Seventeen magazine is aiming to become a fashion brand too — and it’s linking with Sears to try to get there.
The Hearst publication, which targets teens and young women ages 15 to 24, is partnering with Sears to create a full line of clothing, shoes and accessories. The collection will be sold in 500-square-foot Seventeen-branded shops-in-shop in Sears’ 10 flagships and 500 additional Sears doors. The shops will feature Seventeen signage, interactive elements, charging stations and image pieces. The Seventeen collection will launch in July.
“We think this is going to be a big win for us,” said Sheila Field, chief marketing officer of Sears Apparel at Sears Holdings Corp. “We’re going through a transformation in our apparel and fashion business and there is more to come. This is ongoing.”
Glen Ellen Brown, vice president of Hearst’s brand development group, said Seventeen chose Sears because “it’s this big full-line retailer and our whole objective is to be able to distribute where people can find us very quickly. This young woman is so digital and so interactive. Sears has spent money to make that capability happen in their stores. We know that [the reader] is also inspired by brick and mortar.
“We wanted a partner that is a design house and has its eyes on what’s happening and where trends are emerging,” Brown added. “We wanted deep expertise on the manufacturing side. We figured out this is where we should be. We’re not exclusive. It was important that we found the right place at retail.”
Seventeen is Hearst’s first apparel and accessory brand “of this magnitude” in 70 years, Brown said. “We’ve been doing bedding for 15 years. Hard goods is new with lamps, poufs and storage ottomans. We also do fun chocolate bars and other confections.”
Hearst has been especially eager to harness its brands’ commerciality. Elle has been selling a contemporary line of women’s clothing at Kohl’s since 2007.
For Sears, the Seventeen tie-up represents a major move to boost its fashion cred and appeal to teens. Eddie Lampert, chairman and chief executive officer of Sears Holdings, has been proclaiming how the department store chain is rewriting the rules of retailing via its various digital initiatives. But Sears’ losses continue to mount and many observers remain skeptical of Lampert’s vision for the chain. Sears Holdings Corp. in the fourth quarter reported a net loss of $358 million, or $3.37 a diluted share, for the three months ended Feb. 1. Revenues decreased 13.6 percent to $10.59 billion from $12.26 billion. Comparable-store sales fell 6.4 percent, reflecting a 7.8 percent drop at Sears’ domestic stores.
Lampert has been pushing the innovative aspects of Sears’ Shop Your Way, a free and instant member-based loyalty program and online shopping community that offers coupons, customized deals, social sharing, wish lists and shopping with celebrities. The program will feature exclusive content for Seventeen apparel. “Seventeen will have its own brand page,” Field said. “You’ll also be able to create your own catalogues of items you like and share those catalogues with friends. We’ll be tapping into Seventeen’s great readership and using all the Sears channels, especially digital and social, to target this consumer.” Seventeen has 14 million readers.
The collection ranges from items for the school girl to the college student and beyond — Seventeen is the number-one brand on college campuses for freshmen, said Brown, adding that its sweet spot is around age 16.
There’s a hearts-and-roses theme with flowers on cropped tops, skirts and dresses; plaid shirts worn with blazers, and dresses shown with military jackets for a bit of an edge. Field said there’s also lots of lace and a boho theme.
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