NEW YORK — The lightness of Derek Lam’s new store is immediately evident.
Curved walls made from clear acrylic — the same kind used to build gigantic aquariums — delineate space for each of Lam’s collections at the 2,800-square-foot store, which is at 10-12 Crosby Street in SoHo here.
Kazuyo Sejima and Ryue Nishizawa of Tokyo-based SANAA designed the store, Lam’s first. It is estimated to do $2.4 million in the first year, according to industry sources.
SANAA’s work for the New Museum has been critically acclaimed and the duo is working on an extension to the Musée du Louvre in Lens, France. “I scribbled what I wanted on a napkin during a flight to Tokyo to meet with them,” Lam said. “I wrote the words ‘mystery, lightness and sensuality.’”
The acrylic rooms look like glass bubbles, buoyant and delicate, and house Lam’s resort and spring pre-collections, knitwear and eveningwear, and shoes and handbags. A small leather goods collection, which was designed for the store, will be expanded for fall.
“The store gives us the opportunity to explore different categories, such as beach, jewelry and even a scent,” Lam said. “We’ll do more eveningwear. We’re going to do custom-made clothing. It’s all in the works. There are endless possibilities.”
Lam chose the location, on the eastern edge of SoHo, because it’s a bit out of the way. “I’m going to be in the company of Ted Muehling, antiques specialist De Vera, custom furniture store BDDW and Jil Sander,” he said. “Across the street there will be an outdoor garden for the Mondrian Hotel. I really wanted to respect the neighborhood. I don’t want to turn it into another Bleecker Street.”
The architects had some constraints, such as incorporating the existing columns into the design of the space, which was formerly a factory and later an actors’ studio. Decoration is kept to a minimum with a concrete floor and the original brick walls painted white. Chairs from a range of periods from Lam’s own collection punctuate the acrylic rooms. The only color comes from the clothes and the theatrical gold and silver woven drapes that move on runners and give privacy to the dressing rooms.
A VIP area with its own fitting room has a separate entrance from the street. At a party to welcome the new store on Wednesday night, Lam proved the VIP area won’t go to waste when Rihanna arrived. “She picked my favorite look from spring!” enthused Lam as the songstress braved a barrage of photographers. “I’m going to try to show her around, but she’s so surrounded by fans.”
The two made their way back towards the dressing rooms, where she admired the store’s futuristic design. “I want this to be my house,” said Rihanna who was sporting new blond hair streaks.
While the store is new, the sales associates are seasoned. Lam hired “a great team from Linda Dresner,” the iconic Park Avenue luxury retailer that closed in November. “They have books and bring clients with them. It’s about going to customers.”
The designer plans to move his office and studio from the Starrett-Lehigh Building to Crosby Street as soon as the space is finished. “I like the European model of a store and the designer’s atelier,” Lam said. “It’s like a [real] fashion house.”
@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
Spotted last night at the @erdem x @hm launch event: Kate Bosworth, Rashida Jones, Kirsten Dunst and Selma Blair. The party, which took place in LA, also marked the opening of their pop-up shop. “I was interested in creating a collection that wasn’t in any way disposable. It was about pieces you’d create and keep forever, things that have a permanence to it,” designer Erdem Moralioglu said. #wwdeye (📷: Katie Jones)
Renee Zellweger in yellow in 2001 and again in 2017. Chosen as one of the 12 @pantone Leading Spring Colors (and dubbed “Meadowlark”), it only makes sense that the bright hue stands the test of time and is making a resurgence this season, seen already on stars like @blakelively and @gigihadid. (📷: Donato Sardello & @rexfeatures) #wwdfashion #tbt
Dior’s 70th anniversary celebration continues with a new exhibition at the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto. “Christian Dior,” which is scheduled to run through March 18, takes a look at the founders tenure from 1947 to 1057 and feature 40 designs. Pictured here is an evening gown from the Ailée, fall 1948-49 haute couture collection. #wwdfashion (📷: Brian Boyle)
As one of the most recognizable models in the world, Christy Turlington Burns has an insider’s view of the fashion industry and the allegations of sexual harassment swirling around it. “I can say that harassment and mistreatment have always been widely known and tolerated in the industry. The industry is surrounded by predators who thrive on the constant rejection and loneliness so many of us have experiences at some point in our careers,” Turlington told WWD, along with her suggestions for how the modeling world should protect younger women and men. Read more on WWD.com. Link in bio. (📷: Tony Palmieri) #wwdnews
@asics America has tapped a new brand ambassador: famed DJ/record producer @steveaoki. This initiative is intended to set the tone for the new brand identity and philosophy and will include partnerships with influencers and in-store and off-line activations that will continue into next year. This is Asics’ most significant marketing effort in two decades, and is expected to attract younger consumers to the brand. #wwdfashion
24-year-old Jean Prounis is redefining the rules of jewelry. Formerly a studio assistant to Jemima Kirke and a design apprentice at Ghuran, she focuses on handcrafted subtleties and ancient goldsmithing techniques. “There was a really sterile feel in the environment and I wanted to have jewelry with character that shapes how you wear it everyday,” Prounis said. Each piece is hand made in New York, either by Prounis or three other jewelers in the district. #wwdfashion
“These collections continue to build on that vision, empowering differently abled adults to express themselves through fashion,” said @tommyhilfiger of his line of adaptive apparel, which launches today. The line consists of 37 men’s and 34 women’s styles based upon the pieces from the spring Tommy Hilfiger sportswear collection. #wwdnews