Director, Apparel & Accessories Design

Posted 3.14.24
Seattle, WA
Who We Are:
At Brooks, we believe a run can change a day, a life, the world. Everyone who works here is a key part of our obsession to make the best running gear on the planet. We want our business — which also happens to be our passion — to be a place where everyone feels welcome and comfortable being themselves. Our company culture defines us, bonds us together, and drives our success. We live this culture daily through our brand values: Runner First, Word is Bond, Champion Heart, There is no “I” in Run, and Keep Moving. This means we always solve for the runner, do what we say we will, give it our all, are generous with our humanity, and find a way to keep moving every day, because joy is kinetic. 
Are you ready to help create something extraordinary?
Your Job:
The purpose of the Brooks Apparel and Accessories Design team is to design great running gear. Our gear has a singular goal in mind – to make sure each run is better than the last, a principle that guides every design choice we make. The apparel design department at Brooks conceptualizes, develops, and executes the visual identity of the brand’s clothing and accessories.
As Director, Apparel & Accessories Design, your leadership will be critical to the success of the Apparel team, focused on delivering innovative and industry leading seasonal product lines that reflect our Brand and business intention. Driving our overall Apparel and Accessories design vision, direction, and execution will be central to your responsibilities. You will work in collaboration with the Directors of Apparel Product Line Management and Development on brand direction and business leadership while planning long and short-term vision for all collections. You will balance a strong foundation of technical performance with style, color and trend to ensure that Brooks becomes the product of choice for every runner. You will lead a team that includes the Men’s Apparel Designer, Women’s Apparel Designer, Accessories Designer, Print Specialist and Graphic Designer. You will partner with the Footwear Design team to ensure synergy between the divisions and a cohesive presentation of the brand every season.
Your Responsibilities:
  • Apparel Design:
  • Develop a strong consumer-oriented point of view and lead design in executing the vision seasonally (concept ideation, overall direction, synergy across the brand).
  • Lead the Design of saleable seasonal product lines assuring that SKU, target cost and margin goals meet requirements set by the business for the seasonal range.
  • Demonstrate expert-level knowledge of current trends, color, technology and other design influencers.
  • Communicate and present design concepts and create presentation materials that effectively communicate those concepts.
  • Materials Research:
  • Establish yourself as a key contributor on the materials team in search of innovative fabric solutions.
  • Develop and maintain strategic partnerships with outside Vendors (both piece goods and trims) to identify and source fabrications to enhance performance and value of line.
  • Color Palette:
  • Close collaboration with cross functional teams on finalizing impactful seasonal palette.
  • Apparel representative on the Color Team to concept and create the corporate palette seasonally.
  • Demonstrate strong people leadership skills rooted in Connect, our leadership program, principles.
  • Promote Brooks’ Core Cultural Values: Responsible for team culture and keep a pulse on morale to proactively address any concerns.
  • Create an organizational design to align with business strategy and conditions.
  • Lead the Apparel Design team in the development of a collaborative culture that leverages the strength of individuals in the formation of a strong team.
  • Provide career-development planning, coaching, training and support teams to create and foster a culture of learning, personal development, curiosity and innovation. 
  • Model leadership behavior across the organization.
  • Lead 1–3-year Strategic Planning for Apparel and Accessories Design to set the team up to execute by developing clear guidance and expectations.
  • Drive long-term planning with Apparel Leadership to build teams, frameworks and systems that best support key initiatives, programs, and projects.
  • Support the VP, Apparel in developing the Apparel and Accessories vision and strategy aligning with organizational priorities, facilitating the organization’s business objectives, and ensuring senior stakeholder buy-in. 
  • Understand the company business strategy and translate strategy for Apparel and Accessories Design into functional plans and guide execution.
  • Work closely with product merchandising, development, and marketing counterparts to deliver industry leading products and stories.
  • Ensure alignment with Footwear Design to create synergies (graphic patterns, color palette, etc.), merchandising opportunities and transversal marketing concepts across product categories.
  • Ensure understanding by Product Marketing and Development teams of seasonal design goals and spot check to ensure on-time execution.
  • Concept and direct the development of Design point-of-view presentation boards and visual aids for seasonal collections to support the Merchandising and Sales Team efforts.
  • Oversee the Design team’s contributions for sales meeting preparation and presentations.
  • Employ formal and informal methods to gain insight and to research industry, market, consumer, and competitor trends to keep abreast of new technology, industry trends and consumer needs.
  • Practice unorthodox or atypical ways of solving problems and leading the design team to conceive innovative, leading-edge concepts/ideas.
  • Stay abreast of competitor and industry trends as it relates to color, fiber, textiles and trims both from a performance and fashion point-of-view.
  • Lead the development and management of the annual department budget.
  • Demonstrate extreme enterprise accountability in managing Apparel & Accessories Design.
  • Apply Brooks requirements around budget planning and capex documentation to garner resources necessary to evolve the team to meet business objectives. 
  • Align financial, people and business resources to functional roadmap priorities.
  • Lead the team and hold them accountable to delivering products lines.
  • Anticipate, communicate and proactively manage opportunities and challenges for Apparel & Accessories Design.
  • Bachelor’s degree in Design, Fashion, Marketing, etc., or equivalent combination of education and experience, desired.
  • 12+ years of apparel design experience (with a focus on performance apparel preferred)
  • 7+ years leading an Apparel Design team.
  • Exceptional management and people leadership skills, with a proven ability to effectively lead in a collaborative, team-oriented environment.
  • Proven experience creating and leading the execution of vision and strategy.
  • Excellent communication and organization skills
  • Must have technical consumer product design experience.
  • Current computer hardware, software, and design software proficiency
  • Strong presentation and communication skills
  • Proven ability to lead in a collaborative, team oriented environment.
  • A passion for the fitness enthusiast and active lifestyle
  • Excellent interpersonal skills that inspire and build trust resulting in effective working relationships across the company.
  • Keen attention to detail in planning, organization and execution of tasks, while still seeing the big picture and understanding how all of the pieces fit together and affect one another.
  • Ability to anticipate how a decision made can affect our customers, our partners, our products or other departments’ operations and/or morale; “connecting the dots.”
  • Demonstration of innovation and initiative – always looking at improving our products and processes while also displaying a willingness to dive into the details and help wherever necessary.
  • Passionate participation in Brooks’ sports activities a plus, overridden by the ability to understand and empathize with the runner to develop loyal, engaging relationships with our customers and the Brooks community.
  • Embraces and lives the Brooks values!
  • Travel 25-30% (Domestically/Internationally)
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