Kimora Lee Simmons is adding Kouture to her design portfolio. It’s not the kind found on the Paris runways, or in the dictionary, for that matter. Not that grammar has ever applied in Kimora’s kingdom, high above Seventh Avenue on the 43rd floor, where the service stops just short of lifting her sedan chair-style when she wants to scoot closer to her interviewer. “No! You can’t lift me!” says Simmons, laughing like a teenager. “I told you about acting like that in front of people! They’re going to think I make you lift me!”
Once she’s perched in her preferred position, Simmons is ready to talk about Kouture by Kimora, her latest junior collection, launched in an exclusive deal with Macy’s earlier this month. “It’s very trendy, it’s very young and it’s very fun,” says Simmons of the line, which is priced from $19.99 to $34.99 at retail.
If that sounds similar to her other ventures — specifically Baby Phat and Fabulosity, the junior collection she does for J.C. Penney, Simmons said the difference is that Kouture is completely trend driven, rather than urban and streetwear related. Key items include rompers, blazers and studded leather jackets. And there’s the Macy’s angle, of course. Phat Farm has been with Macy’s for years, but Kouture is the first line Simmons has developed exclusively for the retailer, a process that was documented on her Style network reality show “Kimora: Life in the Fab Lane.”
“I wanted to do something that spoke to a different market for Macy’s,” says Simmons. “It sits in a different section. I wanted this to be crossover. I wanted this to be colorless and really about fashion. And it’s what I call recession proof. It’s really important to say that. You can get a cocktail dress with a bustier top and satin skirt for 30 bucks. You can get a great jean for $19.99.”
Kouture by Kimora is produced by Kellwood Co., which owns Phat Fashions, of which Lee Simmons is president and creative director. Kouture by Kimora is in 150 doors and online, and will be in 300 doors by July.
In the meantime, Simmons is focusing on “adding to my portfolio and cleaning up my licenses and seeing where to expand my business. I look at my life and my color palette of brand and products and really chose carefully where to place them, like a Kimora Lee Simmons Design Group,” she says, apparently coining a new title for her growing empire on a whim. “That’s a great term for the day.” Asked if it’s actually an official design group, Simmons glances at her team and says, “Yes, that’s my term. There. I said it in the microphone.”
@kith is moving into children’s. The men’s and women’s streetwear brand has launched Kidset, a Kith kids line located in New York at 64 Bleecker Street. The line includes mini versions of staple Kith pieces like the Astor bomber jacket and the Kith box logo sweatshirts, along with a wall that can display up to 120 pairs of shoes from @adidas, @newbalance, @timberland and more. #wwdfashion
“I just wanted to create this fully rounded character, but I do think what excited me most was just the opportunity to give a group of people representation that I feel needs it. I like to do characters in projects that stand for something and Karolina definitely does, so that was really exciting to me,” @ginnygardner says of her new role in @hulu’s “The Runaways.” Gardner plays Karolina Dean, a queer superhero, which is a rarity for @marvel. Read more about Gardner’s character on WWD.com #wwdeye (📷: @dandoperalski)
@heriethpaul and @gracebol have a moment on the @victoriassecret fashion show 2017. See every look from the runway on WWD.com. Link in bio. (📷: @giovanni_giannoni_photo) #wwdfashion #victoriassecret #VSFashionShow
“Azzedine has been one of the biggest influences in my life. He has always been such a strong, loving, fatherly figure to me. I call him Papa. His designs are indescribably unique, they are pieces of art. He knew how to make the female form look its loveliest. I have so many memories of him; my favorite might be during my first show with him in Paris. He liked me and he wanted to help me get more work. He called all his friends at Kenzo and Comme des Garcons, and asked them to book me. They said, ‘But she can’t walk!’ And he said, ‘but she has such a great ass!' His friendship and support has been the great privilege of my career. I can't imagine life without him. Repose en paix mon Papa.” - @stephanieseymour tells @wwd. #wwdfashion (📷: @steveeichner) #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa, flanked by two of his closest friends, models Stephanie Seymour and Naomi Campbell.
He designed Seymour’s dress for her 1995 wedding to Peter Brant, and treated Campbell (who famously called him Papa), like a daughter. For more on the legendary designer, tap the link in bio. #wwdfashion #alaia #azzedinealaia