Cooper & Ella’s Kara Mendelsohn talks fashion, business and New York City style

For designer Kara Mendelsohn, fashion isn’t all about the big runway shows or flashy statement outfits worn once and tossed in a maybe/never dry clean pile.

Her line, Cooper & Ella, named after her two kids, sprouted from a desire to create a single piece, the “date top,” she said in her 39th Street showroom on Wednesday.

A veteran of major New York City fashion houses Calvin Klein, Michael Kors, Marc by Marc Jacobs and Thakoon, Mendelsohn capitalized on 18 years of experience and a constant request for going out tops to launch her own brand. 

“It’s hard,” Mendelsohn said of breaking into the fashion industry in NYC. “I think I had an advantage because I had already been working in the industry for 18 years and had 18 years of experience and 18 years of contacts rather than launching a brand straight out of school.”

 

Melissa Kravitz