There’s a hip new label in Williamsburg — and it’s called PS 84.
The PTA has revamped the standard-issue logo duds in favor of brightly colored T-shirts with bold graphic prints and track suits with retro flare. Even those who aren’t affiliated with the school are taking notice.
“People come up to us in different neighborhoods and ask us, ‘What’s PS 84?’ ” says Sarah Srygley, one of the PTA co-chairs, who freelances for Finnish fashion maker Marimekko.
Two years ago, Srygley, a 43-year-old mother of two, and her PTA co-chair, Melissa Darling, started emblazoning a block-letter “PS 84” logo on tracksuits, beanies and trucker hats. Now, not only do the kids in the dual-language, K-8 school wear them, but so does their principal, who rocks the tees under black blazers to meetings with other school administrators.
The wares, priced from $10 to $40, include a black-and-white track jacket with racer stripes and slouchy dolman-style tops in bright colors with contrasting lettering. “We’re ’80s girls, so we love bright fluorescents,” says Srygley. After production costs, the money raised from sales benefits enrichment programs such as the school’s rooftop garden, musical instruments and karate lessons.
The standout items of the season are the bold beanies. “Sarah was like, ‘I’m seeing beanies everywhere! We can’t miss the red-hat trend,’ ” says Darling, referring to the ultratrendy toppers from streetwear brand Supreme, which opened a shop just steps from the school in October. “We’re not poring over magazines,” says Srygley. “We’re just looking at the neighborhood and seeing what people are wearing.”
The demand for PS 84 gear is so great that the PTA is considering opening an online store. They organization also enlisted design help from other creative PTA parents, including an artist, an underwear designer from Ralph Lauren and a graphic designer at retailer Joe Fresh.
“We really want their input on the right cuts of the T-shirts, what styles work well with different body types, things like that,” says Darling, 43, who has a first- and a fourth-grader at PS 84.
The PS 84 duds are inspiring other schools to spice up their style games. Williamsburg mom Francine Turone, who lives near Darling and has a son near in age to Darling’s kids, was so taken with PS 84’s swag that she revamped the “basic” hoodies and polos at her son’s school, Nest+M, a Gifted & Talented school in the Lower East Side, last year. She even used the same screen printer, BK Tees in Williamsburg.
“I went to a school that had uniform, and I loved them because there’s no competition,” says Turone, 39. “But kids today want to be stylish, cool and comfortable.”
And she’s considerate of different personal styles.
“Every time I do a new line, I make sure there are one or two items that are neutral and a few more that are a little more flashy,” says Turone, who works in p.r. “We have those kids who just want to sit in the corner and read and would never wear something bright, but kids who would lose their minds if they had to wear black-and-white.”
Her designs range in price from a $1 sticker to a $45 hoodie with gold foil bedecked with retro lettering and the school’s “+M” logo, which Turone calls “the cutest part of the name.” She’s currently channeling Rafael Nadal’s pink-and-black Wimbledon ensembles for an upcoming collection.
“I’m constantly drawing things, making notes,” says Turone. “It feels like a full-time job at this point.”