June 27 (Bloomberg) -- Brooks Brothers, the almost two-century-old clothing maker known for suits and oxford shirts, is hiring designer and “Project Runway” judge Zac Posen to “modernize” its women’s apparel.
Posen will serve as creative director for Brooks Brothers’ signature women’s collection and accessories, the New York-based company said today in a statement. Women’s clothing accounts for about 20 percent of the company’s sales.
In joining Brooks Brothers, Posen brings red-carpet experience to a brand trying to shake off its businesslike image. He has designed eveningwear for Michelle Obama as well as celebrities like Gwyneth Paltrow and Naomi Watts. He also has served as a judge alongside Heidi Klum and Nina Garcia on “Project Runway,” a reality-show competition featuring fashion designers.
“As soon as we met, it was clear to us that he had a true understanding of our brand and its storied 196-year heritage as well as the creativity to modernize our offerings within the category,” Brooks Brothers Chief Executive Officer Claudio Del Vecchio said in the statement.
Brooks Brothers previously hired Thom Browne, another high-profile designer, to create its hipper Black Fleece line. It first appeared in 2007.
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