PARIS — Cacharel, the French brand known for its spirited contemporary sportswear, has opened a new men’s shop here that house founder Jean Bousquet said is emblematic of his desire to rev up that segment of his business.
“Men’s has been asleep at Cacharel,” said Bousquet as he surveyed the store here at 21 Rue d’Uzes, on the Right Bank. “This store is part of our will to bring it back to life in a strong way.”
Earlier this fall, Bousquet inked a licensing deal with B2xX, the Jersey City trading company, to exclusively distribute its men’s, women’s and children’s apparel and accessories in the United States and Canada. He said men’s would be a strong priority in the American market, but not with stand-alone stores.
“We want to build all our business in the U.S., particularly the men’s,” said Bousquet. “We think there’s great potential for the brand in the U.S.”
In recent years, Cacharel, which has revenues of around $50 million, has had mixed success in energizing its youthful and colorful take on fashion. Earlier this year, for example, the house parted ways with its artistic directors of seven years, Suzanne Clements and Inacio Ribeiro, replacing them with 33-year-old Esther Angula. But Angula’s stint was short-lived. This month Cacharel hired Mark Eley and Wakako Kishimoto, best known for their print design and fabric development, as its new artistic directors.
Although Clements and Ribeiro’s first collections—which were essentially for women, though they also cast an eye on men’s—were warmly received, the house struggled with pricing and positioning, especially in overseas markets. Meanwhile, it restructured and tried to liven up its women’s business by opening two new stores here.
The new men’s store underscores Bousquet’s commitment to trying to grow the house, which he founded in 1962. The 2,000-square-foot, loft-like space is located on a street, not far from the Paris Bourse and the Drouot auction house, that has attracted new retail attention. “It’s kind of like Soho here,” said Bousquet. “It’s going to be the next hot location.”
Last year, men’s designer Stephane Plassier opened a store called Gus on the street, merchandised with fashion, motorcycles and books. Plassier consulted on the Cacharel store and also designed some pieces for the fall/winter ’08 collection.
Among Plassier’s contributions was the idea of making the store “easy and livable.” There will be, for instance, an espresso machine, Internet access and comfortable sofas. Artwork by Jean-Michel Alberola decorates the space. Plassier also insisted on the store using reusable, eco-friendly packaging.
Bousquet has named the store La Chemiserie or “shirt store,” in a nod to the first boutiques he opened in the 1960s that were popular in France for their inexpensive liberty-print shirts. But the new store also sells suits, ties and knitwear, all reasonably priced. Suits, for instance, sell for around 300 euros; shirts around 50 euros and sweaters around 60 euros.
“We wanted good quality at a good price,” said Bousquet. “We wanted the store to be easy and comfortable to make the shopping experience attractive.”
Bousquet said the store should do about 1 million euros in sales in its first year. “It’s a pilot,” he said. “This store is to get the image and merchandising right.”
Bousquet said his ambition is to open another 20 La Chemiserie stores in France in the upcoming years. “I’d like to have three to four in Paris alone,” he said.
A new Joan Rivers coffee table book, titled “Joan Rivers Confidential,” gives readers never-before-seen photos and letters of the late comedian throughout her life. “Because of her drive to always be fresh, she kept records of every appearance, every performance, all the jokes that were used on TV, all the clothes that were worn,” said Rivers’ daughter Melissa. Here, Rivers poses at the “Tonight Show” in Tracy Mills in 1985. Read more about the book and see more photos at WWD.com. #wwdeye
After a career at New York hot spots like Narcissa, Dovetail and Nix, @chefjfraser has expanded to the West Village with The Loyal, a modernized take on an American brasserie. “And as I’ve gone through my career I’ve felt some departure from that kind of simple, straightforward [cooking]. This is meant to take on the idea of ‘what if the American brasserie was invented today?’” #wwdeye (📷: @chinseephoto)
@bellahadid and @lilyaldridge at @bulgariofficial’s celebration on Friday night, toasting the brand's new Peter Marino-designed flagship on Fifth Avenue. The two-part event included a cocktail party at the store followed by a dinner at a mystery location — the Met Cloisters. #wwdeye
From overseeing America’s fastest-growing speciality retailers to codifying cool, WWD talked to the women who are leading the way for the future of beauty. Check out our Instagram Stories to see how these women built today and are creating tomorrow. (📸: @hannah_khymych) #wwdbeauty
For @laperlalingerie's spring 2018 show, the brand chose to host their event at @thevenetianmacao. With Chinese megastars @bingbing_fan and @hubing in attendance, La Perla debuted a rock ‘n’ roll-inspired collection. The show marked the start of Sands Macao Fashion Week, which runs from October 19 to 24 — the city’s first such event. Pictured here are models backstage with glimmering eyes. #wwdfashion (📷: Cheuk-Yin To)
Trending for spring 2018: top stitch design. Gone are the days of stitch just for seams — designers are using the once-minimal detail to create strong decorative elements. (📷: Paola Testa; Styled by @andrew_shang) #wwdfashion
@tradesy is turning the concept of a showroom upside down with its new space in Santa Monica. Here, the company plans to hold events, art exhibits and a showcase rare fashion pieces like this Louis Vuitton boxing set. Get all the details on Tradesy’s first showroom on WWD.com. #wwdnews