The Perfect Fit

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A conversation with Lisa Kulson,
Creative Director of Womenswear,
about style, innovation and
the inspiration behind Theory’s
bestselling fits.

In the time you’ve been at Theory tell us how its philosophy on the perfect fit has evolved?

Theory was built around the idea of the perfect essential pant and the perfect shirt. Initially the perfect fit was built for the modern working woman at that time. We were one of the first to incorporate stretch fabrics and Lycra into sportswear fabrics, so this enabled the pant to be sexy, feminine, comfortable and versatile. Over the years, as the collection has grown into a global brand and our customer’s lifestyle and needs have evolved, that essential pant has turned into a collection of the most relevant, modern and best-fitting pant silhouettes for each season. Theory is always about essential items in your wardrobe and the idea that they evolve from season to season.

Is there such a thing as the perfect fit?

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The “perfect fit” is about the
perfect fit for each style and fabric.
Shop This Look

Even if we offer the same pant in different fabrics, I will fit each one in each unique fabric. This attention to detail assures the most perfect fit for the season. We are constantly looking at the proportion and details as well—the length of the fly, whether or not a waistband should have a structured or unstructured construction, the width of the leg opening. This assures the most modern fit and assures that we remain relevant to what is going on in fashion. So yes, there is a perfect fit. However, it keeps evolving.

Who do you have in mind when designing then?

We design for the Theory woman. She is modern, fashion relevant, super conscious of quality and fit. She keeps herself in shape and looking good. She is confident about how she looks and feels in the clothes. This is the body we design for.

She is modern, fashion relevant, super conscious of quality and fit.
On Model

The slim crop, the relaxed trouser, the high-waisted flare—is there an overarching message in pants?

The message in terms of pants is that there is a variety, but they all have a commonality being that they feel relevant for the season—each serves a purpose. The wider leg is a bit more fashion forward. The slim and super slim styles are edgier. The ankle-length slim trouser is always a Theory staple as it has become a classic American sportswear essential. The pull-on has also become the go-to essential which goes from work day to weekend. Well-thought-out subtle details add an element of fashion and edginess—a hem slit on the inside or back of the leg, a menswear curtaining in a waistband construction.

Pull-ons are a modern addition to the collection. Why did you include these?

Pull-on pants have always been a staple in the Theory girl’s wardrobe. They definitely emerged from the street and active world, but at Theory they take on a sophisticated and modern feel when cut in unexpected fabrics—superfine stretch wools, Japanese crepes, silk. When a pull-on pant is executed in these unexpected luxury fabrics they become modern and cool and very relevant to a modern woman’s wardrobe. The added details of flat-front constructions, slimmer leg openings, lower-slung waists and seaming keep these pants from looking too casual.

Any tips for finding the perfect pant?

When shopping for pants make sure that they are the correct size. A lot of women buy pants, especially pants with stretch, a size too small. The stretch is there for comfort, durability and to give a modern fit. They should not fit like a second skin.