Skirts created by Middleton women keeps you warm while you stay fashionableWhen temperatures dip, the aesthetic sense of even the most fashionable Midwesterner tends to head south. But RubyJupe skirts offer an option for those who yearn to stay toasty in that middle ground between puffy parka and furry boots.
By: By Jeanne Kolker, The Wisconsin State Journal, Superior Telegram
When temperatures dip, the aesthetic sense of even the most fashionable Midwesterner tends to head south. But RubyJupe skirts offer an option for those who yearn to stay toasty in that middle ground between puffy parka and furry boots.
RubyJupe skirts are insulated outerwear that zip on over clothes for a look that's "sporty and fashionable," said Midori Shaw, who, with her Middleton neighbor Danielle Boorstein, founded RubyJupe. Their endeavor is named for the gemstone ruby and the French word for skirt, jupe.
The skirts, billed as "outerwear for everywhere," come in three lengths -- mini, midi and maxi -- and each zips on like a jacket so there's no step-in situation. Each features zippers to adjust the skirt to accommodate varying strides.
Boorstein said she and Shaw wanted to design a product with a silhouette to flatter all shapes.
"We really believe that everyone looks good in these skirts," she said.
Boorstein and Shaw came up with the idea for RubyJupe in 2010, and started from scratch, searching for the right fabric and a manufacturer in the U.S.
The skirts are available through the company's website, rubyjupe.com, and at various retail outlets in Madison and Middleton.
Stacey Weber, a manager and buyer at A Stone's Throw on Monroe Street in Madison, said that the story carries the RubyJupe skirts because "we thought they had a neat concept."
The "Made in the U.S." stamp doesn't hurt, either.
"We feel that people in Madison are savvy about where things come from," Weber said, "so we like to carry locally made items."
Weber said that customer reaction has been interesting to watch.
"People either get the concept right away and love it, or it takes some explaining," she said. Customers range from women who spend a lot of time on the sidelines at hockey games or football games to women who like a little warmth when walking the dog without having to get fully outfitted, she said.
Tammy Reed of Middleton owns a RubyJupe maxi skirt and wears it over yoga clothes to avoid being "overexposed in my stretchy pants," she said. She said she also wears it to spring lacrosse games over jeans "to stay warm and look stylish."
Boorstein said the reaction to the RubyJupe products has been positive.
"We've had customers from age 12 to age 70, and so far our only marketing has been word of mouth. It seems to be working really well," she said.
RubyJupe's insulated, lightweight and water-repellent skirts range in price from $88 to $128 and are available in black.
(c)2012 The Wisconsin State Journal (Madison, Wis.)
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