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Upstart start-up looks to stretch a point or two

An upstart entry, with its primary roots in fashion and apparel, is literally attempting to stretch into the slipcover business by stalking and sighting select retailers it believes are key to its introduction.

Stretch & Cover, the brand name and description for a line of expandable slipcovers, is the brainchild of Ernesto Cohan, the company's managing director. Using a variety of stretchable fabrics — including Spandex, Lycra and elastics — Cohan was able to fashion slipcovers that will fit virtually any shaped sofa or chair and snap back into shape during and after use. He's patented the product.

"Our main goal here is to re-upholster without changing the format of the furniture," he explained. "So if you have round lines, you'll keep your round lines; if it's squared off, it will stay squared off."

The more than 100 styles, colors and fabrics — including faux furs and pleathers, mingled with cotton, polyester and blends — cover three price ranges and a multitude of sizes. It's directed at a younger, "funkier" demographic, according to the company. "Not your grandmother's slipcover," the company pitches in trade literature.

Cohan said tests or placements were pending with a number of key retailers and shipments were scheduled to begin with Linen Source. All of the company's resources are being directed at selling into 42 targeted retailers, with a heavy emphasis on the specialty chains and department stores. At present, Cohan said he has no specific plans to show the product during market week in September.

Stretch and Cover operates out of Cohan's apparel showroom on West 39th Street in New York.

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