

 

Jenna and her gorgeous family.

Jenna and her gorgeous family.

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Rachel Comey Culottes

Culottes are having a moment right now. Like a big moment. And because they feel so French and fancy free, I am in love.  I love wearing them with sneakers and pretending I live in Paris where I can roam the cobblestone streets with a baguette in my hand and un coup de champagne in the other. Alas, that is not my reality (schlepping to swimming lessons and hustling to tutoring is more the truth), but I still can “look” French. So Culottes are my new favorite pant.

 

So if I am going to try to look French, then I might as well a striped shirt, too. N'est pas? Mais OUI!

So if I am going to try to look French, then I might as well a striped shirt, too. N’est pas? Mais OUI!

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Currently Loving….April ’15

Spring is officially here! And although I have spent the entire winter moaning and groaning about the cold, I now have about 15 minutes of non-complaints before I start with the dissing and hating NYC weather once the humidity and heat start….which knowing New York could happen any minute! On top of loving Spring, here are other things that I am currently loving!

 

1. Ample Hills Ice Cream

 

Frozen custard.

Frozen custard.

 

Now that it is almost the marathon GULP SWEAT FREAK OUT PANIC WHAT OH WHAT AM I DOING (I leave on Thursday night for the marathon), I have been carbo loading every single day, which means eating pints upon pints of ice cream. And once you try Ample Hills Ice Cream, you just can’t go back to eating plain old regular ice cream. This stuff is the real stuff.  Click here for my full post.

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Men’s Fashion: Bonobos

Happy early Fashion Week!  The Josie Natori Fall ’15 show is at 10 AM this morning.  I’ll be recapping tomorrow, but check out Natori’s Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter for coverage all day.  Bonne chance!  On to today’s post….

 

Even though my husband is the son of a fashion designer, his wardrobe was far from fashionable when I first met him. Think oversized shirts, boxy suits, pleated shorts, and even worse…. baggy pants. I don’t like taking credit for much, but I definitely have had a positive influence on his wardrobe, with the biggest difference being that Ken now wears clothes that fit. You gotta love a man in some tight fitting pants!  Ken has improved his wardrobe with a number of different brands.  I did a post a few years ago on shirts, and the latest evolution has been casual pants from Bonobos.

 

Bonobos Guideshop

The Bonobo’s Guideshop, 45 W 25th Street, 5th Floor

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Zara Leopard Shoes

I am a huge fan of slip-on comfortable shoes that are hip and easy to walk in. And these Zara Leopard shoes check off the boxes. These flat leather ankle boots are made out of natural cowhide with elastic side panels and white rubber soles. They are quick to slip on, flat to run a marathon with, and a la mode en ce moment. I imagine that my Parisian Girl Crushes are wearing them now, too.

 

shoes

shoes

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Stan Smiths

Oh my god, Parisians are stylish. Every lady I saw on our recent 3 day trip to Paris, appeared to be the most chic, beautiful, elegant, and hip person ever. It didn’t matter if they had a pretty face or skin, but their clothes and the way they carried themselves was so a la mode and fashionable. Instead of looking at the buildings or monuments, my eyes were always focused on the people. Hands down, the best people watching city in the world. In any case, it came down to the Parisian styles. AND DAMN, those ladies know how to look good! They are truly my fashion icons. I don’t want to be like Gwyneth Paltrow, instead I want to be like the average Parisian woman.

French chicness.

French chicness. I want to be the girl with the rolled jeans, top bun, striped shirt, and bag. She is cute — just her BACK alone is cute.

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Josie Bedding

As the Josie Girl, I am so excited to about the recent launch of Josie Bedding! Natori has done its own bedding for the past several years, but now it is Josie‘s turn to shine. And it is sooooo coooool and soooooo fun! Boho! Bold! Bright! Color! Comfort! Divine!

Bright

Bam
Notice something different? To learn more about this bedding and to shop available pieces click the + symbol embedded in my pictures thanks to Shopping Cart Technologies. See this exciting new technology for influencers in action on The Publishers Website.

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Sabah Shoes

You know how it goes, you spot someone with killer shoes, so you approach them and ask them where they got them. (I am an introvert, but when it comes to wanting to know where something comes from, I make a bee line to find out the who-what-when-where-why!) So, in May, when I saw the cutest little Millennial walking uptown on Madison Avenue, I had to ask WHERE AND WHEN CAN I GET THOSE ON MY FEET? Turns out, this hip little 20 something year old works for a friend of mine, so I was instantly put in touch with the Sabah Dealer and placed my order. Look how deliciously, dreamy and comfy these shoes are. A MUST FOR EVERYONE NOW. But don’t tell too many people!

 

Shoes and their bag.

Shoes and their bag. The blueish purple is deep, colorful, neutral, versatile and practical at the same time.

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Wayuu Bags

On our Paris-Versary trip in June, my mother-in-law bought a bag for my 2 year-old daughter. It is the cutest, most colorful and fun little bag for a little girl. But it made me obsessed with finding an adult version of the same bag. So, I went on a mad woman hunt to find a different store with the same grown up version. Finally, after dragging my husband from store to store, I came across a bag very similar to my daughter’s…. And I knew I had to buy it right then and there.

Neon!

Neon!

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Josie Wildflower Bralette

‘Tis the season for hot weather clothing! No one wants to wear a wire during hot summer days, so this Josie Wild Flower bralette is the perfect solution.  It’s a non-constricting bra without too much fabric, and adds a pop of color and pizzazz to hot weather layering. It is the perfect blend of sweet and spirited –delicate, whimsical, fun, and colorful!

 

Sweet bralette

Sweet bralette

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Rod Lavers

Not sure what is happening, but I am reliving all my fashion trends from college. Overalls, tie dye, and now Rod Lavers. I used to wear Rod Lavers every single day in college. Literally — with dresses (yup, guilty), shorts (cute), and jeans (typical). And what do you know? On trend! Rod Lavers are back in action!

 

sneakers

Rainbow of sneakers (courtesy New York Times)

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bkr Water Bottle

Brag: I have been doing awesome at one of my New Year’s Resolutions! I am drinking more water! Granted, it is only week 3 of the New Year, but hey, you gotta start somewhere! I owe my increased water intake to my new, hip, fresh bottle. Who knew that having a new water bottle could make me drink more? As weird as it sounds, I swear it really is working!

Rainbow colors.

Rainbow colors.

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Maison Olga

The young French designers are my heroes: Roseanna, Isabel Marant, IRO, Vanessa Bruno, and now, Maison Olga.

Maison Olga

Technically Maison Olga is a combination of French and Italian designers… but it is now headquartered in Paris, so francais, it is! Maison Olga is a unique label that designs for free-spirited, modern women, aka the quintessential Josie Girl. The collections are refined androgyny with vintage styles.

hey girlfriend.

hey girlfriend.

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