LONDON — Richard Nicoll is poised to lend Jack Wills, the British high street clothing and accessories brand targeted at university-age consumers, a dash of urban designer sophistication.
On Wednesday, Nicoll was named creative director of the brand, a part-time role, and he will continue to design his own label. He showed his fall collection last weekend at London Fashion Week, a mix of sporty shapes with opulent fabrics and details.
Jack Wills’ chief executive officer Wendy Becker said Nicoll’s collections have “a global appeal, but he is a British designer at heart and will lead the creative direction of our brand into its next important phase.”
Nicoll told WWD he was approached about a number of positions recently, but decided on Jack Wills because he thought that it was an “interesting and unusual choice,” and one that could provide a different experience from his own brand. “I feel that our aesthetics are separate, but I understand the existing Jack Wills DNA,” he said. “I can bring timeless, sport luxe with a playful, British edge.”
His first collection will be for spring 2015 and will drop in December.
Nicoll said he’s looking forward to learning about other areas of the business, “particularly the international retail sector” and “big-business product development.”
Jack Wills currently has 78 stores worldwide: 60 in the U.K. and Ireland; 11 in the U.S.; four in the Middle East, and three in Hong Kong.
“I feel that through my varied design experience, with Cerruti, Louis Vuitton, Topshop and Fred Perry, and with the support of Jack Wills’ amazing adviser network, which includes Rose Marie Bravo, I can bring something potent to the existing DNA,” the designer said.
The British-born, Australian-raised Nicoll is a 2002 graduate of London’s Central Saint Martins, and freelanced for Marc Jacobs at Louis Vuitton before striking out on his own in 2005. Nicoll made his debut at London Fashion Week in February 2006 and has shown every season since. In 2008, he was awarded three Association Nationale pour le Développement des Arts de la Mode prizes.
Nicoll, whose latest men’s and women’s collections were an ode to bright color and texture with street influences, said he planned to introduce “ready-to-wear values” to Jack Wills’ design process, and bring unity to the collection across all categories “so that whether we are designing a sweatshirt or a party piece, the collection sits together as a whole and can be worn as such — the way that people really wear clothes.”
@kith is moving into children’s. The men’s and women’s streetwear brand has launched Kidset, a Kith kids line located in New York at 64 Bleecker Street. The line includes mini versions of staple Kith pieces like the Astor bomber jacket and the Kith box logo sweatshirts, along with a wall that can display up to 120 pairs of shoes from @adidas, @newbalance, @timberland and more. #wwdfashion
“I just wanted to create this fully rounded character, but I do think what excited me most was just the opportunity to give a group of people representation that I feel needs it. I like to do characters in projects that stand for something and Karolina definitely does, so that was really exciting to me,” @ginnygardner says of her new role in @hulu’s “The Runaways.” Gardner plays Karolina Dean, a queer superhero, which is a rarity for @marvel. Read more about Gardner’s character on WWD.com #wwdeye (📷: @dandoperalski)
@heriethpaul and @gracebol have a moment on the @victoriassecret fashion show 2017. See every look from the runway on WWD.com. Link in bio. (📷: @giovanni_giannoni_photo) #wwdfashion #victoriassecret #VSFashionShow
“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