Alex Nelson was riding a double-decker bus in London when she decided she wanted something else to wear to work. "We were about 6 months out of business school, and both of us were struggling with finding cute clothes to wear to work," says Christina Wallace, who was working in DC at the time—"a veritable wasteland of fashion."
The friends soon hatched a scheme to launch a new womenswear collection that would use "real measurements," Wallace explains. "When when we studied why tailored clothes generally don't fit women, we discovered the assumptions that underlie the 'dress size' were the problem—ever wonder why you had everything from a size 2 to a size 12 in your closet, and yet some things still don't fit you?"
Eventually, the duo—both 28 years old and hailing from the midwest—launched Quincy, a collection of professional wardrobe staples that combines menwear's super-precise suiting specs with—ingeniously—bra cup sizes.
"It's a new standard for tailored clothes that brings us closer to 'custom clothing,' without sacrificing the benefits of off-the-rack shopping," says Wallace. "What does a '6' mean, anyway?"
If that all sounds a little daunting, have no fear: a handy online quiz helps you determine your proper fit.
Focusing on classic staples like the perfect black blazer or crisp sheath dress, Quincy pieces—all of which are made in New York—have a timeless, elegant appeal.
"We want to make young women feel as authentic and stylish in their work clothes as they do in their free time," says Wallace. "At the same time, we promise that these pieces will always be appropriate for the office with hems and necklines that are suitable for work." To wit, the silky Fiona bow blouse in deep amethyst, or the Emma jacket in shimmery silver tweed with black piping.
Order online at www.quincyapparel.com.