The New Great Line

2 designers open up.

Emily Current and Meritt Elliott

After moving on from their eponymous label Current Elliott, fashion designers Meritt Elliott and Emily Current launched THE GREAT, a new contemporary women’s wear label specializing in denim and easy separates. Here, they talk about their favorite jeans, style icons, and more.

What is your favorite pair of jeans? Meritt Elliott: My vintage high-rise Levi’s bellbottoms. They never loose their shape and are the most perfect, worn wash. Emily Current: Vintage Levi’s 684s that I have had recut a bit and have been with me since college.

What jeans are you most excited about right now? Meritt Elliott: I love am loving THE GREAT’s Almost Skinny, which is has the slim and flattering leg of a skinny, but a slightly more relaxed and slouchy top block. Emily Current: A mid-rise jean with a straighter cropped leg like The Nerd Jean from THE GREAT.

What is the secret to the perfect jeans? Emily & Meritt: It’s all about fit! We like to buy the very same style of jean we love in three sizes—in our true size, one size smaller, to fit snug, and one size bigger, to fit slouchier.

Who is your denim style icon? Emily & Meritt: Tom Sawyer

What denim trend would you resurrect? Emily & Meritt: Marilyn Monroe’s dark dungarees that she wore while lifting weights as seen in Life Magazine. This image is in our book, A Denim Story, and is the perfect example of how such boyish jeans can feel so amazingly feminine.

What city most inspires your designs? Emily & Meritt: We are inspired by rural American towns where denim is incorporated into the lifestyle—from farmers to cowboys.

Photos: The New Great Line

Emily Current and Meritt Elliott.

THE GREAT Barn Jacket.

THE GREAT Nerd Jean.

“A Denim Story.”

THE GREAT Almost Skinny jean in black.