‘Coveteur’ Co-Founder Redefines Modern Luxury With Her Comfortable Lifestyle Brand Sidia
Erin Kleinberg is a storyteller at heart.
So the fact that she is one of the original co-founders of the ambitious lifestyle site Coveteur, and co-founder and CEO of the Métier Creative branding agency, is perfectly in the image of this serial entrepreneur who has always been on the lookout for the latest trends.
Kleinberg’s most recent venture is also storytelling and it’s his most personal to date.
Sidia is a modern fashion brand that caters directly to consumers with a collection of kaftans and matching sets. But forget your preconceived notions about caftans: Sidia’s caftans are raised, chic and totally moody.
“It’s so much more than a kaftan,” Kleinberg says. “It’s a celebration of the stories that make and shape complex women in every sense of the word. Across cultures, races, origins, shapes, sizes and experiences. Our stories are plural, but our point of view is unique.
This is Sidia’s story.
As Kleinberg focused on his branding agency, Métier Creative (working with fashion and beauty-focused clients like Ouai, Stuart Weitzman, Versed and Megababe), his team felt inspired to create their own brand.
So, in August 2019, they smoothly launched a lifestyle brand called Out of Office as a test pilot to assess the market, collect product data and feedback, build community, and gain knowledge. from real customers. Out of Office presented the first generation of caftans, which have since become popular with loyal Sidia customers.
Out of Office has caught the attention of sites like Refinery29 (which called caftans the “cool girl’s fashion handshake”) and influential and fashion-conscious women like Eva Chen, Geri Hirsch and Katie Sturino. For seven months Out of Office sold caftans exclusively through Instagram DM – word of mouth was the brand’s most powerful sales tool. (The e-commerce site was launched in March 2019.)
Then, a year later, two major events happened that led to the “rebirth” or evolution of the Out of Office brand.
For starters, Kleinberg’s grandmother, Sidia, died after a five-year battle with stomach cancer.
And sure enough, the pandemic struck, causing not only uncertainty in Kleinberg’s life as an agency owner (as it was a time of global confusion), but also for the ‘Out of Office’ brand name. Takes on new meaning – and feels slightly deaf.
“As a result of the pandemic, many people were reluctantly ‘out of the office’ – including me. I had to lay off employees and simultaneously my grandmother passed away the same week Covid shut us all down, and it hit me – I’m going to rename this brand, Sidia. “
Make no mistake: while these kaftans may be considered the perfect loungewear for staying at home, Kleinberg didn’t design them with the new comfort economy in mind.
“Standardized sweatshirts for people are quarantined, but our kaftans allow women to feel the comfort of sweatshirts, while still looking perfectly suited for meetings and dressed without much effort. Cozy is the new luxury, and that’s what we are here for.
Sidia kaftans feature a deep V for breathability and a carefully thought-out blend of stretch and structure. They are chic, comfortable and confident at the same time – the perfect tribute to the matriarch of the family, the real Sidia.
“I decided to devote everything to Sidia, her legacy and her legacy, as well as her style and grace. She was strongly matriarchal – she led our family – and she was a Holocaust survivor who immigrated to Canada. I think the reason I love fashion and style so much is because of her.
Kleinberg’s grandmother, Sidia, was the epitome of courage and resilience, with a strong joie de vivre. She was also fond of design and architecture, and became a real estate agent later in her life, which led her to her other passion: knocking down houses. The brand’s Sidia sets are each named after the different houses she has lived in, “as a tribute to how Sidia has managed to build a life for herself in Canada – while still looking effortlessly chic,” explains Kleinberg.
In December 2020, Kleinberg expanded the ready-to-wear brand to include twin two-piece sets: “The wide-leg cardigan and palazzo pant jumpsuit is the elevated version of a classic tracksuit that will serve as our armor in 2021. “
(The luxurious feel and softness of Sidia kaftans and sets is due to a blend of bamboo, which is an Oeko-Tex certified fabric, made in a sustainable fabric factory.)
The Sidia brand tagline is ‘come home’ as they cherish effortless pieces that allow you to present yourself as the best version of yourself.
In the final moment of the “circle of life,” Kleinberg shares that she wore her Sidia kaftans while giving birth to her two children, and her grandmother Sidia wore her kaftan in her final days.
Sidia’s social mission is also woven into the fabric of the brand.
“We encourage women to embrace their personal history, be it joyful or painful, to take root and take root in order to be equipped for the future. Our social mission revolves around intergenerational trauma. As a Holocaust survivor, IRL Sidia experienced a collective trauma that was woven into her lasting personal and family legacy. We created the Sidia Stories Grant, a grant program that sponsors people to receive ongoing healing and writing therapy sessions. Sidia the brand also supports the India COVID-19 Relief fund.
Kleinberg also intended to create a trip with the experience of unboxing a Sidia package, to delight the customer on all levels. For starters, Kleinberg’s grandmother, Sidia, was superstitious, so there’s a red string woven into the sleeve of the ensemble’s cardigan. (The red string represents luck in several cultures.) The packaging also includes beautifully designed invitation cards that invite the recipient to reflect and share their story.
“For us, it’s an open invitation to reflect on where you come from. And it can be difficult, it can be easy, but we can relive our history, because everyone’s personal history is what makes the world go round.
It’s not Kleinberg’s first clothing brand – her innate fashion sense runs through her veins, and in 2008 she launched her eponymous fashion line, which was sold at retailers like Barneys (The Ultimate Moment “Pinch me”) and Nordstrom.
And while she loved selling her own line globally on the wholesale front, her heart ultimately was in the direct-to-consumer experience.
“The magic of DTC during our testing phase – when selling Out of Office – was like an adrenaline rush for me,” Kleinberg shares. “I love that the power is in people – with every sale our customers help create the building blocks, metaphorically and financially, for us to proceed. It’s so democratic and I love it!
The proof is in the numbers – here are some of Sidia’s recent milestones:
- sales doubled in the last three months
- doubled in new and loyal customers in the last three months
- Continue to have triple-digit growth in% over one year
- 85% of sets sold out within two hours of launch
- 100% depletion of major product launches within a week
For Kleinberg, having a range of only three SKUs is intentional. The strategy is to go deeper into caftans and sets by introducing new colourways and prints, rather than having a wide range of product assortments.
The third SKU dives into the beauty category: it is Sidia’s Cloud Nine headband, which is perfect for indulging in skin care, washing your face and applying a face mask, to simply relax at home with your hair pulled back.
“I love that we can start to own the oasis of your bathroom and closet. And that’s the space we really want to be in, ”Kleinberg explains. “After all these years of running Coveteur and seeing that intimate view of people’s closets and their little nightstand vanities, bathroom setups, and coffee tables – these are the moments in your ritual that we want to help enrich. So many brands want to be the ritual. With Sidia, we just want to be there with you, on your journey.
Kleinberg’s goal is not “to have people running around town with the Cloud Nine headband.” His goal is to create this range of accessories “which enriches your ritual”.
And speaking of lifestyle products that help create an oasis, Sidia’s Next Drop is a collection of two candles, in time for the holidays. (Kleinberg is also very intentional about Sidia’s “drop” cadence: there is a new product launch every month.)
Coming soon in mid-September: The Heathers, “a collection of deliciously soft bamboo caftans and Sidia sets in heather gray heather colors”, followed by new colors in October.
For Kleinberg, it’s all about lounging at home or outdoors, in an effortless yet elevated way.
“Our mission is to create objects with intention and beauty to help us live with ease, without restrictions.”