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Smashing In the News

March 21, 2013
SBL Cover

A Smashing Story

It’s Spring Break for the partners at Smashing – but don’t worry, everyone else here is required to work 24×7 for the next week to compensate!  (Although our families will attest that we’re still always working!)

While Kelly is lounging on the beach w/ umbrella drinks, I’ll be with my boys looking at colleges and doing a Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives road trip through Indiana, Kentucky, Nashville, Memphis and St Louis and then up back to Chicago through Illinois.  If anyone has any Triple D suggestions that we need to see along that route – please let me know in the comments. In the meantime, here’s an excerpt from a recent magazine article on Smashing Golf & Tennis published by South Barrington Life to bring everyone up to speed about the Smashing story.  A special thanks to our girlfriends that joined us on the cover!

There are 10 Supermodels in the world,

Smashing designs Golf and Tennis clothes for the other 3 billion women.

We are Barrington women who had an idea:  We spent a year and a half researching different fabrics from around the world.  We were in search of the best performance fabrics that could also satisfy the fashionista in all of us. We found the right fabrics, and paired with our original design, our golf and tennis apparel will not only allow you to perform better, it will also make you look better. We call it “Fashion that Performs.”

Smashing Golf & Tennis is headquartered here in Barrington, IL and run locally by co-founders Jayne Drew and Kelly Daugherty.  Smashing was launched in 2011 and is the only golf and tennis brand that shapes and slims.  After seeing our recent article in the Huffington Post, we were asked by South Barrington Life if we would be interested in writing about our journey in starting our business – highlighting the successes and the obstacles of launching a line of sportswear that is now available nationwide.

All great business ideas begin with martinis, right?  In our case, it was pomegranate martinis, which has the added benefit of anti-oxidants. Tennis friends Jayne & Kelly had been fermenting a business idea for a couple of months while they played, but due to their busy schedules, couldn’t find time during the day to flesh it out.  Finally, during an evening of martinis, the brainstorming began.  We realized that we were frustrated and noticed that the majority of tennis apparel was made to fit a twenty-something body.  As much as we looked forward to our weekly matches, we were not quite as excited about the little outfits that did nothing for us – which are adorable, if you’ve never had kids.

We hated the “fat sucking, muffin top inducing” styles – we wanted something that was figure flattering, and thus Smashing was conceived.  Now while we may lightheartedly debate who said it first, in a eureka moment we thought, “When are they going to put shape wear in tennis clothes?”  And thus business was launched. A line of golf and tennis apparel for women that has an inner layer of compression (or shapewear) to make you “Slimmer in Seconds.”

We knew we were onto a great idea, but now we had to actually design a product that addressed this problem.  One benefit of our team was that we both had different business backgrounds, and so brought different expertise to the table.  Kelly was a VP at a top advertising agency where she specialized in consumer insights/strategy writing and how to target consumers, while Jayne has vast international business experience holding high-level positions in both the Financial Services and IT industries.  But neither had a fashion design and manufacturing background – so where to start?

We had thought that we’d have to go to New York or LA to find the expertise, suppliers and manufacturers we needed, which would have proved problematic for a start-up short on funds and kids still in grade school. But through a friend of a friend, the doors to the Chicago fashion industry were opened to us and we’ve never looked back.  We’re thrilled to have local access to resources, as it made the idea much more achievable.  It also made us determined to support the Chicagoland economy and keep our manufacturing local.  We are proud to be a made the USA brand, complete with high quality and technically advanced milled in the US fabrics.

After several prototypes and iterations of designs tested by our tennis and golf friends at the South Barrington Club and Biltmore Country Club, we were ready to hit the market.  Fortunately, we had already developed a following of people rooting for us.  One of the great ideas we had early on was to start a blog of our adventures – where we decided that we would share all, good and bad.

Everyone loves an underdog, so with a huge thanks to our blog fans, plus our Facebook and Twitter followers, we successfully launched in March of 2011.

Our first big break came when we were featured by Shape Magazine in the August 2011 issue. Since then, Smashing Golf & Tennis has been featured in countless publications and media outlets including The Huffington Post, NBC News, FOX Morning, Golf Digest, Shape Magazine, Chicago Tribune and More Magazine.

So what’s next?  Smashing continues to add more innovative and flattering designs to our lines and is expanding our sales force nationally as we grow our business.  Smashing will also sponsor the LPGA tour this season and we’re excited that pro golfers Ashley Grier and Alexandra Casi wear Smashing’s apparel on the ladies tour.

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Have a Smashing Spring Break!

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