(Filed Under wholesale Lingerie News). Leading Lady, an intimate apparel brand specializing in maternity, nursing and full-figure lingerie, is celebrating its 70th birthday this year. Frank G. Farino founded the Cleveland, Ohio-based company in 1939. Today Farino’s son, Al Corrado, serves as CEO of the company, and his grandson, Mark Corrado, serves as president of the family-owned business.
When the bra manufacturer who employed Farino went out of business, he accepted two sewing machines in lieu of vacation pay and purchased the businesses existing inventory, thus establishing Leading Lady. He branched into maternity intimate apparel during World War II because since maternity/nursing bras were considered medical items, they were not affected by the fabric rationing that affected the majority of intimate apparel, leading to a shortage in raw material.
According to the company, over the years they have adjusted to changing times by implementing best practices and sustainable initiatives, as well producing quality products with competitive pricing in fashion-forward styles. “We specialize in niche product lines and we feel we do them well,” Al Corrado said. “But we wouldn’t have been able to do this without our loyal customers, long term relationships with our vendors and especially our dedicated employees.”
“I think my grandfather would be proud of the fact that we have adapted over the years,” Mark Corrado commented. “We had only just begun to sell to the mass merchants when he was still alive. Since then we have gone from servicing the maternity boutiques to department stores, mass merchants and the growing online market.”
Leading Lady’s products are distributed nationally under the Leading Lady brand and under private label through department stores, mass merchants, specialty boutiques, mail order and online catalogs. Macy’s, JCPenney and JMS.com are among those who carry products under the Leading Lady brand name.
For further information, call (216) 464-5490.
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