PARIS — How’s this for conceptual: Despite a grim economic climate, Martin Margiela’s freestanding stores and corners in Paris logged a 21 percent sales increase in January versus a year ago.
On average, sales in Margiela’s 35 shops and corners around the world posted a January bump north of 10 percent.
It’s a sign of continued, albeit tempered, momentum for the iconoclastic men’s and women’s wear designer, who celebrated 20 years in fashion last fall amid wide speculation he was walking off into the sunset.
“He’s still in his position,” assured Margiela chief executive Giovanni Pungetti, while disclosing the Belgian designer has recently reduced his day-to-day involvement and is now rarely spotted in the company’s rickety, all-white hallways. “He’s not here eight hours a day.”
Asked if Margiela would be backstage at his women’s fall fashion show on Friday, the ceo shrugged, “I don’t know. Sometimes he is, sometimes not.”
In an interview in his office at Margiela’s quirky headquarters, his desk a thick pane of glass laid over two sawhorses, Pungetti said the company would continue to expand its product universe and exhibit at Milan’s furniture fair Salone del Mobile next month.
“The idea is to go to Milan to show our philosophy in interiors that can be interpreted in the future. We feel our brand is a universe that can be enlarged to other territories,” he said.
Pungetti was cryptic so as not to spoil the “surprise” of its presentation. He characterized the Salone presence as more of a teaser for a launch in 2010 rather than an introduction of home objects or furniture.
The furniture collection is another example of the expansion of the brand since it was acquired by Renzo Rosso’s Only the Brave Srl in 2002. The house’s first fragrance, under license with beauty giant L’Oréal, will be unveiled to the trade in November, with distribution to follow in 2010, Pungetti confirmed.
What’s more, a second collection of fine jewelry, in partnership with Italy’s Damiani, will be unveiled later this year. Pungetti cited promising sell-through above 40 percent in the company’s London and Paris stores for the first collection, which arrived last November. Retail prices range from 1,000 to 5,000 euros, or $1,250 to $7,250.
Breaking News: @louisvuitton's men's artistic director @mrkimjones is leaving the French fashion house after nearly 7 years. Jones joined Louis Vuitton in 2011, following a three year tenure as creative director of British luxury goods brand Alfred Dunhill. Jones is to exit Louis Vuitton after showing his fall 2018 collection for the brand in Paris on Thursday. Read the full exclusive story on WWD.com. Link in bio. #wwdnews #wwdfashion
For men’s fall 2018, @giuseppezanotti drew on elements from streetwear, sport, biker, combat and rock ‘n’ roll. Pictured here are a pair of shoes from the collection, featuring zippers, rhinestones, and silver hardware. Head to WWD.com to see a roundup of the accessories from Milan’s men’s fall 2018 shows. #wwdfashion (📷: Andrea Delb)
To celebrate the 25th anniversary of @ralphlauren’s snowboarding collection, the brand is mining its archives. The iconic brand is reintroducing vintage styles and dropping new designs for a color capsule that will be available in Ralph Lauren stores and @openingceremony on January 25. The capsule will consist of 10 pieces, including the Snow Beach Pullover, pictured here, which is a collector’s item that rapper Raekwon wore in Wu-Tang Clan’s “Can It Be All So Simple” video. #wwdfashion (📷: Tom Gould)
For @rochasofficial’s pre-fall 2018 collection, creative director Alessandro Dell’Acqua channeled the sophisticated and intriguing Catherine Denevue in the film “Belle de Jour.” Polished collarless coats, midi skirts, suits and ’60s graphic motifs were all featured in the collection, adding a sense of discreet luxury. See the rest of the photos on WWD.com #wwdfashion
“We tried to produce clothing of that couture quality, but the most daunting part was that we only had a matter of days [to do it],” said costume designer Lou Eyrich, who recreated Gianni Versace’s iconic looks for @americancrimestoryfx. Eyrich searched online retailers and vintage shops for original pieces from the design house and for @penelopecruzoficial, who plays Donatella Versace. Head to WWD.com to read how she created the Versace world. #wwdfashion
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Harrods plans to remove the famous statue of Princess Diana and Dodi Al Fayed from the bottom of the Egyptian escalators and hand it back to Mohamed Al-Fayed. “We are very proud to have played our role in celebrating the lives of Diana, Princess of Wales and Dodi Al Fayed at Harrods and to have welcomed people from around the world to visit the memorial for the past 20 years,” said Michael Ward, Harrods managing director. “With the announcement of the new official memorial statue to Diana, Princess of Wales at Kensington Palace, we feel that the time is right to return this memorial to Mr. Al Fayed and for the public to be invited to pay their respects at the palace.” More on the news, with reporting by @loreleimarfil, at WWD.com. #wwdnews