Payless ShoeSource Announces Its Latest Designer Label With Famed Colombian Fashion Designer Silvia Tcherassi

Tcherassi Joins Expanding Payless Guest Designer Team on a Mission to Democratize Fashion in Footwear, Accessories for All to Enjoy

Mar 28, 2011, 08:00 ET from Payless ShoeSource

TOPEKA, Kan. and MIAMI, March 28, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Payless ShoeSource announced today that it is expanding its industry-leading designer collaboration program under which the retailer partners with top fashion designers to create affordable designer footwear and accessory collections, and that the company is now partnering with internationally acclaimed Colombian fashion designer, Silvia Tcherassi, to create the latest Payless designer label, Silvia Tcherassi for Payless, with an initial collection available in May.

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Under the two-year collaboration, Tcherassi will design two, semi-annual collections including shoes and handbags for the Spring and Fall seasons.  The exclusive designs by Tcherassi, to be priced from $40-$70 an item, will reflect a strong international and Latin influence inspired by the urban woman with a contemporary, passionate and vibrant sense of style.

For customers in the United States and Puerto Rico, the Silvia Tcherassi for Payless collection will be available at select Payless stores in eight cities in Puerto Rico and in about 15 U.S. markets including New York City, Miami, Tampa Bay, Boston and Washington D.C., among others, as well as a limited offering on Payless.com.  The new line will also be available in stores across Latin America including Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Panama and Trinidad and Tobago. 

"I am thrilled to be working with Payless on my first-ever shoe label.  This is a great opportunity to create shoes and handbags to complement my existing fashion collections and for the Spring/Summer season this includes many important silhouettes like wedges, flats, strappy heels and thongs sandals with key trend details like bright color-blocking, unique mesh uppers and satin ribbon details and ties," commented Tcherassi. "It was inspiring to work with the Payless footwear design team in NYC -- together we created a sophisticated, contemporary collection that features the latest trends and high-end style, but at an affordable price starting at $40 a pair."  

Payless designer collections are among the most widely distributed designer footwear labels in America today and a key strategy for Payless in its mission to democratize fashion, design and the latest ideas in footwear and accessories for all to enjoy.   Tcherassi now joins a team of talented fashion designers including Christian Siriano with Christian Siriano for Payless, Lela Rose with Lela Rose for Payless and Unforgettable Moments by Lela Rose, and Isabel Toledo with Isabel Toledo for Payless -- all exclusive labels available only at Payless that focus on delivering high-end footwear and accessories fashions at a great price.  These designers create exclusive collections for Payless that are typically available in the U.S., Canada, Puerto Rico as well as in Payless' franchise stores located in the Middle East, Russia and The Philippines.   Silvia Tcherassi for Payless is the first designer label that will be broadly available at Payless stores in Latin America.  

"Colombia has been an important market for Payless since we opened our first stores in the country more than three years ago.  In Colombia we have found an inspiring and influential fashion industry, vibrant fashion-forward customers who appreciate Payless and all we have to offer, and Silvia, our latest design talent who will join us in our mission to democratize fashion with her international flare, innovative designs and sophisticated style," said LuAnn Via, CEO of Payless ShoeSource.  "We are delighted by this new partnership and can't wait to see the positive customer reaction -- across the U.S., Puerto Rico and Latin America -- for this latest Payless designer label."

The Payless Designer Collections feature original designs created by fashion designers based in New York City and other international fashion centers. This select group of fashion designers create designer footwear and accessory collections for Payless featuring the latest runway and red carpet styling details offered at value prices.   Each collection is unique and reflective of the designer's signature style and design aesthetic.

About Payless and Collective Brands

Payless ShoeSource, Inc., a unit of Collective Brands, Inc., is the largest specialty family footwear retailer in the Western Hemisphere and is dedicated to democratizing fashion and design in footwear and accessories for all to enjoy.  Payless offers customers a range of well-recognized brands such as Dexter®, Airwalk®, Champion®, Above the Rim® and Smart Fit®, as well as designer labels by Christian Siriano, Lela Rose, Isabel Toledo and Silvia Tcherassi.  As of the end of  2010, the company operated nearly 4,500 stores throughout the Americas and an online store (www.Payless.com) and also has more than 60 franchised stores located in Asia, Eastern Europe and the Middle East.  

Collective Brands, Inc. (NYSE: PSS) is a leader in bringing compelling lifestyle, fashion and performance brands for footwear and related accessories to consumers worldwide. The company operates three strategic units covering a powerful brand portfolio, as well as multiple price points and selling channels including retail, wholesale, ecommerce and licensing. Collective Brands, Inc. includes Payless ShoeSource, focused on democratizing fashion and design in footwear and accessories through its nearly 4,500-store retail chain, with its brands Airwalk®, Dexter®, Champion®, Zoe & Zac™, the first-ever affordable green footwear brand, and designer collections by fashion designers Christian Siriano, Lela Rose, Isabel Toledo and Silvia Tcherassi; Collective Brands Performance + Lifestyle Group, focused on lifestyle and performance branded footwear and high-quality children's footwear sold primarily through wholesaling, with its brands including Stride Rite®, Keds®, Sperry Top-Sider® Robeez®, and Saucony®, among others; and Collective Licensing International, the brand development, management and global licensing unit, with such youth lifestyle brands as Airwalk®, Above The Rim®, Vision Street Wear®, STRIKEFORCE™, Clinch Gear™, Sims®, Lamar® and LTD®, World Snowboarding Championships™ and Hind®. Information about, and links for shopping on, each of the Collective Brand's units can be found at www.collectivebrands.com.

About Silvia Tcherassi

Originally a native of Baranquilla, Colombia, Fashion designer Silvia Tcherassi is considered one of the most creative, innovative and versatile personalities in the world of fashion over the last 20 years. Her apparel designs include ready-to-wear, wedding gowns, accessories and now shoes through a collaboration with Payless ShoeSource.  Her style has been defined by the Dizionario della Moda as eclectic, her clothes, as having the delicateness of a ballet dancer, while at the same time, the strength of a rock star. Her pret-a-porter gave rise to the concept of demi-couture while her wedding gowns have become the perfect vehicle for her creative talent.  

Her approach to fashion has made her deserving of important international recognition, including her receipt of the prestigious designation of "Chevalier de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres" by the French Government; an honor bestowed on leaders of the international arts community for their "contribution and commitment to cultural service."

Searching to expand her vision beyond fashion, in October of 2009 Tcherassi opened her first namesake luxury hotel in Cartagena, Colombia, to much critical acclaim as part of the new Tcherassi Hotel Collection. The property was named one of the "Best New Hotels" by both Travel + Leisure and Conde Nast Traveler, as well as being noted as one of the top "Designer Hotels" by Town & Country and Smart Luxury Travel. With the hotel design, Tcherassi successfully translated her fashion concepts into the design of spaces and the creation of experiences. In March of 2009, Random House published her first book "Elegancia sin esfuerzo" (Effortless Elegance) about her approach to fashion and style.

For more information, visit www.silviatcherassi.com.

SOURCE Payless ShoeSource



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