Sisters Kendall, Kiersten and Karlyn Tupper were connoisseurs of the “pants dance.”
That is, the not-so-subtle set of shimmies needed to slide into slim-fitting jeans.
But it wasn’t by choice.
The sisters often had trouble finding jeans that flattered their curves, built from years of sports training and conditioning. It was out of this frustration that the forthcoming Tenacity Jeans was born.
“No more feeling squeezed, constantly readjusting shirts to hide the puckered waist band, or grabbing the back of your pants to stop the gapping,” Kiersten says. “Gone are the days when we succumb to wearing leggings, jeggings and athleisure clothes, because the jeans do not fit properly.”
As lifelong sportswomen, the sisters spent their childhood outside of Syracuse participating in lacrosse, soccer, dance, figure skating and snowboarding. As adults, they continued playing lacrosse, Kiersten and Karlyn at the University of Connecticut and Kendall at Cornell University.
And it was after a summer lacrosse game that the sisters first played with the idea for Tenacity Jeans.
“(My sisters and I) joked around that we would design jeans for active females and call the company something cool,” Kiersten says. “This seed of an idea was planted about six years ago and has been growing ever since.”
The sisters decided on Tenacity Jeans, a name that reflects their drive for success. Despite living in separate areas — Kiersten resides in Kerhonkson, a village in Ulster County, while Karlyn lives in Syracuse and Kendall in Spokane, Washington — they don’t allow the distance to affect their goals.
“We view our business and ourselves as tenacious, and we are determined to deliver a great product for women like ourselves,” Kiersten says.
The sisters began experimenting with patterns and styles, eventually deciding on the ever-popular skinny-taper jeans, though their strategy for fit remained the same.
“We specifically engineered these jeans to accommodate for larger thighs and butts and taper for a smaller waist,” Kiersten says.
The brand made its debut on Kickstarter, an online crowd-sourcing platform, where the sisters have, thus far, raised $6,953. Though falling short of their initial $20,000 goal, they received valuable feedback about their product. When it came time for the production stage, the women-owned business chose to remain homegrown.
“Tenacity Jeans are grown and sewn in the United States,” Kiersten says. “Currently, our cotton and denim are sourced from mills in Alabama, North Carolina and South Carolina, and the jeans are manufactured in Texas.”
The jeans, designed for women of all ages, are made from a high-quality denim blend and include a contour waistband, as well as a feminine hygiene pocket (for an extra Tampon). The midrise style offers coverage, while the back — where the sisters often encountered a loose, flapping waistband — lays flat. Back pockets are purposely placed to highlight the derriere.
“Pure elation is an understatement when I put on my jeans,” Kiersten says. “No better feeling than when they seamlessly come up over my thighs and butt without having to do the ‘pants dance.’”
Tenacityjeans.com is scheduled to launch this fall, when it will offer jeans, sizes 2 through 14, in navy blue for $79.95. The sisters have plans to expand the sizes and colors, as well as develop a business casual line to include khakis and slacks.