GAP NAP: Walloped by a 13 percent drop in its international operations, Gap Inc. saw comparable-store sales for September decline 4 percent, the same pullback experienced by the Gap North America unit. That wasn’t only the steepest drop registered by any of the major retailers reporting monthly results on Thursday, but it took a huge bite out of the entire specialty apparel sector’s results. Thomson Reuters put the increase for the category at 2.9 percent, a figure that nearly doubled — rising to 5.6 percent — when the San Francisco-based giant’s results were excluded.
YOUTH WAS SERVED: The biggest players in teen retailing all have bowed out of monthly comp reporting, but the second tier of the category put up strong numbers last month. The Buckle Inc. and Zumiez Inc. not only posted the period’s third- and fourth-best numbers, with respective increases of 10.3 percent and 10.1 percent, but also provided September’s two largest upside “surprises,” with Zumiez 6.9 points and Buckle 6.6 points better than anticipated. Only Victoria’s Secret parent Limited Brands Inc. (up 11 percent) and Costco Wholesale Corp. (up 12 percent, including fuel) performed better overall.
PRICE FATIGUE: Much was made of the potentially detrimental effect of rising prices for cotton and other commodities going into the fall season, but the effect was a bit muted as September results cascaded. However, Tony Buccina, vice chairman and president of merchandising at The Bon-Ton Stores Inc., did note “lower sell-throughs on selected ladies’ and men’s apparel where cost increases had resulted in higher retail prices” as his company reported a 3.6 percent decline in its comps for the month.
“Azzedine has been one of the biggest influences in my life. He has always been such a strong, loving, fatherly figure to me. I call him Papa. His designs are indescribably unique, they are pieces of art. He knew how to make the female form look its loveliest. I have so many memories of him; my favorite might be during my first show with him in Paris. He liked me and he wanted to help me get more work. He called all his friends at Kenzo and Comme des Garcons, and asked them to book me. They said, ‘But she can’t walk!’ And he said, ‘but she has such a great ass!' His friendship and support has been the great privilege of my career. I can't imagine life without him. Repose en paix mon Papa.” - @stephanieseymour tells @wwd. #wwdfashion (📷: @steveeichner) #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa, flanked by two of his closest friends, models Stephanie Seymour and Naomi Campbell.
He designed Seymour’s dress for her 1995 wedding to Peter Brant, and treated Campbell (who famously called him Papa), like a daughter. For more on the legendary designer, tap the link in bio. #wwdfashion #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa's “I-did-it-my-way” ethos stood out starkly at a time when brands are experimenting with consumer-facing fashion shows, coed formats and trans-seasonal collections – anything to perk up lackluster sales of ready-to-wear in an age of Insta-everything. “It’s not creation anymore. This becomes a purely industrial approach,” the late designer told WWD in an interview last year. “But anyway, the rhythm of collections is so stupid. It’s unsustainable. There are too many collections.” Read more about the iconic designer’s life and work on wwd.com, link in bio. #wwdfashion #azzedinealaia (📷: @WWD Archive, 1986) #alaia
Sneaker reselling app @goat’s latest exhibit, "The Greatest: New York," tells the story of New York's sneaker culture. To celebrate the exhibit, an intimate crowd gathered on Thursday night at the pop-up gallery space, located at Platform in Culver City, to hear guest speaker and illustrator @esymai talk about her own rise in streetwear and women in the business. "For me I'm just someone who is creative. I like to create things," said Chang. #wwdfashion
Azzedine Alaïa, one of the most iconic couturiers of the modern era whose body-con designs defined Eighties fashion, has died in Paris. The diminutive Tunisian-born designer, known for his structured knitted dresses with fitted waists and impeccably cut, figure-hugging second skin silhouettes was deeply admired by his peers, and counted supermodel Naomi Campbell - his adoptive daughter - among his inner circle, one of a gang of glamazons including Farida Khelfa, Carla Bruni and Stephanie Seymour who became ambassadors of his style. (📷: Alexandre Guirkinger) #wwdblast