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Gene Meyer


Senior Member
Oct 24, 2004
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Had never even heard the name until recently, just saw some iof his stuff and liked it. any thoughts on it ? quality ? I won an auction for a pair of his khaki's, new, for $20. Maybe good to tool around in ? We'll see...


Senior Member
Oct 1, 2004
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I work at a chain that sells his brand exclusively. I can buy it all the time for 80% off becuase nobody likes it. he had 3 stores open selling his items but they all went under. As for quailty, it is not very good.


Distinguished Member
Jan 27, 2003
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gene meyer is an american designer that had his own label but like so many american designers on their own, went bankrupt (think everyone from john bartlett to isaac mizrahi)

meyer is famous for his solid coloured blocks on shirts and ties but he did do a full collection on his own

however, post bankruptcy, target picked him up for a line of clothing for their stores but i believe after one short season, the potential was seen and it soon migrated to a more standard line and was placed in their marshall field's stores, which division was recently sold target to the may co.

think kenneth cole quality


Oct 11, 2004
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Hi all:

As something of an admirer of Gene Meyer's color sensibility (though not quite as big on some of his styling choices), I thought I'd append a few articles from DNR--most recent first--that should give anyone tracking this thread a concise history of this talented and quite overlooked artist:

Daily News Record, Nov 10, 2003 p5



NEW YORK -- Marshall Field's will debut its new exclusive Gene Meyer collection for spring with a soft launch of men's wear in December, followed by a full rollout of men's and women's wear in all of the retailer's 62 doors in February. The announcement last week by the Chicago-based Field's, a unit of Target Corp., confirms an April 14 report in DNR.

The Gene Meyer men's offerings include tailored clothing, sportswear, dress shirts and a neckwear collection. Designed to sit in Marshall Field's "Modern" area, adjacent to Kenneth Cole, the label is targeted at 30-something department store customers. Larry Azar, Marshall Field's vice-president of trend and product development, declined to discuss volume goals but said the retailer expected the label to grow into a substantial business. "Gene will be the lead statement in both our men's and women's modern departments, and we think he's going to lead our charge in that zone. Gene really understands this guest, and his signature use of color and unexpected detail plays well into our merchandising strategy," he noted.

Gene Meyer folded his own men's label in 2002, following the financial failure of licensee Dino di Milano. Licensing agent SOS Management brokered this new exclusive partnership agreement with Marshall Field's earlier this year.

Meyer's first spring collection for the department store chain, which operates stores in eight Midwestern states, includes pinstripe suits, washed-sateen blazers, striped knit rugbys, one-button polos, striped and patterned shirts, and cotton canvas pants. Silhouettes are slim, but accessible and understandable to a large audience.

"I wanted to do spare, modern clothes that are a no-brainer for the customer," he explained. "These are great pieces that have a simplicity to them, but also a beautiful surface appeal and interest." To that end, there are eye-catching color details throughout the line, and unique racing-stripe linings on jackets that immediately call to mind Meyer's previous designs for his own label. But the designer clearly toned things down for this new project. "I think I used too many colors before, and it may have been too complicated. I wanted to make it easy to mix and match pieces from different deliveries from the new line. This is much more real than what I was doing before," Meyer noted.

That realness translates into merchandise-moving price points, with suits pegged at $495, blazers at $295, dress shirts at $59.50 to $69.50, trousers at $125, sweaters at $50 to $60, woven sport shirts at $59.50, T-shirts at $32 to $49.50, and jackets at $80 to $100.

Marshall Field's will implement a wide-ranging marketing campaign to support the new Gene Meyer label that will likely include magazine and newspaper print ads, and possibly television. "The details are still being finalized, but it will be a very fun campaign," said Azar.

A men's and women's cold-weather accessory collection will be added to the label's lineup for the fall 2004 season.

Daily News Record, April 14, 2003 p1



NEW YORK -- Target Corp. is resurrecting the Gene Meyer label in a deal aimed at bringing a proprietary designer name to its department stores, market sources told DNR.

The retail giant has inked a license with the designer to market both men's and women's sportswear, tailored clothing and accessories under the Gene Meyer label in its "better divisions," according to sources, which would mean distribution in the company's Marshall Field's stores, and possibly the moderate-priced Mervyn's chain.

Target officials declined to comment on the report last week.

Meyer was spotted in Europe recently in the company of Target executives, shopping trends and preparing for the relaunch of his label, indicating he will likely be closely involved in the design and direction of the collection. Gene Meyer-branded product is expected to be in stores by the end of this year, according to sources.

Several calls to Meyer's home in New York were not returned.

As reported, Meyer's men's collection business folded last summer, following the financial failure of licensee Dino di Milano. In December, Meyer signed with licensing agent SOS Management to seek out new business opportunities. In February, Stephen Wayne, chairman of SOS Management, told DNR he was close to finalizing a deal and that he envisioned a $20 million to $50 million retail business for the Gene Meyer brand in 2004.

Target Corp. is well known for the string of brands with designer cachet it has brought into its corporate fold, but it has previously concentrated on its Target Stores discount chain, not its department stores. Target discount stores now boast proprietary brands including Mossimo, Cherokee and Phys. Sci. in the apparel category; Michael Graves, Philippe Starck, Todd Oldham, Swell by Cynthia Rowley and Ilene Rosenzweig in home furnishings; and Liz Lange in maternity wear. Most recently the company signed Isaac Mizrahi to create an exclusive line of women's sportswear, which will hit stores in August. "Target has made an art form out of exclusive brands," noted Todd Slater, a retail analyst at Lazard Freres. "In apparel it can be difficult for discounters to secure national brands for their stores, so forging their own brands has been a necessity." Along those lines, Wal-Mart has been growing its George apparel business and Kmart has bet big on Joe Boxer.

Daily News Record, Feb 24, 2003 p8



NEW YORK -- Gene Meyer has signed an exclusive long-term agreement with licensing agency S.O.S. Management, and is close to announcing a deal for a new line of men's and women's apparel, dress furnishings and accessories, according to parties close to the discussions. The agreement would represent Meyer's re-entry into the fashion business, following the abrupt closure of his men's collection business last summer by Miami-based Dino di Milano, due to that company's financial meltdown, as reported.

"I hope things will be different this time around," said Meyer with a laugh when reached at home in New York. "I realized that I didn't want to be in the situation again of just doing expensive men's wear. It's a very difficult category to do out of the U.S. I'm really excited to get back to designing both men's and women's wear."

Meyer said he expects his label to remain in the better-priced arena, but he would not be adverse to widening distribution to more-mass-oriented channels in the future. "I think it's all valid now. I have less belief now in really expensive things. There's a need for a handful of people to do that, but when you get lots of people competing in that area, it gets difficult," he explained.

Currently, Meyer licenses his name to M&M International for rugs, Acme Studios for writing instruments and Italy-based Laboratorio Santina for ties and socks, which are sold mainly in London and have just begun to be marketed in the U.S.

S.O.S. Management has high hopes for a revitalized Gene Meyer brand in the U.S. and envisions a $20 million-$50 million retail apparel business for the label next year. "That's our goal," said Stephen Wayne, chairman of the licensing agency. "I think it's a viable brand with worldwide potential that needs some marketing and advertising expertise brought to it. Gene has had some bad breaks and hopefully we can bring some good karma to the guy."

S.O.S. Management owns and operates the B.U.M. Equipment trademark and is the exclusive licensing agent for juniors' label Rampage. Additionally, through a separate licensing company, called Stephen Wayne & Associates, Wayne also represents the Andrew Fezza, Ron Chereskin, Steve Madden and Buffalo Jeans brands.

"What attracted us to Gene was that he had a clean slate that we could work with," noted Wayne. "He's a talented designer with no baggage and no [licensing] mess to clean up."

Daily News Record, August 19, 2002 p18



NEW YORK -- Financially troubled Dino di Milano has been sold to Miami-based TLL Group and its Gene Meyer designer sportswear business has been shuttered. The purchase price was undisclosed.

As reported, Adolfo Skrande, owner of Dino di Milano, had faced a cash crunch because of lower sales and a tightening of credit from factors and lenders. While the Gene Meyer business has closed, TLL Group will continue to operate Dino di Milano's license for Dickies sport shirts and its substantial private-label activewear and sportswear business for clients such as Kmart.

TLL Group is a holding company for Dynasty Apparel, which has the Hang Ten license in a number of categories, including young men's, juniors', boys' and headwear. Its other licenses include ESPN, Honda motocross racing, and certain Major League Baseball and NHL rights, with total sales in excess of $30 million last year, according to Ignacio Mendez, one of three brothers who own the company.

"Frankly, we didn't have an interest in the Gene Meyer segment of the business," noted Mendez. "We don't have experience in the high-fashion market, and the Dickies license complements our existing businesses a lot better."

Skrande has returned rights to the Gene Meyer name to the designer.

Reached at home, Meyer said he was planning to take a break -- perhaps permanently -- from the men's fashion industry. "I thought everything was going really well," Meyer said. "We had a great fall season, and I didn't see this coming. I guess backers aren't really going to tell you about their financial problems."

Meyer's fall lines, which had been ordered by Lord & Taylor, Macy's West, Macy's East and Marshall Field's, among others, will not be shipped. "We sold $3 million for the fall season and it was growing," said Kevin Ryan, creative director at the label. "It was all produced, and now it's just sitting in factories in China and Italy. [Dino di Milano] just ran out of money, and the factors pulled the lines of credit."

Meyer said he would will continue to work with his home furnishings licensees, which includes rugs with M&M International, and pens and pocket watches with Acme Studios. He is also interested in starting a custom-furniture business with his younger brother Doug Meyer. "I don't think I want to go back to doing men's," he said. "It's so difficult for an American designer to compete against the huge European companies. I guess I'm feeling low about the whole thing."

Meyer, who started out in 1989 making custom designs for women, began a neckwear line in 1991. He launched an acclaimed men's wear line in 1995 with Mondo di Marco. When that company went bankrupt in 2000, Gene Meyer formed his partnership with Dino di Milano in November 2000.

Daily News Record, April 27, 1998 n50 p1B(1)


James Fallon, Lauren Goldstein, Stan Williams

Fall 1998 will mark the end of Gene Meyer's mainfloor sportswear line, Gene. The Gene line had been produced for five seasons by Mondo Inc., the licensing partner of Gene Meyer. Warren Katz, the president of $60 million Mondo Inc., said the sales efforts previously devoted to Gene would now be directed towards growing the Gene Meyer collection.

Designer Gene Meyer said the decision was a welcome one for him and that with the change he and his partner Kevin Ryan would be more involved in the sale of the collection. Katz said he expects to double the $6 million collection business in three years. Currently Gene Meyer is sold in about 10 Saks Fifth Avenue doors, five Bloomingdale's locations and Macy's West as well as other specialty retailers.

For the first time, three salespeople will be dedicated to selling just the Gene Meyer collection. Meyer said he found that the more unusual pieces of his collection often sell the best and as a result the suits in the spring/summer 1999 collection will be softer, often unlined, and make use of fabrics with subtle additions like stretch. A best-seller for Meyer has been the light weight jersey suit that retails for about $500. Meyer and Ryan started in men's wear with a distinctive neckwear line that quickly grew to a $1 million business. Katz returned to Mondo as president after former president and co-founder Ben Greszes sold his share of the company to Pina Wachter, the widow of his former partner, Marco Wachter. Katz said the company is making several other changes including a redesign of the company logo, planned for fall '99 or the season after. Both Mondo di Marco and Gene Meyer are seeking licenses in several areas: domestics and home furnishings for Gene Meyer and footwear and eyewear for Mondo di Marco. Both brands are looking to license women's wear. Mondo Inc. retained International Management Group (IMG) in September of 1997 to be their worldwide licensing agent. Currently Mondo Inc. has one licensing partner, Italian Design Group.

The company is also planning to introduce several new trademarked fabrics for fall 1999. They currently hold the trademark for CASH-COTTON, a washable cotton and viscose blend.

Daily News Record, May 19, 1994 v24 n96 p4(1)

Mondo close to licensing Gene Meyer for accessories.

NEW YORK -- Mondo, Inc., is close to signing a worldwide licensing agreement with Gene Meyer to manufacture and market neckwear and boxer shorts, beginning with holiday '95 delivery.

The initial accessories offerings will be followed up with dress shirts, sport shirts and sportswear classifications with Meyer, according to Warren Katz, president of the accessories division of Mondo.

Mondo, as reported, recently signed a licensing agreement with Bill Kaiserman for men's sportswear, beginning with fall '94 delivery.

Katz added, "Gene Meyer has the pulse of the contemporary market and an understanding of fashion that extends from men's into women's." He did not rule out the possibility that the license may eventually extend into women's wear, although no women's wear is currently produced by Mondo. Katz added that the firm has discussed the possibility of going into women's products in the near future.

Mondo currently produces sportswear and accessories under the Mondo di Marco, Pronto Uomo and Marco Wachter labels.

Gene Meyer accessories products are currently marketed to such better stores as Saks Fifth Avenue, Bergdorf Goodman Men and Bloomingdale's, among other accounts.

Gene Meyer has been manufacturing neckwear under license with Juraku since '91. Prior to that, he had operated a women's custom clothing business since 1989.


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