I can’t stress how important it is for a woman (or a man) to own a good set of basics. Now I’m not talking about stuff you can rock to the gym or wear lying around watching Kardashian marathons, eating snacks and getting stains all over them … no (not that I do that … okay maybe a little). I’m talking about quality basics you can look fantastic in whilst running errands that are also so versatile you can throw them on with a pair of skinnies, a great statement necklace, a pair of fierce stilettos and rock it out on the town. Not only that, but a good set of basics that lasts (and doesn’t become hard as a rock after a wash and shrinks down into something your Barbies could have worn … trust me, it happens to the best of us).
Finding the perfect white T is like finding a diamond in the rough. Call me the Goldie Locks of basics, what can I say. But it happened. I found a white T that was JUUUUUUST right and thy name was TOGGERY. They are based out of Philly (I’m a pinch biased), the garments are beyond soft, versatile, stylish … and LAST. Umm and hello, Lana Del Rey rocked TOGGERY on the cover of her new album. Clearly all of the cool girls know what’s up.
So when I got the opportunity to hang out with Kate D’Arcy and Alison Latta, the ladies behind TOGGERY, I only fell in the love with the brand that much more. It was so refreshing to hear designers be so passionate, not only about the brand, but about the quality of their product. I’ll stop babbling about how much I adore them and let you get to know TOGGERY, as well as Kate and Alison, a little better below. If you need me I’ll be rockin’ my cool girl white TOGGERY T around town.
Ps. Between you and I, make sure to check out one of my FAVE style sections, Shoppist on PhillyMag.com, on Monday for a little TOGGERY promo. But shh, you didn’t hear it from me.
1. Tell me a bit about how you both got into fashion. What inspired you?
K: I grew up in a retail business and after college I went back to night school for design. I’ve always been in fashion in one form or another so finding a career in the industry only seemed natural.
I’m inspired by personal style; I love people watching, especially fashion people watching. My favorite part of the job is seeing how people put their personal touch on the clothing we create.
A: Prior to TOGGERY I had been working in the Financial Services industry. I had always been in love with fashion, and would always pine over magazines such as Vogue, In Style and Harpers each month – even as a kid. TOGGERY was like the dream-career I never thought was even attainable. When I joined TOGGERY 2011, I began to realize how truly passionate I am about working in fashion.
2. Where can you purchase Toggery? Is it national or just in the Philly area?
You can buy TOGGERY online at www.toggerybrand .com or find us at a specialty store near you! We currently sell to 200 + specialty stores across the US, Canada and Japan. You can find TOGGERY at Fred Segal in California, United Arrows in Japan and more locally Knit Wit in Philadelphia.
3. How long has Toggery been around?
K: 2007 – 2010 I was doing TOGGERY as a side project at night and on the weekends. It started as something small that evolved into a lot more than I expected. During that time I acquired a vast knowledge of the industry as a whole from production and manufacturing to sales and marketing.
In 2011 TOGGERY sales really started to pick up and I realized I couldn’t do it on my own. It was at that time I approached Alison about working together and overseeing the financial end of the business.
4. Describe the woman that would wear Toggery.
K: She is your favorite person at a dinner party!
5. How did you both meet?
A: Kate & I actually met through mutual friends at a Phillies tailgate party in 2009. We all collectively stayed in touch due to the Philly network, and eventually paths crossed and we became friends and business partners! Interestingly, we met on the same day that Kate and her now husband met! It was certainly a day to remember (although for the life of me I cannot tell you who the Phillies played and what the score of the game was)!
K: Proudly made in the USA! From start to finish we create our goods working with expert production partners along the east coast. We knit our uber soft custom fabrics at Carolina knitting facilities and our remaining production and distribution takes place in eastern PA.
7. Out of all of your pieces, what would you say is the “go-to” piece for any woman?
A: A great fitting tee is crucial, specifically a TOGGERY short sleeve white v-neck tee.
8. Tell us a bit about your upcoming collection. Is there anything new we can expect?
K: We custom knit this amazing sweater for our F/W14 collection. The fabric has our trademark softness and it’s cut in silhouettes you’ll live in come fall!
9. Why would someone choose Toggery over another “basics” brand?
TOGGERY is your favorite tee. Our uber soft fabrics, precision cut fit and insane quality sets us apart from other ‘basics” brands. We give our customers more than their money’s worth through style and quality that lasts beyond a season.
10. Who do you both admire in the fashion industry? What inspires you in Philly?
A: I am inspired by Zac Posen. He’s an American designer (so I of course love that) who so remarkably understands how to design for a woman. Zac lets his fans follow him through the workday and shares some of his personal life with us, which really allows a follower to understand the hard work and emotion that goes into building a brand.
K: Sticking with the designer theme I’m going to say Isabel Marant. I really respect the brand and business she has built over the years. Her design aesthetic makes you feel like the ultimate cool girl and her brand is accessible without being saturated in the market place… that’s a hard balance to keep in this industry.