Cutwater, S.F., Wins Fashion Account

First Agency for Trina Turk

Chuck McBride is back in the fashion business. Trina Turk, the Southern California designer whose offerings are heavily influenced by vintage modernist apparel and jewelry, has picked McBride's Cutwater as her first agency.

The Cutwater executive creative director and principal, who has worked on brands like Ray-Ban, Levis, Persol sunglasses and Adidas, won the business after a review involving other undisclosed contenders. Cutwater will be responsible for the designer’s traditional advertising as well as digital, social and media strategy. Until now, Tina Turk has developed advertising in-house. The S.F. agency’s first work is expected in the spring of 2013.

Turk launched the brand in 1995 with her photographer husband Jonathan Skow, and opened her first boutique in Palm Springs in 2002. She has since expanded to seven locations and is distributed through retailers like Nordstrom, Neiman Marcus, Saks and Bloomingdales. Turk also collaborated with Bananna Republic for a collection this summer. 

As a creative person, McBride said part of the appeal of the account is Turk’s aesthetic sense, which draws upon influences ranging from 1960s and ‘70s vintage apparel and jewelry to modernist graphics and mid-century architecture.  Trina Turk also produces residential décor accessories and textiles.

“This is not just a fashion company, it’s more of a design company,” said the Cutwater founder.  “There is a tremendous aspirational quality and accessibility to it. She believes in great design for all. She doesn’t want it to be ubiquitous, but she doesn’t want it to be exclusive.”