New Orleans has music, food and football, and now Anthropologie is making a push for the retail-revival portion of the city’s comeback with a 9,000-square-foot store opening today. It’s the Philadelphia-based company’s 146th store, scouting for which began three years ago, according to Wendy B. McDevitt, Anthropologie’s co-president and chief operating officer.
“We have a customer there that’s dying to have us, but we wanted to make sure we had the right location,” she said. The store joins Ann Taylor, Banana Republic, Coach and Saks Fifth Avenue, among other restaurants, salons and stores at The Shops at Canal Place, a complex that borders the French Quarter.
Known for its site-specific designs, Anthropologie outfitted the new storefront with a raised porch and exaggerated shutters inspired by traditional New Orleans architecture. Inside, the floors are laid with reclaimed white oak, the 13 dressing rooms are framed with reclaimed barn wood and a wood-tread staircase suspended by steel cables connects the bi-level space designed by James Smith, Anthropologie’s head of store design. There’s also “a huge artistic dimension,” said McDevitt. “We were reinvigorated by the richness of the artistic community in New Orleans.” So Rebecca Rebouché was commissioned for the sprawling mural depicting local culture, and several local designers have been enlisted for exclusive merchandise, including jewelry by Nancy Rhett, one-of-a-kind T-shirts, necklaces and belts by Helene Florence and pillows by Jill Dupré.
McDevitt also noted “the timing of this store opening, while not purposeful, happens to fall on the anniversary of Katrina.” Thus, on Aug. 27 Anthropologie is hosting a benefit for For the Bayou, a fund-raising organization that supports communities effected by the BP oil spill, featuring a performance by the Thelonious Monk Ensemble, which will start a weekend of special events and activities to celebrate the store opening.
“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