PARIS — It’s already looking like Bleecker Street, part deux.
Twin Marc by Marc Jacobs stores — the first in France — opened here this week on the Place du Marché Saint-Honoré, with a steady flow of young hipsters suggesting the American designer’s retail concept needs no translation.
“I think it’s going to be as successful as our stores on Bleecker Street, and they are very, very successful stores — some of the highest sales per square foot in retail,” said Robert Duffy, president of Marc Jacobs International, interviewed in the shadow of a giant swan paddleboat loaded with quilted tote bags. “It sort of solidifies what we are to a broader audience.”
He noted that the Marc by Marc women’s, men’s and “special items” stores in Manhattan’s West Village shift an average of 4,000 units a day.
The company-owned units in Paris, a 1,500-square-foot women’s store and a 600-square-foot men’s boutique, are situated in the corner of an ultramodern square with retail neighbors like Comme des Garçons Fragrance and American Apparel, all just a block away from the luxury shops on Rue Saint-Honoré.
Duffy said the brand, sold in French department stores such as Printemps, Galeries Lafayette and Le Bon Marché, already has a cult following in France, and word of mouth — rather than a glitzy opening event or advertising blitz — would drive traffic and business. “[Customers] love our company; they love our Web site. We have people who work in the company who have fans,” he noted. Indeed, the large-scale images of attractive young people dotted throughout the shops — some scantily attired — are employees.
Duffy said roughly 80 percent of the products for sale are exclusive to the Paris stores, including knit berets, Paris-logo rubber boots, swimsuits, costume jewelry, small leather goods and certain party dresses and fragrances. Two-tiered racks of ready-to-wear — a mix of winter and resort styles — line several walls, with all manner of accessories, art books and gadgets rounding out the selection.
Jacobs has stepped up his international retail rollout, with the Paris units among the 45 slated for this year. The majority of the company’s 200 stores are for the Marc by Marc Jacobs brand. Duffy allowed that business at the two-year-old Collection store in nearby Palais Royal is “flat,” but he characterized the Marc by Marc stores — with items starting at 1 euro and stock rotating monthly — as “recession proof.”
In fact, he said he hopes to ultimately expand on the square and open additional units for children’s wear and accessories.
“I’ll build it up like I did Bleecker,” he said, noting that demand at the men’s shop, already open three days, has been particularly robust, with items like colorful Stinky Rat T-shirts and jeans among the brisk sellers.
Duffy said Europe represents roughly 20 percent of the Marc by Marc Jacobs business, with the rest split between America and the Far East.
There'll be no rest for those headed to Europe for men's, as Paris just closed the gap with Milan. According to a provisional calendar released by the Chambre Syndicale, Paris Men's Week will now open a day earlier on January 16. See new highlights on the official lineup on WWD.com. #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: @kukukuba)
BREAKING: Jonathan Saunders is leaving @DVF. The designer has resigned from his position as chief creative officer of Diane von Furstenberg, the company said in a statement on Friday. At the time of his hire, von Furstenberg said Saunders’ arrival symbolized and facilitated her stepping back from the day-to-day duties that occupy the work of a full-time creative director. The British designer joined DVF in May 2016 and was in charge of all product categories. #wwdnews
For @versace_official’s spring ad campaign, the brand emphasized the archival prints from the spring tribute collection dedicated to the late Gianni Versace. Closing out the show were five of Gianni’s favorite models: Cindy, Naomi, Carla, Helena, and Claudia. Bowing on December 18, the new campaign is yet another tribute to supermodel-dom as the images by Steven Meisel are fronted by @iamnaomicampbell, @cturlington, @gisele and more. #wwdfashion
Four-time Oscar-nominated actress Annette Bening has been waiting 20 years to play Gloria Graham in "Film Stars Don't Die in Liverpool," which will be released on December 29. The movie about Graham – a Hollywood star known for her controversial relationship with a younger Englishman named Peter Turner – is based off a memoir Turned wrote. "She felt vulnerable to him, because she loved him, she really did love him. And anyone that we really truly are in love with, we re vulnerable to in a very deep way," said Bening. Read our full interview with the modern icon of an actress on WWD.com. #wwdeye (📷: @ninebagatelles; Styled by @cristinaehrlich)
The crisp white button down: a staple that can be dressed up or down and accessorized throughout the decades. Here, on a Art Basel-goer in 2017 on the left and on the iconic Audrey Hepburn in “Roman Holiday” in 1953 on the right. #tbt #wwdfashion (📷: Andrew Morales)
Known for her work with @victoriassecret, 25-year-old model @georgiafowler is raising her profile in Hollywood. Fowler stars in @vincecamuto’s holiday campaign, which launched in partnership with “Pitch Perfect 3.” “Almost every shoot with Vince Camuto, I’ve had to face a fear…It was definitely a challenge. I’m so grateful for it, though. I’ve always wanted to be a pop star, so that was the perfect chance,” Fowler said. Head to WWD.com to read about Fowler’s experience modeling, including at the #VSFashionShow, and her relationship with Nick Jonas. #wwdeye (📷: @jilliansollazzo)
EXCLUSIVE: Huda Kattan just became the first beauty influencer to land a major beauty deal. Kattan's business, @hudabeauty, has received a minority investment from private equity firm TSG Consumer Partners. The brand, which industry sources say is on track to do $200 million in retail sales for 2017, will receive support on product, retail and geographic expansion through the deal. Get all the details on the deal and read @_a_collins' interview with Kattan on WWD.com. Link in bio. (📷: @jgreenery) #wwdbeauty #wwdnews
Peruvian model @juanaburga_official – who is known for walking the runways of @rodarte, @viviennewestwood and @torybuch – is making the move to the big screen with drama “Los Últimos.” The film premiered in Argentina in November and arrives in the U.S. and Europe in 2018. On making the switch from modeling to acting, Burga told WWD: “It’s a completely different thing – a lot of people think it’s similar or try to connect things, especially like getting used to the camera or being looked at all the time or playing these different characrers, but film is a completely different story.” #wwdeye (📷: @jgreenery)
London’s newly opened @designmuseum will look back on the life and work of Azzedine Alaïa in a show that the designer helped to curate before he died of heart failure last month. The retrospective, which Alaïa had worked on with Mark Wilson, chief curator of the @groningermuseum, will look at the impact of his work worldwide. The show, “Azzedine Alaïa: The Couturier,” will run from May 10 to October 7. Read more about the exhibit on WWD.com #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: @zefashioninsider)