After years of running a successful women’s business at Alfred Dunner, president Peter Aresty made the leap into menswear with the launch of vintage motorcycle-inspired label CRWTH.
“I chose to launch CRWTH because I was not seeing what I had in my head out in the marketplace,” Aresty tells MR. “I wanted to be able to tell a story through the product. Lucky for us having all of our womenswear brands made the decision easier since we have the infrastructure to create almost anything we can dream up.”
Aresty notes that the inspiration behind the brand came from his love of vintage motorcycles, including the authentic style that came along with it. “This, combined with a love of histories’ rebels, such as Wild West gunslingers, the speed demons of Bonneville and mountain men searching for gold, brought CRWTH to life,” he adds.
“Every one of are garments has something to say,” maintains Aresty. “When you look at our prints, they can fool the eye. From a distance, they say one thing but change your perspective and it tells a different story. That is why I believe in subtlety and nuance. The CRWTH product it is not your typical stripes and flowers. It thrives on being unique.”
Best-selling items include sweaters and printed woven shirts. “These classifications give us a great opportunity to tell our story in a unique way,” says Aresty. “You see that with our Billy the Kid Cardigan and Bomber Babe printed shirt.” Retails range from $55 to $75 for T-shirts; $98 to $135 for wovens; $135 for flannels; $175 to $250 for sweaters; and $195 to $695 for outerwear.
The brand, which soft-launched in 2018, really started to take off just before the pandemic with the help of seasoned sales director Douglas Michael. With a solid footing of men’s specialty stores like Halls in Kansas City and Rothmans in New York, as well as premium placement at Macy’s “The Park”, the brand found its way through the pandemic.
“Covid was a difficult test,” says Aresty. “Our women’s brands lost many retailers through bankruptcy. That being said we have the financial wherewithal to forge ahead and continue to invest in our business. Because of the new energy and uniqueness of CRWTH it was able to exceed expectations with our retail partners.”
Now, the brand is focused on growth. For its spring/summer 2022 season, the brand is aiming to tell its story to a broader audience by expanding its distribution. “We are also looking ahead, adding the finishing touches on our fall 2022 line,” adds Aresty. “We will continue to evolve as we learn from our best sellers and listen to our clients, while we continue to develop the message of CRWTH.”