Chicago’s gone ‘Fish’ing with new clothing line

By Meryl Fulinara

For a woman, style and comfort are two words that don’t typically fit together in terms of fashion and function. If by some chance the two converge in a piece of clothing, it’s considered a feat beyond belief. One Chicago clothing company is trying to accomplish both without sacrificing one or the other.

VFish has expanded from its online store to bring its contemporary and casual women’s clothing line to racks of women’s boutiques around the country. On Nov. 13, the company opened its flagship store at 2937 N. Clark St. in Lincoln Park.

The line was started by husband and wife duo Tal Moise, an online entrepreneur, and Amanda Moise, a former schoolteacher, who taught physical education. The two set out to produce wearable and chic clothing.

The clothing is basic but has a twist. VFish allows women to mix and match, as a lot of the clothes are solid color pieces, said Megan Luther, co-owner of Double Dutch Boutique in Baltimore, which carries the line. She said it’s a great starting point to add accessories and individualize the clothing.

The VFish line specializes in cropped jackets, casual tops, sweaters and elegant and sporty dresses.

“The styles are girly and feminine but casual,” Luther said. “It’s not a stuffy and frilly kind of girly. It’s a casual girly that you can dress up and dress down. The pieces are really versatile.”

Versatility in her clothing stems from Amanda Moise’s background as a physical education teacher.

“I like to make chic silk dresses, but I’ll add a razor back. Or I’ll design a knit dress with silk accents, but it’ll have a hood,” Amanda Moise said. “In that sense, I think the design itself and my background as a physical educator has had an influence on that design level.”

Although the line will continue to sell to local boutiques, the pair wanted to have a larger presence in Chicago and in their neighborhood. The Moises live a block-and-a-half from the store, which also serves as the line’s corporate headquarters.

VFish has also set up its warehouse and design studio where Amanda Moise comes up with her latest looks.

“The line is known to fit a variety of body types, which is the really good thing about it,” Amanda Moise said. “A lot of different women can wear the clothes and appreciate that it looks good in a size zero or in a 12.”

Apple the Second, 745 W. Howard St., in Evanston, Ill., is a contemporary clothing boutique that sells VFish. Owner Maria Von Meddy said the shop has been getting a good response to the line.

Von Meddy said VFish’s strongest suit is its comfort. A woman can wear clothing that won’t work against them if they are not a specific size.

“It’s a sophisticated line,” Von Meddy said. “I’m happy [for] her because [of] the things that she is trying to accomplish. [She wants to] make a woman look beautiful and emphasize all the beautiful parts of a woman’s body and personality, but at the same time has comfort in her clothes.”

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