Sass & Bide’s Founders Are Leaving Their Label

Photo: Mireya Acierto/Getty Images

It's the end of an era for Sass & Bide, the little Aussie label that could. The Guardian reports that founders Heidi Middleton and Sarah-Jane Clarke have left the company after 15 years at the helm. The company began as a stall selling that early 2000s favorite, customized denim, on London's Portobello Road, and got a boost when SJP wore their wares on Sex and the City in 2002. Christened after the founders' nicknames, Sass & Bide soon turned into a cross-continental enterprise, with the designers showing at Sydney, New York, and London fashion weeks. Australian department-store chain Myer bought 65 percent of the company in 2011, and acquired the remaining 35 percent last year, setting the stage for the duo's departure. According to a company statement that oddly refers to women in their 40s as "girls," “Both Heidi and Sarah-Jane have been slowly transitioning out of the business, and it has now reached a point where both girls feel confident that the business will go on to grow and thrive without their day-to-day involvement. The girls leave behind a rich legacy of creating a brand that is built on spirit and heart, qualities that are deeply etched in the collections, the communications and its people." However, the show will go on: Anthony Cuthbertson, a veteran of Ralph Lauren and Joseph, has already been appointed as the label's new design director.