Barbara Lesser, designer of casual contemporary sportswear and dresses, launched a highly
successful business based on her own desire to look good yet remain comfortable during her hectic life. Whether setting a new season’s color palette or rushing through her very active life, Lesser wants exactly what her customer has come to expect – comfort and ease of care in a beautiful, fashionable, feminine package. This innovative entrepreneur knows from experience that adapting to change and evolving a business to meet market demands is the way not only to survive, but also thrive in the fashion industry.
The Los Angeles based designer earned her BFA in Fashion Design from New York’s Pratt Institute. She began her career as a sweater designer and found herself traveling to Europe and Asia just a few months into her job. After working in New York for several years, the Michigan native headed west, taking a position with San Francisco Shirt Works and then with Esprit at the height of the company’s growth.
After a ten year stint as owners of Felicity, an updated sportswear company, and then some time off for globe-trotting and quality family time, Barbara and her husband Mark were ready to get back to work, launching Wearable Integrity, Inc. The Lessers were pioneers in the field of environmentally responsible manufacturing and organic cotton. The apparel industry took them down an unpredictable path and they soon found themselves leading the way in the casual dress market. Riding the wave of a strong dress trend, Barbara carved a name for herself as a dress maven who truly understood the needs and desires of women of the ’90’s. As the dress cycle evolved, Mark had the foresight to launch a sportswear division called FIBERS by Barbara Lesser. Today, Barbara enjoys the acclaim that comes her way due to a sportswear collection that features artisan hand dye techniques in amazing color blends on T-shirts, dresses, pants and skirts. Most of the collection is made in California, defining the Lessers as strong supporters of the "Made in the U.S.A." ideal.
Whatever the product, Lesser remains true to her devoted customer – the busy woman who wants fashion that is both cool and comfortable. Her silhouettes are always flattering to a variety of body types. Barbara says that lifestyle, as well as fashion trends and exciting colors, play a large role in affecting her design decisions.
Barbara Lesser’s corporate mission is to produce items that are fashionable, comfortable, easy care and high quality. In doing so, we strive to provide a responsible, professional, and positive workplace with growth potential for our employees. Barbara adds, "Our team works together to make the best products possible and have as many laughs as we can, along the way."