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Springmaid makeover coming, Wamsutta brand burnished 

A bed of flowers on display in Springs’ New York showroom this week represents the relaunch of the brand slated for market week in March ’09.

At the New York Market -- Springmaid, the signature brand for the former Springs Industries and now one brand in a stable for the Brazilian-owned Springs Global, is set for a relaunch later this year as the new company looks to burnish its branded position.

“It is our largest marketing effort we will have going forward,” said Mette Odom, Springmaid marketing director.

Once broadly distributed during the era when retailers sought out national brands, Springmaid moved to Wal-Mart in 2000 -- a bold move at the time -- as something of a near (though not official) exclusive. With Wal-Mart shifting emphasis ever heavily toward private label and captive brands -- and with Springs Global looking to balance out its private label vs. branded business -- Springmaid will debut at the September market.

“Our ‘North Star’ is channel expansion,” acknowledged Leslie Gillock, vp brand management. Springs Global research shows the core consumer for Springmaid shops all channels.

But this week, the brand polishing spotlight falls on Wamsutta.

“We are reflecting the Springs we are today as well as the Springs we are going to become,” said Gillock. “We have a number of brands that are important to our heritage.” Research shows the Wamsutta consumer is a regular home shopper who will spend money on quality products, according to Springs.

The new Wamsutta “is influenced by lingerie, from the runway,” said Edward Cardimona, chief global creative officer. The positioning, he added, is modern and sensuous, grounded in foundation and cosmetic palettes.

The Wamsutta introduction this week also pulls together several threads of Spring’s forward direction: brand definition, innovation and ecological considerations. Many of the technologies are being extended across product categories:

  • Wamsutta Smart Comfort, displayed as a lush blanket, is a warm dry technology that removes moisture from the body;

  • Wamsutta Lofty Elegance, also show as an ultra-soft blanket, offers an anti-static story;

  • Wamsutta Essensuals sheets are constructed of a blended micro-sateen that offers the hand of a sateen with wrinkle-free performance;

  • Wamsutta Eco-Luxe is a pair of utility lines with an organic cotton cover – one has fill made of recycled water bottles, the other white duck down.

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