PARIS — Acne Jeans is storming two fashion capitals at once.
The edgy, Stockholm-based brand has set flagship openings for today in New York and Paris. The label is launching its first locale outside Europe at 10 Greene Street in New York's SoHo. Its boutique at 124 Galerie de Valois in Palais Royal, one of Paris' most elegant and hottest retail addresses, will open just hours earlier.
"It's ideal — key cities and fantastic locations," said the company's president, Mikael Schiller. "Acne is involved in so many creative disciplines, we wanted to show the same creative energy in our shops."
Acne has a knack for settling on unexpected locations. Its Stockholm flagship is in the former bank where hostages were taken in 1973 and the term "Stockholm Syndrome" was coined. And the brand's palatial new headquarters in the center of the Swedish capital is in a 17th-century residence once owned by the aristocratic Wallenberg family.
"No two Acne stores are ever exactly the same," said Jonny Johansson, creative director. "We try to bring to each store a sense of creativity at work. We call the stores Acne Studios and that's how we want them to feel, like studios."
Tucked under the arcades of the Palais Royal, the Paris boutique joins the likes of Marc Jacobs, Pierre Hardy and Rick Owens, and Stella McCartney and Ralph Lauren are expected to move in before the end of the year.
Despite the picturesque surroundings, the 650-square-foot, company-owned shop takes inspiration from a city square in Stockholm.
"It was important to add a bit of our heritage," Johansson said.
The store houses Acne's collections for men and women, including accessories and jeans. Rounding out the merchandise is Acne's children's collection and its Consider Classics line, consisting of basic denim, chinos and T-shirts for men and women.
"We hope to have special merchandise for each store," said Johansson, disclosing plans for a limited edition range of high-end pieces exclusively for Acne stores.
Market sources estimated the Paris boutique would generate about 700,000 euros, or $1.1 million, annually. Including the Paris and New York flagships, Acne has 15 freestanding stores worldwide, which the brand aims to increase to 18 before the end of the year.Western Europe remains the key market for Acne, which last year had sales growth of 42.2 percent, said Schiller, who added that the firm was looking into stores in London, Los Angeles and Amsterdam.
The New York store, a 1,000-square-foot space, will also carry the full range of Acne product in women's and men's. The store will be a collaboration with Opening Ceremony owners Carol Lim and Humberto Leon, who will run the location.
"Even though Europe is still considered our main market, the U.S. is growing into a very important market for us," Schiller said. "Having a location in New York gives us a great opportunity to show the whole world what Acne is about."
“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
Azzedine Alaïa's “I-did-it-my-way” ethos stood out starkly at a time when brands are experimenting with consumer-facing fashion shows, coed formats and trans-seasonal collections – anything to perk up lackluster sales of ready-to-wear in an age of Insta-everything. “It’s not creation anymore. This becomes a purely industrial approach,” the late designer told WWD in an interview last year. “But anyway, the rhythm of collections is so stupid. It’s unsustainable. There are too many collections.” Read more about the iconic designer’s life and work on wwd.com, link in bio. #wwdfashion #azzedinealaia (📷: @WWD Archive, 1986) #alaia
Sneaker reselling app @goat’s latest exhibit, "The Greatest: New York," tells the story of New York's sneaker culture. To celebrate the exhibit, an intimate crowd gathered on Thursday night at the pop-up gallery space, located at Platform in Culver City, to hear guest speaker and illustrator @esymai talk about her own rise in streetwear and women in the business. "For me I'm just someone who is creative. I like to create things," said Chang. #wwdfashion
Azzedine Alaïa, one of the most iconic couturiers of the modern era whose body-con designs defined Eighties fashion, has died in Paris. The diminutive Tunisian-born designer, known for his structured knitted dresses with fitted waists and impeccably cut, figure-hugging second skin silhouettes was deeply admired by his peers, and counted supermodel Naomi Campbell - his adoptive daughter - among his inner circle, one of a gang of glamazons including Farida Khelfa, Carla Bruni and Stephanie Seymour who became ambassadors of his style. (📷: Alexandre Guirkinger) #wwdblast