New direct-to-consumer line Cut + Sew to offer tees and scented candles

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A look from Cut + Sew’s debut collection. (WWD)

Banking on the bust at American Apparel as well as consumer’s resistance to overpriced basics, Los Angeles-based branding executives Adam Drawas and Jennifer Walker have teamed with T-shirt designer Kari Weiner, former designer and owner of K Street NYC, to launch a new direct-to-consumer brand called Cut + Sew.

Debuting online Dec. 5 with crew neck, scoop and V-neck styles for women and a classic crew neck for men, plus three scented candles, the line aims to become the go-to for consumers seeking a high-quality, Made in L.A. cotton tees and scents to go with them. Retail prices range from $45 to $52. The launch palette consists of basic white, black and gray plus distressed “vintage” versions of each color.

Drawas and Weiner met while working at Louis Boston in the late Nineties. He went on to found a public relations outfit in New York, followed by one Los Angeles which he combined with Walker’s company two years ago. Meanhwhile, Weiner remained in New York and began the premium T-shirt label K Street NYC a decade ago.

“We understand that the market is saturated, and we wanted to bring a polished, accessibly priced product for consumers who outgrew American Apparel and didn’t want to spend $150 on James Perse or Cotton Citizen,” said Drawas. “We’re planning to drive our digital brand identity through that.”

Cut + Sew plans to introduce newness through collaborations early next year, and may partner with bricks-and-mortar retailers. “We’re focused on creating a web site with personality that speaks to our consumers’ lifestyle, but we’re being selective with retailers because it’s more about carving our own way to create new categories and products. We don’t have any seasonal boundaries in mind,” said Walker.

The partners are using tried-and-true celebrity seeding methods to get the product out there, though. Halle Berry, Kristen Stewart, Kate Hudson and Justin Bieber have all received product via their stylists, and Drawas said, “We have an aggressive strategy; you will see it after Dec. 5.”

While they aren’t giving first-year sales projections yet, Weiner said, “We’d love to become that staple for men, women and mini.”