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Those who subscribe to the Sperry Top-Sider lifestyle might have wondered what kept the popular New England brand from producing more than just shoes. But now, that concern has been squashed, as the 78-year old brand introduces its first ever apparel collection for guys and gals. Don't think it's just preppy wares—performance is a focus here, with water-repellant fabric finishes, SPF 50 sun protection on knits, and tri-layer breathable waterproof sailing jackets. There is a more luxury-focused component to the line as well, with silk blouses featuring nautical prints and wool yacht club blazers.
Businessweek wonders whether the addition will hurt the company's strong, established footwear business given that the company has no experience with apparel, while WWD reports that Sperry's long term goal is to prioritize the women's market and fall as a season.
· Sperry Top-Sider to Launch Apparel for Fall [WWD]
· Will Apparel Sink Sperry's Sailing Shoe Business? [Businessweek]
· Sperry Top-Sider [Official Site]