The clothing line went into production soon after Wallace's death, when many speculated that Wallace would become an icon for his generation and for future fiction writers.
"We wanted to make Wallace into something that would last forever," said Little, Brown marketing director Eileen Orange. "At first, we considered a cologne, but then we talked about it and we decided we needed to go bigger. I don't remember whose idea it was first, but it was pretty unanimous that we needed to turn Wallace into a complete brand identity."
Wallace's clothing line features baggy shirts for plus-sized gentlemen, scarves, stone-washed jeans, doo-rags, and simple black t-shirts. Designer tortoiseshell glasses will debut at EyeMasters early next year, coinciding with the release of Wallace's unfinished final novel, "The Pale King."
"Yeah, I wear DFW," said MFA-candidate Lorie Germaine. "I mean, it looks good, it's cheap, and they donate half the profits to Amnesty International, right?"
While Little, Brown has no plans to donate any of the profits from DFW to charity, they admit that it is a good idea and may consider taking such action in the future.
"Some students think it's ironic to wear DFW, and that sickens me," said novelist Jonathan Franzen, friend of Wallace and author of "The Corrections." "It's ironic NOT to wear DFW. The only authentic thing a true writer can wear are the clothes they wore on their first day of high school, when they thought it would be a good idea to look nice and make a good first impression."
DFW clothes may be designer, but they don't carry a huge price-tag. Available at stores like TJ Max and Target, DFW tries to find writers where they already shop.
"First we get Iowa on board wearing DFW, and then everybody else will follow," said Orange. "Styles change, but not human nature."
Posted by miracle on Wed, 01 Apr 2009 18:31:08 -0400 -- permanent link