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Quiksilver Women has been in stores for one year now, so we checked in with Steve and Kelly Ellingson at Class@ASR to see if there are any interesting insights from the brand's first sell-through cycle.
Steve is vice president of sales for Quiksilver women and his wife, Kelly, is one of the lead sales representatives.
The brand is sold in top tier surf accounts, and has been embraced by contemporary boutiques such as American Rag, Lizard Lounge and Atrium, and better department stores such as Bloomingdale's and Nordstrom.
Steve said Quiksilver Women has had a lot of success at boutiques and better department stores, but it took some time for the surf market to figure out the line and how it fit into the mix on the floor. Quiksilver Women is aimed at a more cosmopolitan young women than a typical surf industry junior's line.
"The look was more sophisticated, the price points were a little more aggressive," Steve said. "It took some time for the brand to be understood and accepted. Now, we are getting calls from more surf shops that want it."
Steve said Quiksilver Women has become more precise in its offering by lowering the SKU count, focusing on key categories, and tiering price points and product for different kinds of accounts.
Key categories thus far are dresses and knit and woven tops. Bottoms are starting to gain a little traction now.
Quiksilver women's knit tops range from about $38 to $58, and silk tops are approximately $68, jackets sell for about $118. Also new for spring is a small offering of specialty swim sets that sell for $84 to $88 with less construction and a more contemporary look than a typical junior's bathing suit.
Summer Rapp has been in charge of design for Quiksilver Women and is now also in charge of design for the younger Roxy brand. Steve and Kelly think that will be a good thing because Summer can ensure that there is a clear design vision for each brand instead of each brand doing its own thing and sometimes unwittingly overlapping.
The juniors market in general appears to be in a state of flux, and Steve thinks Quiksilver Women is well positioned to offer something new to mix.
"There appears to be a shift in the juniors market to age up," Steve said. "We feel we are ahead of the curve."