By  on May 20, 2012

Last weekend, my teenage daughter and I set out for The Shops at Target. Knowing how fast exclusives move out of the stores, we wanted to get there to nab a few must haves (to go with my Missoni purse that nets me so many compliments) before the shelves were bare.

We joyously ran around the store looking for the various shops which include The Webster for apparel, Privet House for home items, Polka Dog Bakery for pet treats, The Candy Store for human sweets and the uberchic Cos Bar for beauty.

There was only one complaint — we wanted more. Each specialty retailer, with the exception of The Webster, which had several racks, was only one end cap. While realizing Target can’t reshuffle its entire store or give too much real estate to an exclusive, the tight assortments were a tease that left us wanting more.

Apparently, consumers crave more, too. Many of the end caps had a strong sell-through — especially Cos Bar and The Candy Store — only one week into the campaign.

At the Women’s Wear Daily Beauty CEO Summit earlier this week, Target’s Jose Barra, senior vice president, health care and beauty, suggested there would be more exclusives and sure enough the next round was announced this week including The Curiosity Shoppe, Patch NYC, Kirna Zabête and Odin. The next wave is scheduled for Sept. 9.

Barra pledges more beauty exclusives to come for Target and mentioned that in 80 limited collections Target has had, only two — Missoni and Calypso — had some beauty items. “Beauty has been slow because companies brand for channel rather than consumer. We have an opportunity to do more to move the needle,” he said, indicating beauty will play a bigger role. Barra said Target wouldn’t rule out bringing The Shops together in a pop-up-style shop within stores, a strategy that would certainly lend more impact, but perhaps not drive consumers to the department location in the store. He also praised how much an impact Sonia Kashuk’s (Kashuk was in the audience) line has made at Target.

Also attending the gathering was Lily Garfield, founder and chief executive officer of Cos Bar, who voiced encouragement for others approached by Target. While admitting she was leery at first of teaming up her prestigious name with a mass retailer, she praised the team that came into the store and curated items suitable for Target. “I highly recommend working with them to anyone,” she said.She added the assortment at Target zeros in more on body.

Target must be pleased enough with the initial Shops to move forward. Beauty’s role in the format with unfold.

People, Places and Things

A few words with Paul Murphy, general manager of Sinful Colors about the direction of Sinful following the acquisition of its parent by Revlon.

WWDBeautyNews: What message is Sinful delivering to retailers in this time of explosive nail growth?
Murphy:
Our message remains color! We also present great quality at a good value. We constantly update our shades and we have different monthly counter events. Also, all of our products are produced in the USA.

WWDBeautyNews: Are there plans to expand beyond nail?
Murphy:
Nail is our focus, but we don experiment with related items in some of our counter promotions such as lip.

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