Common Thread

Stacey Bendet definitely has a knack for designing, but she credits her team with being the brains behind her business.
2 min read

Vital Stats

Stacey Bendet, 30, of Alice + Olivia in New York City


Women's contemporary clothing company

Making the Cut

In her New York City showroom, Stacey Bendet looks collected and cool, seated cross-legged on a yellow beanbag, BlackBerry in hand. Once a website designer, Bendet is now known for a different kind of design: cashmere sweaters, tailored tops and minidresses. Described by Bendet as "quirky and sexy but wearable," her creations are available in more than 500 stores worldwide and have been worn by the likes of Angelina Jolie. Sitting pretty but far from sitting still, Bendet just opened two more retail stores, bringing the total to seven; launched a children's clothing line as well as a shoe line in collaboration with Payless ShoeSource; and is creating a line of home furnishings. Says Bendet, "I love making things."

Back to Basics

Bendet's first stitch to success started with a simple pair of pants. With a father in the fabric industry and a tendency to make her own clothes when she was growing up, she stayed true to her character when she spied a bold striped upholstery fabric and hired a patternmaker to create a fun and crazy pair of pants. Wearing them out sparked buzz, and when a friend asked her to do a fashion show, the designs caught the attention of a Barneys New York representative. Her signature striped pants collection, Just Pants, launched at the high-end department store soon after in 2002, and, just like that, Bendet had a flourishing business under her belt.

Perfect Fit

As her fashions fly off the racks, Bendet has kept her ego in check, carefully choosing employees who can move the company forward. "I've always felt that the best managers hire people who are better than themselves," she explains. "My president is better than me, and that's what I've tried to do in every department."

More from Entrepreneur

Grow Your Business at Entrepreneur LIVE! Join us on Nov. 16 in Brooklyn, NY, to learn from legends like Danica Patrick and Maria Sharapova, pitch our editors, meet with investors, and potentially walk away with funding!
Register here

One-on-one online sessions with our experts can help you start a business, grow your business, build your brand, fundraise and more.
Book Your Session

Whether you are launching or growing a business, we have all the business tools you need to take your business to the next level, in one place.
Enroll Now

Latest on Entrepreneur

My Queue

There are no Videos in your queue.

Click on the Add to next to any video to save to your queue.

There are no Articles in your queue.

Click on the Add to next to any article to save to your queue.

There are no Podcasts in your queue.

Click on the Add to next to any podcast episode to save to your queue.

You're not following any authors.

Click the Follow button on any author page to keep up with the latest content from your favorite authors.