LONDON — Alexander McQueen is moving west of the Rocky Mountains.
The London designer has two new units planned: Las Vegas, which will open a few days before Christmas, and Los Angeles, which opens in April.
"It's the right time for us to strengthen our presence in the U.S., which has always been an important market for Alexander McQueen," said Jonathan Akeroyd, chief executive of the Gucci-owned fashion house. "New York already performs very well, and we want more of a branded presence in the U.S."
Both stores have been designed by William Russell and resemble the McQueen flagships in New York, London and Paris — which all look as if they've been carved from a hollowed-out block of white stone.
The Las Vegas unit will span 2,600 square feet and will be located at the Wynn Las Vegas Esplanade. It will be one floor, and carry the women's, men's, accessories and eyewear collections. The store opens Dec. 22.
Akeroyd said the brand already had a strong relationship with the Wynn; the collection was already selling at the Wynn's multibrand designer store. "And we wanted to roll out from there," he said.
In Los Angeles, the 3,100-square-foot store will be located on the corner of Melrose Avenue and Melrose Place. It is a new build. The storefront is glazed and rounds the corner with a curved, glass window, maximizing the light. There is also a large skylight at the entrance. There is private parking, a private entrance and a VIP fitting room.
Akeroyd said L.A. was a "logical move" for the brand because of its West Coast client base and regular celebrity dressing.
He added there were no more stores planned — at least for the moment — in the U.S. or abroad. In September, McQueen opened a 4,000-square-foot franchised store in Moscow, with local partners The Arts Group.
Although Akeroyd would not disclose sales figures or projections for the new stores, he did say accessories now account for 30 percent of total sales, with the rest coming predominantly from women's ready-to-wear.
"We only really launched shoes and bags three years ago, but it's becoming a key part of our business, and we hope the new openings will help continue that trend," he said.
@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