Ever since Cynthia Rowley introduced her now famous wetsuit-swimsuit hybrids in 2012, they’ve been a favorite among the fashion crowd. Now even more beachgoers will be able to wear them this summer, as the brand launched its swimwear collection in extended sizes for the first time.
Available online at 11 Honoré, CoEdition, and the brand’s website and brick-and-mortar stores, Rowley’s debut plus-size collection includes the high-performance suits in a mix of bright color-blocked patterns and sleek animal prints. The styles are available in sizes X through 3X, with prices ranging from $145 to $265.
“Swimwear, swim, and surf [are] so much a part of our brand DNA that it seemed really natural for us to extend with that category,” the designer tells Glamour of her decision to launch swim in plus sizes—a first for her label. “Fit and comfort and functionality are of the utmost importance already [in our swim]. Being able to then offer that in a broader range of sizes was really organic [for us].”
11 Honoré approached the brand about developing this swim capsule; CoEdition, which launched earlier this month, followed soon after. “We really felt like they were great partners and experts in the category, and [that] we were able to learn from them,” Rowley says of 11 Honoré. “It felt like they could hold our hand through the process a little bit…. There are a lot of nuances in the fit that I think would have taken us longer [to do on our own].”
Like the core swim collection that shoppers know and love, Rowley’s extended size offerings are made with neoprene fabrics that are incredibly function as well as incredibly cool-looking. “What we’re showing on the runway, what’s in our collection, what’s on vogue.com, is the exact same thing that we’re offering,” she says. “We didn’t do anything special—it wasn’t like, ‘Oh, this is for you and this is for you.’ It’s exactly what we’re showing, [but in] extended sizes.”
“We entered in the category that we felt [we had the] most expertise in,” Rowley says of her first-ever extended size collection. And there’s more to come: She teases “casual, beachy dresses that work as cover-ups” that’ll be part of a Resort 2018 drop this summer.
Though size-inclusive beachwear is all that’s in the books for now, Rowley says she’d like to expand other parts of her collection: “We would love to do ready-to-wear, active, fitness… but to enter thoughtfully and learn more.” That’s where partners like 11 Honoré and CoEdition come in. “We’re all sort of doing this together, and it’s exciting to be part of the launch of these sites,” she tells us. “I think as we grow and as they grow, we’ll be able to roll out more categories.”
Rowley is eager to hear how customers respond to the collection—and what they’d like to see Cynthia Rowley make in extended sizes next.
“As a women designer, it’s really important to be listening to what our women want,” she says.
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