NEW YORK — If Anne Klein’s up-to-date SoHo boutique was the seed representing the company’s new image, then the expanded licensing agreement with Japan’s Takihyo Company Ltd. is its first blossom.
Anne Klein’s parent, Kasper ASL, said Nagoya, Japan-based Takihyo will hold the license in that country for the next 10 years, furthering Anne Klein’s efforts to be recognized as a global fashion powerhouse. In the deal, Takihyo — Anne Klein’s former owner — will distribute women’s apparel, handbags, belts and small leather goods, gloves, scarves, sleepwear, footwear, socks, jewelry and hand towels under the Anne Klein New York and AK Anne Klein labels.
"Our new agreement is a significant component in our commitment to grow the Anne Klein brand globally," said John Idol, Kasper’s chairman and chief executive officer. "Japan is an important market for us and we intend to build the Anne Klein brands to be one of the most important designer labels throughout Japan. Takihyo has been a partner with us for 30 years and the renewal of our agreement reflects our mutual belief in each company’s ability to accomplish this new expansion."
While clothing sizes may differ for the Japanese, apparel designs will remain unchanged and will continue to come from the New York headquarters of Anne Klein. Additionally, all existing shop-in-shops — currently, there are more than 100 — in Japanese department stores such as Isetan, Hankyu and Mitsukoshi, will be renovated to match the image of the SoHo boutique.
As reported, the first Anne Klein New York flagship opened in February, after the company hired Charles Nolan last year as senior vice president of design to revamp the brand’s image. Besides the shop-in-shop renovations, freestanding stores are planned, with the first store expected to open in fall 2003. An Anne Klein spokeswoman said details are yet to be determined.
A more aggressive marketing and advertising program for Japan is also part of the agreement. The current U.S. and European campaigns with Bridget Hall will run in Japanese magazines in August, most notably a six-page gatefold in Vogue Japan.
Prior to Anne Klein’s acquisition by Kasper in 1999, Takihyo was the company’s owner since 1973. After Takihyo sold it to Kasper, it stayed on board as the company’s Japanese license. When it came time to renew its license this year, the companies expanded the current agreement. A spokeswoman for Anne Klein declined to give figures for the deal.Anne Klein has also signed long-term regional licensing deals in the past year with Sung Chang InterFashion in Korea and Piccadilly Center S.A. in Latin America.
“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