Fashion meets philanthropy as Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson, wifey, Grammy award-winning singer/songwriter Ciara and retail legend, former Lululemon CEO Christine Day cofound The House of LR&C aimed at democratizing fashion and making it more accessible to young people.
‘There has to be more to it than fashion”:
The brand, inspired by love, respect and care, through the “financially accessible” clothing line, for each purchase made will donate 3% to the Why Not You Foundation, Wilson’s non-profit centered on children’s health, education, and fighting systemic poverty.
The fashion house, which launched on Tuesday comprises Wilson’s existing men’s apparel line, Good Man Brand— launched in 2016, has witnessed massive revenue growth, it also hosts their new inclusive, sustainable streetwear brand, Human Nation.
“Being a brand that can speak to the consumer is really important in times like this,” says Day. “I took over Lululemon at the point of a financial crisis and had to find a way to resonate with consumers and as a result, we were one of the best stories during that time period. So a recession doesn’t scare me if you have the right story and right time.”
Christine Day, a veteran of the retail industry contributed immensely towards the growth of several companies including Starbucks. She is founder her own in Performance Kitchen, a food startup for which Wilson has been a brand ambassador. Day met the couple in 2014, but it was only until recently that they decided to team up..
“As it hit us with everything going on in America, it was critical for us as two African American business owners to really make a difference and be forward thinkers and leaders—not just in sports and music, but also in fashion and the things we really generally care and also wear,” says Wilson.
The project which will eventually encompass multiple labels, will begin with their sustainable streetwear line, Human Nation. “It is our goal to create good brands that embody love, respect & care. That’s why we created HUMAN NATION.”
The Wilsons aim to uplift their customers and community. “It’s really about how we can take sports, fashion, music, and democratize them to create opportunities for the next generation,” shared Wilson via Zoom. His wife echoed the optimistic sentiment. “This process has continually inspired me,” says Ciara. “We have a tremendous opportunity to impact with The House of LR&C, and that keeps me motivated.”
“Christine has a massive legacy within fashion, and she knew that this was going to be a significant project, one that could make a difference,” says Wilson. “We were excited to have such a legend on our all-star team.” Having an ally with decades of experience on hand to bounce ideas off of and collaborate with was an extraordinary asset. “Creativity is the easy part, it’s what comes naturally to us, but I’ve enjoyed learning the ins and outs of the business side,” says Ciara. “We wanted to do it right. There are a lot of technical things that go into the backend of this process. That’s where Christine and her knowledge has been extraordinarily helpful. She’s informing us and essentially empowering us as business owners.”
Working alongside a woman whose powerhouse career has influenced the omnipresence of yoga pants as well as the way we drink coffee was inspiring in itself. “I enjoyed seeing a female perspective of entrepreneurship,” says Ciara. “Christine is no joke; she’s super sweet, a loving mom, and a phenomenal person, but she has this confidence and fire inside of her. It’s been pretty amazing just seeing her in action.”
The Collaboration with Day for the couple was hinged on the promise of bringing something bigger. “We didn’t want this to be just fast fashion,” says Wilson. “We’re building on these core principles, the idea that behind this house, there is love, respect, and care. Each brand will have its own identity, but with that same [focus] on giving back.”
“We have that range. Whether you want to be a tomboy or soften things up, there are pieces within the collection that allow you to do that,” she says, noting that the clothing is size inclusive and works across gender lines. “Inclusivity was at the forefront of our design process; we wanted to speak to as many people as possible. I love borrowing Russ’ clothes.” The realities of 2020 also came into play. “We wanted to prioritize comfort right now as we’re all in our houses during this COVID era,” says Ciara. “The cool thing is you can wear Human Nation while you’re at home and then take it into the streets during your daily walk—having that flexibility was important to us.”