Olivine Gabbro launches partnership with Richards
A bold, bright orange exclamation mark on a glass plaque announces a new addition to Richards’ women’s clothing offerings.
Since late January, when Greenwich-based women’s fashion brand Olivine Gabbro closed its Greenwich Avenue storefront and formed a partnership with Mitchells stores, the brand’s designs have been on display on the second floor of Richards, a few blocks away.
Olivine Gabbro’s debut New York Fashion Week show last fall set off a nonstop flurry of activity for Grace Kang, Olivine Gabbro designer and creative director.
She hoped exposure gained from participating in one of the world’s premier fashion industry events would prompt company growth, she said at the time, and things seem to be falling into place as she hoped.
Her decision to work with Mitchells meant scaling up production from roughly 30 garments bi-weekly to around a 100, she said at her launch event in Richards Thursday. An in-house team once sufficed, but the growth led to her working with a manufacturing facility in Manhattan.
This year also brought her second New York Fashion Week appearance, in which she used only Greenwich moms who’ve been her clients as models, as well as another red carpet event where her designs will be under the spotlight. Harper’s Bazaar Executive Fashion and Beauty Editor Avril Graham will, for the second time, wear an Olivine Gabbro design to the Academy Awards on Sunday.
As if the designer wasn’t busy enough, she’s also planning a fashion show at Greenwich’s Brunswick School, where she will style the mother models while their young sons will be outfitted in Vineyard Vines and older males by Richards.
“We’re so lucky to have all this opportunity and exposure,” Kang said.
For years, Richards has been referring clients to Kang and her team at Olivine Gabbro, she said, and her business partner and aunt, Sue Neumann, said they’ve long admired Richards’ success. Thus, the budding relationship between the two family-owned brands seems like a natural fit, they said.
“They want to help build us and our brand,” Kang said, “which we’re really grateful for.”
How Mitchell stores will incorporate Olivine Gabbro’s designs is still in flux, but for now, Greenwich’s Richards hosts the brand’s core collection and offers its team space to meet with clients while Kang has a trunk show at the Mitchells in Westport. Her core collection also appears in Mitchells’ Wilkes in San Francisco with the opportunity to expand to more stores.
MBennett@greenwichtime.com, 203-625-4411; Twitter @Macaela_