Keep reading to see how the innovative Stitch Fix team brought Hawker Rye from a big idea to must-haves in your next Fix.
The Beginnings Of A Brand Vision
“Hawker Rye was born out of the need for accessible, everyday basics. The wardrobe staples that every guy needs, like a great button-up shirt, an essential tee, a better-fitting chino.” says Stitch Fix men’s buyer Christopher Da Costa. “The aesthetic? Call it ‘American prep,’ a creative, casual offering with a democratically broad appeal.”
When Christopher and the Stitch Fix team were first creating Hawker Rye, they looked at elements of brands they knew and loved, but were driven to avoid creating a copycat. So they took a decidedly data-driven approach.
“We’re not confined to a store,” Christopher explains, “so we had the ability to test a lot of different things and then reinvest what we learn back into the brand.”
Research showed that sizing is an issue for many men, so the team focused on improving the overall fit experience. When it came to style, they aimed to interpret trends, but in a more accessible way.
“Hawker Rye was born out of the need for accessible, everyday basics.”
Tailored to Client Needs
For Technical Design Manager Yasha Morehouse, simply being “good” wasn’t enough. Her department makes sure that Hawker Rye pieces are produced in the right way―reflecting precise fit, cut and style needs. For proof of perfection, just look at the 40 measurements used to create the ideal Hawker Rye button-up shirt (it’s borderline obsessive).
“We learned some key things from our clients,” Yasha explains. “It pushed us to break away from what the market is doing.” The result? A difference that delivers not only a better fit, but a slimmer look and a more comfortable feel. For example, “we were really particular about maintaining a higher, smaller arm hole. Something that’s a little different than existing brands.”
She’s also proud of the exclusive Hawker Rye chino. “It isn’t skin tight on your legs… But at the same time, it doesn’t give you a dumpy dad butt,” she jokes.
“Our customers pushed us to break away from what the market is doing.”
Designed With You In Mind
Like any new brand, Hawker Rye needed a name and identity system (logo, color palette and typography) that would serve as the foundation for tags, labels and other creative assets.
For designer Daniel Wells, the question was, “How can we live in this realm, but distinguish ourselves?” So he began by looking at the market—and the audience. “Knowing the customer is crucial. You have to ask yourself, ‘can I see them responding to that?’”
Like Hawker Rye garments, the brand identity is approachable. It’s simple, clean and modern, mirroring the clothing itself. “I’m designing for what’s familiar, but also making it more refined,” Daniel says. “Doing things with a type that brings harmony.”
“Knowing the customer is crucial. You have to ask yourself, ‘can I see them responding to that?’”
Down To The Last Detail
As the first exclusive menswear brand from Stitch Fix, Hawker Rye required a special sort of attention. Working between the buying and technical design teams, Susie Breuer’s production and product development group leaves nothing to chance. From fabric choice to trim selection to manufacturing options, everything must be carefully considered.
“Let’s just say I’m a big fan of really small details,” she admits. “Something may look great on screen, but will it work hard in a garment? We can’t release anything that’s subpar, because it has to last. We’re proud of the product we’re making.”
Patience, attention to detail, resourceful thinking—all of it goes into bringing a brand from initial idea to final product: “Menswear is all about the details because you can’t hide anything with a ruffle.”
From fabric choice to trim selection to manufacturing options, everything must be carefully considered.
The Next Chapter
Christopher Da Costa is pulling samples off a rack from the Hawker Rye spring collection. He’s excited about how far the brand has come—and thrilled about where it’s going. For the team on Hawker Rye, everyday life serves as the ultimate inspiration, knowing that the lines between work and play are often blurred. And guys need a style that reflects that. Fundamentally comfortable, but always presentable.
“We want to make sure he feels good while wearing it,” says Christopher. “And that he always looks great.”
Want to try Hawker Rye? Ask for it in your next Fix.