Twenty years ago, Briarcliff resident Danielle Boecker-Primack and her business partner Clay Rosenberg started a company called Ultrafabrics. With their headquarters in Tarrytown, a warehouse in Elmsford, a manufacturing plant in Japan, and their global showroom in London, Ultrafabrics has grown from Westchester, into a truly global company. During this journey of growth, they’ve reshaped the world of premium, animal-free, performance fabrics – one surface at a time.
“Twenty years ago we started with two small collections and now we have almost 30”, said Nicole Meier, Director of Branding at Ultrafabrics.
With sixty employees in Tarrytown and fifteen in Elmsford, Ultrafabrics is firmly rooted in the River Towns. In addition, they work closely with both Pace and Westchester Community College (WCC) to hire interns. “Each year we bring on about 10-15 interns across all our various departments and we typically hire about 50 percent of those as full-time employees,” noted Meier.
How has a company as big as Ultrafabrics stayed under the radar for so long? In part because they are an “ingredient” brand, not a consumer-facing brand. Similar to Gore-Tex, Ultrafabrics is in many products and on several surfaces you use every day, but their name is not front-and-center. “You’ve probably seen or sat on our materials before, but haven’t realized it,” continued Meier. In fact, you’ll find Ultrafabric products in a variety of environments from luxury auto brands such as Land Rover, to office furniture produced by design giant, Herman Miller. Additionally, aviation, hospitality, marine, and residential are just some of the design savvy markets that Ultrafabrics serves.
Moving forward, Ultrafabrics plans to raise their profile, especially in the River Towns. They recently donated over 19,000 yards, of their Japanese made material to a variety of organizations in Greater New York. WCC in particular received a significant amount for their fashion design program. This autumn, Ultrafabrics are partnering with ArtsWestchester, and Brooklyn-based artist Amanda Browder, whose textile, fabric and weaving based works have appeared in exhibits in the U.S., Tokyo and Prague to wrap a building in downtown White Plains. “We’re reinvesting in the creative community here in the River Towns that have invested in us for the past twenty years” said Meier.
In addition, Ultrafabrics will work closely with other design sectors, such as fashion this year. “Fashion influences every market from interiors to automotive and aviation” said Meier. “After our participation in Salone Internazionale del Mobile in Milan in April, Ultrafabrics will be hosting several intimate prestigious events in our flagship showroom room for London’s Clerkenwell Design Week in May and come July we will be a sponsor of Helsinki Fashion Week, which is really exciting because they’re the first 100 percent sustainable fashion show and have banned leather for 2019. “We’ll be featured as an alternative to leather, and are truly excited to be working with well know global partners and premium brands”.
Not only are Ultrafabric products a great alternative to leather, but they offer other benefits as well. From comfort to durability. “We’re seeing a growing trend of people shying away from leather for ethical reasons,” said Meier. “But really the main reason we’ve had customers for so many years is that our products are so high-quality, offer unique sensorial experiences and are long-lasting.”