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4 Jan

Beyond Music: Cult of Individuality Creates Recent Streams

Greater than 14 years after Cult of Individuality began shipping to stores, founder and inventive director Ron Poisson is constructing on the music culture that the brand personifies by leasing the lounge and performance space in its Garment Center offices.

When the three,500-square-foot space became available in 2021 at 260 West thirty ninth Street, he leased it and built it out for “an artist activation space.” The corporate was already accustomed to doing activations in its adjoining showroom and offices for 200-plus people. Stylists and musicians incessantly drop by to tug product, so Poisson is confident the audience is already in place for select rentals.

Having allowed MTV, VH1 and a number of musicians like Toosii to make use of the space, Poisson is renting the space for select events, which also provide a possibility for talent, influencers or whomever to create content, but in addition to envision out and wear products. Security, cleansing and beverages for the bar shall be the responsibility of those seeking to launch videos, offer VIP experiences, acoustic jams, meet and greets and to host other special events.

“My goal with this space is to also turn into a destination. So when all these artists come to town, they’re hitting their record label, SiriusXM they usually are also coming here,” Poisson said, adding that collaborations, friendships and business opportunities have sprung from among the special events.

Cult of Individuality will stage its Recent York Fashion Week show next month. The date and site haven’t yet been finalized.

A glimpse of the “Cult Lab” lounge space.

The showroom looks pretty standard but with racks of clothing, work tables and other work area. Behind one door is a lounge-like area with leather couches, a bar and staging equipped with drums and other music equipment. Earlier in his profession working for Mossimo and later Ocean Pacific, he grasped how each brands were built around a culture — browsing — and consumers’ geographical bases were irrelevant.

Cult of Individuality

The label offers gender-neutral styles.

Courtesy of Cult of Individuality

That have made him intent on constructing a community, lifestyle and philosophy with the “Cult” reference within the name, being not only a nod to the cult-like interest in denim, but more about individual expression. A part of the duvet band Fools for Kings, which plays in Long Island bars, he knows firsthand how music brings people together. Throughout the height of the pandemic, the band collaborated with Bad Wolf and other performers for select recordings.

Having generated about $20 million in sales last yr — a slight decline from 2021 due partially to factories temporarily shutting down in China — Cult of Individuality sees the select rentals as not only a revenue stream but a possibility to further the brand’s reach on several levels. The enterprise is true to the founder’s personal interests. The brand’s collaborations cross categories and have included jewelry, one with King Baby Studio and one other with SE Bikes, the oldest domestic made bike manufacturer.

Music ones are the main target now, as Cult of Individuality has created collaborative merchandise touting Bob Marley, the Sex Pistols and others. Upcoming ones are set for Def Leppard, Motley Crue and Guns N’ Roses. The latter’s members Slash and Duff have turn into friends of Poisson’s — ditto for Motley Crue’s Tommy Lee. Young rappers have taken notice of the brand more recently, Poisson said.

Together with the U.S., the brand is sold in Recent Zealand, Australia, the U.K., Poland and other countries. “When you have a look at the Black Friday and Cyber Monday analytics, the brick-and-mortar business hasn’t been that good. There’s not loads of money on the market, as individuals are settling back attempting to work out what they wish to do. We’re all in the identical situation. That is on each level whether it’s an independent specialty store, which is where our heavy lifting comes from. But we also sell Nordstrom and Saks Fifth Avenue,” Poisson said.

Ceaselessly visiting stores to put the product out and meet with accounts is important, Poisson said, Insisting the occasional email is not any strategy to try to construct a relationship with clients, the founder said he and his team are big on phoning them and catching up in-person. If sales goals aren’t met inside 60 days, there may be an exchange program for retailers to modify up their Cult of Individuality products. “That’s how now we have been capable of construct loads of long-lasting relationships and real estate. I would like to grow with our existing retailers.”

At different points through the years, Cult of Individuality used to supply women’s clothing and a children’s line. But the ladies’s business “got somewhat tough with all of the fast fashion. Zara, Uniqlo and H&M cannibalized loads of the ladies’s business. And the ladies’s premium denim business began to look the identical with similar disco-inspired fabrics,” he said, citing Seven For All Mankind, Paige and other brands.

Although the corporate now not designs a lady’s collection, its gender-neutral style — oversize ripped and embellished jean jackets and roomy sweatsuits — appeals to each genders. Women are at all times featured within the label’s photo shoots and TikTokers are helping to boost interest with women shoppers. With jackets retailing for $500 and $600, and jeans at $400, the corporate strives to avoid stereotypes in its branding, Poisson said.

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