In 1992 Eileen Fisher moved her company from trendy Tribeca in Man- hattan to suburban Irvington in West- chester County. She wanted her son, Zack, to have a backyard to play in.
“I could come home and start cooking while he was outside playing,” shetells me. Well, she didn’t exactly cook, she admits, but she was at home. Only recently has she had time to get into cooking. She’s been a little too busy creating the burgeoning clothing empire that bears her name—with more than 60 retail stores, distribution through department stores and boutiques in 90 countries, a thousand employees, and over $350 million in annual revenues. But she’s overseen it all in the same spirit as getting that backyard for Zack. It’s domestic. It’s a family. It’s caring. Nobody lasts at Eileen Fisher, she says, if they aren’t kind.
The fashion industry has a hard reputation, conjuring images of NYC’s Triangle Shirtwaist Factory re in 1911, undernourished, underaged models, and heavily marked-up products man- ufactured in Third World sweatshops.
“We’re fortunate to have a sophisticated customer who under- stands the value of our clothes,” says Fisher. “There’s a price for lasting quality and sustainability. It should be industry…