It's no secret that business is, well, tough. Of course, luxury customers aren't as susceptible to downturns in the economy as other shoppers, but they have to fill their Mercedes SUV gas tanks, too.
If there's one thing that jump-starts buying, it's new silhouettes that make whatever's in a woman's closet look so last year. It's no surprise, then, that retailers are dreaming about change in bold, living color. They want to see structured dresses, pencil skirts and fuller pants, the yin to yesterday's yang of baby-doll dresses, balloon-hem skirts and skinny jeans.
Clearly, stores will be writing orders with extra sharp pencils this season. Bergdorf Goodman fashion director Linda Fargo said she'll be looking for "trends compelling enough to inspire us to shop even in a tightening economy," while Julie Gilhart, vice president of fashion merchandising at Barneys New York, said she'll only be buying "great merchandise" and "the best of the best."
"It's a really hard economy," said Nevena Borissova, owner of the Curve boutiques in Los Angeles and New York. But Lori Hirshleifer, vice president of Hirshleifer's at the Americana Manhasset in Manhasset, N.Y., will not let the grim economy get her down: "I'm optimistic. I refuse to allow myself to feel like this."
Jeffrey Kalinsky, executive vice president of designer merchandising, Nordstrom:
I hope to see: Things that I'm not expecting to see. I want to be surprised. I'm feeling that there will be more sportswear and more separates, and pants will be getting fuller. With fuller pants, I like them skinny at the top and fuller from the knee down. Skirts are going to be more important, but we'll see more pencil skirts, fewer bubble skirts. There will be lots of knitwear with blazers being more knit than structured. The dress is going to be important, but in the pre-collection market, it didn't seem to be as predominant a trend as it had been. Looking forward to: The big buzz this week is going to surround Halston; Jonathan Saunders showing in New York, and Rodarte. Rodarte has become a global strength. They're young designers and deserve everyone's support. We're also supporting Chris Benz. Ken Downing, senior vice president and fashion director, Neiman Marcus:
I expect to see: The continuation of color and print; more body-conscious shapes, especially in dresses, and jackets with shoulder interest such as strong and sharp or rounded shoulders. Skirts will be important. Transitional weight fabrics are important to the Neiman Marcus customer and we are focused on fabrics and weights that speak to her lifestyle.
Looking forward to: The reintroduction of Halston, and welcoming Jonathan Saunders to the New York catwalks.
Julie Gilhart, vice president of fashion merchandising at Barneys New York:
I hope to see: Total creativity and great design. I would like to see designers not play it safe, but push the envelope in terms of presentation and the clothes. It could be a moment of great change, so I hope to see it begin to happen in New York.
Looking forward to: Shipley & Halmos' first presentation and Edun's Nocturne presentation. Narciso Rodriguez, Proenza Schouler and Rodarte had standout collections last [season]. I think we will see that trend being repeated.
People are buzzing about: Cute girl designers, such as Cate Holstein, are showing for the first time. Also, Lyell, Wayne and Liz McLean. Also, Alexander Wang's and Loden Dager's growing energy and L'Wren Scott's Purple Haze collection.
Go away: Marc Jacobs being late. I am channeling support to him to be on time.
Open-to-buy: Our open-to-buy is to only buy great merchandise. It's a time to really focus on what is necessary. To have a lot of everything is not cool, but to have only the best of the best is modern. Michael Fink, vice president and women's fashion director, Saks Fifth Avenue:
I hope to see: A lot of 'snap', some pizzazz, emotion! If we go through another gray-black season, I'm going to scream.
I expect to see: Tailoring that is more relaxed than last fall's polished look, but still put together. I'm obsessed with all of the chunkier knit stitches in lightweight yarns that I've been seeing — great layering options. Fearless, individual style with prints, luscious fabrics and bold jewelry layers.
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)