Crescendo Apparel LLC, a new Chicago-based fashion label cut exclusively for women who struggle to find high-fashion clothing that fits off the rack, debuted its 2009 Fall/Winter collection last night. It was refreshing to see so much excitement for a fashion launch (especially in these times), and they certainly did it up big for this party.
Crescendo unveiled the new collection with a cocktail party, hosted in collaboration with media partner Michigan Avenue Magazine, Trumer Pils Beer and Step Up Women’s Network, a national non-profit dedicated to strengthening community resources for women and girls. This collection is designed specifically to fit and flatter women who—with small waists and full hips—rarely find stylish pants and skirts that fit without requiring alterations at the waist.
“After years of dressing-room angst, too many women start to believe they just aren’t made for high fashion,” says Kathryn McKechnie, Crescendo’s Founder and President. “But of course the truth is that high fashion isn’t made for most women. I founded Crescendo to change that.” Although most high-fashion labels tend to design for the 4percent of American women with narrow hips and “boyish” figures, the majority of women (64 percent*) fit the technical description of a classic “pear shape,” with significantly smaller waists than hips. Katheryn told me that next she is working on petite fashions, another often hard to fit audience!
“By designing silhouettes that forgive,” says Crescendo’s principal designer Kristen Burger, “we’re giving more women access to styles they love in theory but tend to avoid in reality.” For Crescendo, Burger solved one of the label’s most formidable design challenges—to create a flattering skinny jean—with The Charlotte Jean, a kinder, gentler version of the skinny "that’s every bit as rock star as the original."
The party ran from 6:30 on to 9:00pm and took on a big-event feeling, especially because of Kathryn's commitment to her philanthropy. A silent auction presented guests with the opportunity to bid on items. All proceeds will be directed to funding Step Up’s 2009 Midwest College Tour. As the exclusive sponsor of the four-day college tour for high-school girls from underserved communities, Crescendo is committed to raising and/or donating a total of $10,000.
Crescendo is currently sold by in-studio appointments, via exclusive trunk shows in boutiques and at private events hosted by Crescendo style consultants. To place an order or schedule an appointment to view the collection in the studio at 2150 S. Canalport, Suite 3A2, Chicago, visit crescendoapparel.
Photos: Steve Starr
and Second City Style