(Filed Under wholesale Activewear News). Blue Canoe, a wholesaler of U.S-made eco-friendly basic lingerie, activewear, maternity/nursing intimates and sleepwear, is testing soft cups for the upcoming fall season. The company has added removable cups to three best-selling styles, consisting of the Lara, a basic active top with a high-round neck and racer back; the E-Tank, which includes slimming contrast side panels; and the Soft Cup bra, formally called the Cross Over bra, which is “a great seller,” according to Laurie Dunlap, president of the company. The company is also introducing a new style with removable cups, coined the support cami, which Dunlap said, “can be used as a yoga/exercise top or an under layer, actually replacing the need for a bra.
“The design with the under-bust seams and center gathers, [and combined with] the soft cup [this makes for] a very supportive and shaping top that is much more comfortable than a bra, as it doesn’t include tight elastics or underwires.”
The soft cup option will raise prices for these items by $1 to $2, with wholesale prices now running at $19 for the Soft Cup bra, $25 for the Support Cami, $29.50 for the E-Tank, and $34 for the Lara Top.
Dunlap reported that the company is trying out the soft cups to assess its customers’ desire for it. “We are adding the soft cup option to just a few styles to see whether our customers really want them,” she commented. “Since they are removable, my guess is that those who do not care for the cups can simply remove them and still have a great top with a supportive, inside bra liner.
“Blue Canoe has built the bulk of its business over the last 10 years on our comfort bra line; bras that shape and lift through ingenious design and supportive organic cotton/spandex fabrics. Our bras are truly 24/7 bras—comfortable enough to wear all day. They are also healthy as they are non-binding and do not cut lymph flow as typical bras do, [which is] essential for breast health. Working within these limits we have looked at additional ways to make our tops more shaping while keeping them comfortable and healthy. The soft cups fit the bill. In addition, especially for work-out apparel, they take care of nipples that show through, even with an inside-bra liner.”
In other news, the company is expanding on its sleepwear range for fall by adding a swing gown, ballet gown, and lounge pant paired with a lace camisole. Previously, its only sleepwear items were the night slip and robe. All styles in this category are constructed from a blend of organically-grown cotton and bamboo. Styles run in sizes S through L, and wholesale from $19.50 for the camisole to $44 for the Ballet Gown.
Dunlap expects the styles to appeal to Blue Canoe’s core customer base of women aged 35 to 60. She added that the company’s full range of customers span across generations; from ages 25 to 90.
Blue Canoe products can be found at specialty stores internationally including Blessed Earth in Australia; Upper Breast Side in Manhattan; and Eco Goods in Santa Cruz, Calif.
Felina Rakowski-Gallagher, president of Upper Breast Side, reported a positive customer response to Blue Canoe’s maternity/nursing bra, Jane’s Plus. “The comments I have heard from customers is that this is simply the most comfortable bra that a woman will wear while pregnant, nursing or otherwise,” she said.
“We know there are many bras that fit into the category of nursing, and there are many such bras that are made of cotton and simple to use, but Blue Canoe is spot on with bringing all of the necessary pieces together, and providing stores with top-quality products. I’m happy to pay a little bit more for them because my customers are getting an organic product that is well made. They are also very nice to work with from a vendor standpoint, and seem to really want to please the consumer.”
For further information, contact the company’s Garberville, Calif. office at (707) 923-1373, or e-mail Laurie@BlueCanoe.com.
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