Before athleisure became the big thing in fashion, Anatomie had identified a niche for elevated performance basics. Now 15 years after launching, the Miami-based women’s brand has quietly created a $25 million business of comfortable everyday essentials with a direct-to-consumer focus and strong wholesale partners that include Neiman Marcus, the Ritz Carlton resorts and golf pro shops including Pebble Beach and Pinehurst.
Today, Anatomie will launch its first men’s wear collection, a capsule of nine pieces with a similar aesthetic that includes wrinkle-resistant and quick-dry jackets, blazers, T-shirts, button-down shirts and pants.
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Anatomie was founded by Kate Boyer, a Hungarian gymnast and coach, and her husband, bodybuilder Shawn Boyer, in 2006. Kate Boyer, chief executive officer, who also has an MBA in international trade, said the idea to create a brand came after she had a hard time finding clothes to fit her athletes. Her husband’s start in the business came about the same way — he was 240 pounds with a 32-inch waist — when he couldn’t find clothes to fit him and other athletic men. Both of them separately started creating clothes: private label collections for exclusive resorts in St. Barth for Kate Boyer and custom clothes in the U.S. for Shawn Boyer. And when they met in 2006, they joined forces.
Shawn Boyer, who taught himself to sew on an old Singer sewing machine he inherited from his grandmother, serves as creative director of the brand.
In 2015, they brought Tom Dietrich on board as president and chief operating officer. Dietrich is an apparel industry veteran who had worked for Lafayette 148 and Brandon Thomas. The brand also has some high-powered customers-turned-investors, including Jill Granoff, former CEO of Vince and Kenneth Cole, and J. David Scheiner, a former Macy’s and Perry Ellis executive, is on the company’s board of directors.
Dietrich described Anatomie as “Lululemon meets Prada,” and said that “before athleisure was commonplace, we saw a real niche in the market.”
When he joined, the brand was doing around $2.5 million in sales, and this year, that number is expected be 10 times larger, he said.
Even though Anatomie markets itself as a brand targeted to high-end travelers — its tag line is: Designed to Fly — it still managed to increase sales 5 percent last year when travel was nearly nonexistent.
The team attributed its success to the fact that it combines functionality and fine materials in contemporary styles with a European flair. The majority of the collection is manufactured in Europe from fabrics sourced from that continent.
The collection is lightweight — six pieces weigh only 2.4 ounces — can be washed by hand and dry within five minutes under a blow dryer or in less than two hours naturally.
Kate Boyer said described the collection as “elevated performancewear or pro leisure. We’re actually going to trademark ‘pro leisure,’” she said. ”It’s the opposite of fast fashion. It’s durable and built to last.”
With that as the backdrop, Anatomie found its customers clamoring for the company to go into men’s wear. And their wishes will be granted today when the collection launches on the brand website, its pop-ups in Aspen, Colo., Westport, Conn., and Miami, and select high-end stores such as Stanley Korshak in Dallas.
Although the brand does have strong wholesale distribution with more than 400 points of sale, 60 to 65 percent of its business is still direct-to-consumer and includes a pop-up strategy. In addition to Aspen, whose store size was increased to accommodate the new men’s collection, and the others currently open, Anatomie also plans to open a temporary space in Palm Beach, Fla., this fall.
Although the women’s line is extensive, offering pants, tops, jackets, vests, dresses and skirts, the initial men’s line will be tight. There will be three jacket styles including a blazer and jean-style; a vest; long coat; three pants styles — cargo, five-pocket and jogger; V-neck T-shirts, and button-down shirts.
The color palette will be black, navy or white only and prices will range from $98 for T-shirts to $398 for the jackets.
“They’re entry designer price points,” Kate Boyer said.
The team has high hopes for the men’s collection with Dietrich projecting that it can add 25 percent or more to the bottom line.
The brand tested men’s by offering a five-pocket jean-style Alessio pant on its website for $225 and Kate Boyer said Anatomie hast sold 1,800 pairs since its launch in 2019 offering proof that there is a market for the merchandise. “Men’s can easily be a third of the company,” she said.