Fashion houses were particularly active this season, enticing consumers with pop-up stores on both sides of the Atlantic. In Milan, Chloé, which has no monobrand boutique in Italy, took up temporary residence at Corso Como to give a platform to its 16-piece reedition collection, part of its 60th anniversary festivities.
“It’s been so successful, we’ve realized New York is the place to be. It’s a very strong market for us,” says Bruno’s Marie-Anne Capdeville. “We will keep the pop-up until June at least. If we can’t stay longer, we will find something else for sure.”
Pop-ups are as fun as they are convenient. The idea is “to create a little buzz around a brand, without the long-term risks and investments of a permanent retail outpost. It’s also a kind of cost-savvy solution to get a foot in the market,” explains Japanese designer Miharayasuhiro, who feted his first pop-up in Paris’ Joyce Gallery with a koto concert and sakura liquor during fashion week. He calls it “a communication strategy to import our concept to Paris and be able to show our complete collection, as we do in Tokyo.” This included exclusive pieces the designer produced in collaboration with Bette Ridgeway and Jun Inoue, with which he “managed to attract some new clients who didn’t know the brand.”
Also at the Joyce Gallery, Mugler showed off its first handbag collection, before it officially hit stores around the globe. The brand plans a second pop-up at the Gallery, which will run until May 31, to present its summer ready-to-wear line for men and women.
Dior orchestrated not one but at an entire series of temporary boutiques around the globe—starting with Colette in Paris. The brand was looking for something different to introduce Raf Simons’ fresh take on its codes to a wider, preferably younger, audience.
Topshop’s chief marketing officer Justin Cooke explains he always has the next generation in mind when popping up some place. “Pop-ups give us the opportunity to test and play before we have our own physical space [and they] help us engage with a new customer.”
Cooke tested the strategy in Chicago and Los Angeles, where the British retailer “built up a strong local customer” before the actual store opened. Last year, the brand launched topshop.fr, an e-commerce site in French, which he says “is growing at a rapid rate.”
“We also see a huge number of girls coming from Paris just to shop on Oxford Street, so we know there is a huge appetite for the brand and we [wanted] to understand that better,” he says, adding that “pop-ups definitely create a buzz and almost always sell through all the stock, creating higher demand.”
There is only one disadvantage, cautions Colette’s forward-thinking Sarah Andelman: “Too many pop-up shops kill pop-up shops. Now I’m not sure we can still use this expression.…” Andelman cites “a show” on “Keith Haring & Fashion” running at Colette until May 3. “We’ll carry many Keith Haring products in our gallery space, so it’s a kind of ‘pop-up shop,’ but we don’t announce it this way anymore.”
“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