Now is the time for retailers to go the distance for their customers, and Bergdorf Goodman and Lanvin certainly went the extra mile Thursday night, turning what was essentially a trunk show into a grand Muhammad-and-the-mountain moment. As with any designer PA, the idea was to give clients a personal shopping experience. But rather than the usual in-store affair, Bergdorf brought in Lanvin’s Alber Elbaz to host a cocktail party and runway show at a private club housed in a stately white marble building on the northeast corner of 60th Street and Fifth Avenue, which, in a slightly Kubrickian twist, insisted up front that reporters not mention its name. An odd but not entirely inappropriate request; Lanvin is something of a fetish for the fashionable, after all.
This was a most proper occasion — jacket and tie required — held in a majestic room with soaring frescoed ceilings and ballroom chairs. “It feels very Parisian, doesn’t it?” said Elbaz, who was in town specifically for this event, his first of the sort with Bergdorf. “The idea was to have all of you in this beautiful room that is a little bit of Paris. But you open the window and the door and it’s New York. And it’s the best location because Bergdorf Goodman is just behind us.” With the intention of re-creating “the magic of a fashion show but in a more intimate way,” Elbaz plucked 38 runway looks, some styled with commercial pieces, as well as the rose-covered door frame from his Paris show.
If the familiar sight was redundant for the editors in attendance who saw the show in March, Elbaz didn’t mind. “It’s not for the journalists,” he said. “It’s for the clients.” The room was full of them — 100 clients and their guests — some of whom had traveled quite a way for the event. “Ruth, the personal shopper at Bergdorf, called to tell me about this,” said Nancy Gonzalez, who was in from Colombia to do double duty on Friday, when she hosted her own trunk show at Bergdorf and shopped Lanvin’s. And Elbaz did his best to make it worth Bergdorf’s best shoppers’ while, engaging them from the top of the runway with witty banter.
“We planned this event a year ago when the economy was booming. Remember that?” he queried before talking his audience through the clothes in an informative but humorous way. “All of this collection was cut on the bias,” Elbaz explained. “I ask my staff, ‘How does it feel when you wear it?’ and they say, ‘I feel that the coat is hugging me.’ I think that’s what we need in fashion.” It had the intimate ring of the presentations Elbaz holds for press and buyers during pre-collections. “It starts with fantastic, fabulous design,” said Bergdorf’s Linda Fargo. “But when you couple back with a designer who is able to connect with clients and sellers, it translates into a more dynamic and personal business. Alber brings the humanity to the business.”
While Bergdorf declined to disclose sales goals or results from the actual shopping event held in-store on Friday, it was obviously banking on Elbaz’s charming delivery. Among the best sellers were a black, stretch wool sheath with a shoulder puff, and a sleeveless stretch wool dress with a hip tuck, in beige and navy, both for $2,835. “It’s everything,” said Bergdorf president and chief executive officer Jim Gold when asked how such face time pays off. “It’s so important that people understand why these clothes are what they are, why they’re priced the way they are.” In other words, Lanvin’s not cheap, and now more than ever women need incentive to spend, a notion Elbaz acknowledged during his presentation. “Everyone is asking, ‘Do women need a 3,000 euro dress? Is it politically correct?’ ” Maybe not. But as Elbaz said, “The idea here is to bring back the pleasure of shopping.”
“What he has done at Vuitton is really exceptional,” said @gameofthrones’ actress Gwendoline Christie on @mrkimjones’ final show for @louisvuitton. “He has rebooted luxury in terms of making it commercial, viable and contemporary. And most importantly artistic. He has never compromised his artistic vision for the sake of commodity.” (📷: @zefashioninsider)
After seeing a demand for men’s wear from its customers, British contemporary women’s wear label @ariesarise has added a men’s wear component and will launch a unisex collection with @mrporterlive. The 20-piece collection includes jackets, denim, logo T-shirts and more with deconstructed ‘90s vibes. Set to launch on January 18, you can shop the pieces on Aries’ website and on mrporter.com. #wwdfashion
“And so spending so much time with a character who thinks like that, inevitability you try and analyze yourself and go back and think about your own demons and dark chapters that you had in your life,” says @thedanielbruhl of his role in TNT’s “The Alienist.” The show, set in the Gilded Age of New York, also stars Dakota Fanning and Luke Evans. Head to WWD.com to read about how 39-year-old Brühl prepared for the role and why he thinks the show is so relevant to today #wwdeye ( 📷: @Eriktanner)
Now that Celine Dion’s collection has topped $10 million in sales, the pop superstar, fashion icon and newly-minted industry player is eyeing growth in Asia. Read the full report by @tiffanyap, link in bio. #wwdnews #celinedion
“My personal philosophy to beauty is paying attention to oneself. I love to be outdoors, lots of fresh air, trying to take care of yourself as best you can. I always notice that comes through,” says Felicity Jones, the global face of @shiseido-owned @cledepeaubeauteus, which launches today. Head to WWD.com to read more about the actress’ love for beauty and how she prepared for her new role in “The Basis of Sex,” playing the young Ruth Bader Ginsburg. #wwdbeauty (📷: @dandoperalski)
Among the familiar faces at @off____white’s show was a surprise figure: Japanese artist @takashipom, pictured here on Wednesday morning. Other show-goers included @jerrylorenzo, who spoke about his upcoming project: a @nike collaboration for back to school, with designs inspired by his childhood on the West Coast. Sitting in the front row were Future, Don Crawley, @miguel and more. See the rest of the photos on WWD.com #wwdeye (📷: Stephane Feugere)
According to @laurentsai, former “Terrace House: Aloha State” cast member, she didn’t know she was auditioning for the Japanese version of “Real World.” “I was telling a couple of my friends and someone’s like, ‘That sounds a lot like Terrace House.’ I was like, ’No it can’t be.’” Turns out, it was. But Tsai isn’t just a reality star — she’s an illustrator who has worked with Starbucks Japan and most recently, she’s dipping her toes into the fashion world. Head to WWD.com to read about her time on the show, modeling and her art. #wwdeye (📷: @danieldorsa)
More changes are coming to New York Fashion Week: Beginning with the spring 2019 collection, @alexanderwangny will move his New York show to June from September, adopting a biannual schedule with collections shown in June and December. Additionally, the @cfda is planning for an official summer/winter fashion season taking place as soon as June and December 2018. Read more about the upcoming changes on WWD.com. #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: @slovekinpics)