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Soul Sister creates new home division, expands services

New York -- Soul Sister has formed a new division for its growing home business, and along with it expanded the breadth of services the company has to offer the industry.

The new division is poised to provide product design, research, and development - all with a keen focus on innovation, including original prints, new fabric technologies, branding and marketing. Additionally, Soul Sister provides domestic manufacturing capabilities for home textiles products.

Company president and creative director Judy Vella is a 20-year veteran of the textiles industry, originally starting out in apparel. In 2000, she launched Soul Sister as a domestic manufacturer of fashion sleepwear.

The in 2005, she added a line of coordinate decorative pillows to her line - representing her foray into the home side of the textiles business.

"The dec pillows were very popular, and were a natural product extension that added more value to the brand and expanded its reach," Vella explained to HTT. "They helped create a Soul Sister lifestyle, and also they are what got us into the home stores.

Today, Soul Sister's philosophy "is simple," she said. "We serve clients by learning their business, knowing their competition and understanding their target audience; then, creating the products and support materials necessary to launch a successful brand. Companies know that they need ‘entrepreneurs' to help them get to the next level. We can ‘hit the ground running' in a very low-maintenance way."

At the New York Home Fashions market this week, Vella said Soul Sister is "behind many of the home collections, new technologies and new products being launched."

And several existing home collections developed earlier by Soul Sister are currently on store shelves at major retailers, including one home textiles specialty chain and two high-end department stores.

"We felt our company expansion was necessary due to the increase in requests we've received, specifically from bedding companies looking for high end design and performance products with innovation and added value," Vella said.

An important component of Soul Sister's strategy centers on domestic production, and Vella stressed that all of the company's manufacturing and developing of new products and applications is done in the U.S., and any technology developed is tested and certified at an accredited U.S. lab.

In the pipeline on the innovation side is a newly developed product Vella said will "revolutionize the way people protect, care for, and enhance the quality of their bedding and sleep environment." As co-inventor of this USA-made, patent-pending innovation, Vella has authored a technical paper on the project, which has been submitted to several journals for publication this summer. Currently in talks with a major retailer, Vella is forecasting a spring/summer 2012 launch for this product.

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