Walmart brings in Brandon Maxwell as creative director of elevated fashion brands
American retail giant Walmart announced on Tuesday that Texas-born designer Brandon Maxwell will be collaborating with the company as the creative director of its Free Assembly and Scoop private label fashion brands.
In this role, Maxwell will lead the design of the seasonal collections for men’s, women’s, children’s and accessories at both brands, which have a more elevated positioning among Walmart’s private label fashion businesses.
As part of his design responsibilities, he will also provide input concerning material selection, sourcing and production. In addition, he will be involved in marketing initiatives and campaigns for the Free Assembly and Scoop brands.
Free Assembly was launched in Fall 2020 and seeks to offer elevated essentials with solid value for money. Formerly a standalone fashion boutique, Scoop became a Walmart private label in Fall 2019, and aims to provide customers with trend-inspired fashion at an accessible price point.
Maxwell, who will oversee four seasonal collections a year for the brands, will begin by participating in the design of their Holiday 2021 collections, before debuting his first full collections for the labels in Spring 2022.
“Working with Walmart has long been a dream of mine. Like many people across the country who live in a small town, Walmart was the destination for everything where I grew up in Texas, including clothing,” said the designer in a release. “This partnership allows me to bring the experience and joy of fashion to countless people who live in small towns across the country. Everyone deserves to have access to well-designed clothing at an accessible price point.”
Maxwell launched his namesake luxury womenswear brand in New York in 2015 and counts the likes of Lady Gaga, Oprah, Tiffany Haddish, and first ladies Michelle Obama and Dr. Jill Biden among his fans.
In line with the partnership between the designer and Walmart, Maxwell has also designed a line of exclusive face masks, which are now available to purchase at the retailer’s stores. Furthermore, Walmart is making a donation of $100,000 to DonorsChoose.org, a charity selected by Maxwell, which supports public school teachers in need of funding to provide students with materials and experiences.
The announcement of Maxwell’s collaboration with Walmart comes on the heels of the appointment of Denise Incandela as EVP of the retailer’s apparel business. The executive, who previously served as SVP for Walmart’s women's group, elevated brands, and e-tailers/DTCs – a role in which she was responsible for a significant expansion in the retailer’s fashion offering – has said that she intends to continue her efforts to establish Walmart as “a destination for fashion.”
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