“I’ve had people reach out about their marketplaces wanting me to join. Unless they’re on Convictional, it’s just a lot of operational effort to try to update every single platform.”
Reprise is a line of plant-based activewear designed to bring you a better, more natural workout. Reprise’s products are polyester-free and made for comfort with plant-based and sustainable materials across its supply chain. The pieces are made out of Tencel, a eucalyptus based fiber, and are designed and manufactured in New York City.
Give Consumers a Plastic-Free Activewear Solution
Mary Bemis founded Reprise in 2017 when she realized that the fast fashion habits that she and so many others engage in were harmful to the environment. She saw an opportunity to create a sustainable activewear brand that brought trends she saw in the clean food and clean beauty movements to fashion.
In 2018, Mary completed the initial round of designs for Reprise and launched a successful Kickstarter campaign to raise $18,000 and fund its first round of production. She did this while working her full-time data and analytics job in New York.
After Reprise went live, Mary wanted to scale the business by showing up wherever her customers shopped, not just on her own website. To broaden her reach, she needed to develop retail partnerships.
The only problem? Wholesaling to retailers proved trickier to figure out than she expected.
Going from DTC to Retail While Avoiding Wholesale Challenges
For Mary, wholesaling to retailers had higher barriers to entry than going direct to consumers did.
“...It felt like I needed to go to trade shows, collect orders, sort of that old school model,” says Mary.
Wholesale pricing and inventory management proved challenging for her to work through when she got into initial discussions with retailers. “...The costing and margins are different than direct to consumer,” she says.
This challenge clashed with the fact that prospective customers tended to buy Reprise products after they had an opportunity to interact with its Tencel material.
Mary knew she had to partner with retailers quickly, or else she’d miss out on sales.