London — Kate Moss, fashion icon. Now Kate Moss, designer.
Topshop today will unveil a long-term agreement with the supermodel under which she will help create and design an exclusive collection for the British fast-fashion retailer. The collection, Kate Moss for Topshop, will debut at the company's 308 stores and on its Web site in spring 2007.
"We want to build this into a global brand," Sir Philip Green, owner of Topshop's parent, Arcadia Group plc, told WWD in an interview. "She is a fashion icon in terms of the U.K., probably the best-known model, and is what Topshop is all about in terms of fashion. Our customers identify with her."
Moss said in a statement, "I have always been a big fan of Topshop and regularly shop there. I love what they stand for and am very excited at the thought of working with them. It's going to be great fun."
Terms of the agreement were not disclosed. Green said only that it is a long-term deal, joking, "or at least until Sunday, anyway."
He declined to reveal any sales targets, but did not demur at suggestions that revenues eventually could be several hundred million dollars. That would place the Kate Moss for Topshop collection in the same league as other celebrity fashion lines such as Jennifer Lopez's Sweetface Fashion Co., which has sales of apparel, accessories and fragrances of about $200 million annually, and the new L.A.M.B. label by Gwen Stefani, which is aiming for sales of $90 million in its first year.
"If we do this right, then it should be a successful global brand," Green said. "We will put real energy behind it on both sides. In fact, Kate's first day in the office will be Thursday. She already joked about where her office will be."
The Topshop deal is yet another sign that the scandal last year over Moss' alleged use of cocaine has not damaged her status as a model or fashion trendsetter. After some brands dropped her from their campaigns last year because of the furor, Moss has returned stronger than ever this fall. She is featured in at least 14 fashion ad campaigns, including those of Agent Provocateur lingerie, Louis Vuitton, Bulgari, David Yurman, Calvin Klein jeans, Christian Dior accessories, Burberry, Versace and Longchamp.Green acknowledged the potential dangers of signing a celebrity like Moss, but added, "From my point of view, people make mistakes and they shouldn't be penalized for that for the rest of their lives. She is sufficiently talented and commercially sensible to make this work. She recognizes this is high profile for both of us."
Green personally negotiated the deal after he said he met Moss and she told him, "I think we should do something together."
As the discussions continued, Green said neither he nor Moss wanted for her simply to be the face of Topshop.
"She told me what she likes about Topshop, and that she's always shopped there," he explained. "It's her market, appeals to her, and what she wears and represents in terms of fashion is what we're trying to do with the brand to position it in a slightly different place. She knows fashion, and said what she wanted to do was to put more of her ideas into the business because she knows what people like to wear. She believes she can bring value to Topshop if she works with our designers to create a collection."
Moss will appear in only the occasional ad for the brand, stressed Green, adding that most campaigns will feature other models. Her main role will be to give advice on what the collection should look like and what trends should be included.
"She will come in for a few hours every other day or so, set the inspiration for the line, and then our designers will interpret that," Green said. "She knows what the trends are, she likes shopping and she will provide the ethos as to where we should position the line. She will be in the engine room helping to steer the collection."
Kate Moss for Topshop will cover a variety of categories, including ready-to-wear, accessories and footwear, Green said.
"Logic dictates the Kate Moss bag, the Kate Moss jean, the Kate Moss boot,'' he said. "There will be specialized things on the one hand and then perhaps more basic things on the other."
Prices have not been decided, nor has where the collection will fit price-wise with other Topshop lines."She is a very casual girl," Green said. "Kate could do a great T-shirt at 10 quid [$19] and a fabulous jean at 60 pounds [$114]. It's the new world we are in — the top end on the one hand and our end on the other. This is the right time to do something like this."
That's particularly true for Topshop, one of the U.K.'s most successful retailers. The company has become extremely active in fostering new collections and fashion initiatives in the U.K., including sponsoring the New Generation group of designers showing at London Fashion Week for the last 10 seasons. Many of those collections are carried at Topshop under the Unique label. Green is funding a fashion academy here to train retail and fashion executives. It will be formally opened this fall.
Topshop is eager to expand internationally, including in the U.S. Green initially wanted to have a flagship in New York by spring 2007, but a lawsuit over rights to the Topshop brand in America delayed that plan. After settling the suit last month, the billionaire retail mogul has renewed his search for a flagship site in the U.S.
His goal is to have a store open by fall 2007. The unit will aim to replicate Topshop's flagship on Oxford Street here, and will be 60,000 to 90,000 square feet.
Green said he may consider opening corners in department stores in the U.S., particularly with the Kate Moss for Topshop collection. Meanwhile, Topshop is working on a new Web site that will enable global e-commerce. The revamped site should be completed in time for the launch of the Kate Moss line.
"At the end of the day, the product has to do the talking," Green said of the collaboration with Moss. "I saw Bono in the airport the other day and he said, 'Philip, I should have listened to you. Selling clothes is a nightmare.' I said, 'I don't try to play the drums or sing because I know they aren't easy. Same with selling clothes.' At the end of the day, the customer has to love the product. That's the only way it will work."
There'll be no rest for those headed to Europe for men's, as Paris just closed the gap with Milan. According to a provisional calendar released by the Chambre Syndicale, Paris Men's Week will now open a day earlier on January 16. See new highlights on the official lineup on WWD.com. #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: @kukukuba)
BREAKING: Jonathan Saunders is leaving @DVF. The designer has resigned from his position as chief creative officer of Diane von Furstenberg, the company said in a statement on Friday. At the time of his hire, von Furstenberg said Saunders’ arrival symbolized and facilitated her stepping back from the day-to-day duties that occupy the work of a full-time creative director. The British designer joined DVF in May 2016 and was in charge of all product categories. #wwdnews
For @versace_official’s spring ad campaign, the brand emphasized the archival prints from the spring tribute collection dedicated to the late Gianni Versace. Closing out the show were five of Gianni’s favorite models: Cindy, Naomi, Carla, Helena, and Claudia. Bowing on December 18, the new campaign is yet another tribute to supermodel-dom as the images by Steven Meisel are fronted by @iamnaomicampbell, @cturlington, @gisele and more. #wwdfashion
Four-time Oscar-nominated actress Annette Bening has been waiting 20 years to play Gloria Graham in "Film Stars Don't Die in Liverpool," which will be released on December 29. The movie about Graham – a Hollywood star known for her controversial relationship with a younger Englishman named Peter Turner – is based off a memoir Turned wrote. "She felt vulnerable to him, because she loved him, she really did love him. And anyone that we really truly are in love with, we re vulnerable to in a very deep way," said Bening. Read our full interview with the modern icon of an actress on WWD.com. #wwdeye (📷: @ninebagatelles; Styled by @cristinaehrlich)
The crisp white button down: a staple that can be dressed up or down and accessorized throughout the decades. Here, on a Art Basel-goer in 2017 on the left and on the iconic Audrey Hepburn in “Roman Holiday” in 1953 on the right. #tbt #wwdfashion (📷: Andrew Morales)
Known for her work with @victoriassecret, 25-year-old model @georgiafowler is raising her profile in Hollywood. Fowler stars in @vincecamuto’s holiday campaign, which launched in partnership with “Pitch Perfect 3.” “Almost every shoot with Vince Camuto, I’ve had to face a fear…It was definitely a challenge. I’m so grateful for it, though. I’ve always wanted to be a pop star, so that was the perfect chance,” Fowler said. Head to WWD.com to read about Fowler’s experience modeling, including at the #VSFashionShow, and her relationship with Nick Jonas. #wwdeye (📷: @jilliansollazzo)
EXCLUSIVE: Huda Kattan just became the first beauty influencer to land a major beauty deal. Kattan's business, @hudabeauty, has received a minority investment from private equity firm TSG Consumer Partners. The brand, which industry sources say is on track to do $200 million in retail sales for 2017, will receive support on product, retail and geographic expansion through the deal. Get all the details on the deal and read @_a_collins' interview with Kattan on WWD.com. Link in bio. (📷: @jgreenery) #wwdbeauty #wwdnews
Peruvian model @juanaburga_official – who is known for walking the runways of @rodarte, @viviennewestwood and @torybuch – is making the move to the big screen with drama “Los Últimos.” The film premiered in Argentina in November and arrives in the U.S. and Europe in 2018. On making the switch from modeling to acting, Burga told WWD: “It’s a completely different thing – a lot of people think it’s similar or try to connect things, especially like getting used to the camera or being looked at all the time or playing these different characrers, but film is a completely different story.” #wwdeye (📷: @jgreenery)
London’s newly opened @designmuseum will look back on the life and work of Azzedine Alaïa in a show that the designer helped to curate before he died of heart failure last month. The retrospective, which Alaïa had worked on with Mark Wilson, chief curator of the @groningermuseum, will look at the impact of his work worldwide. The show, “Azzedine Alaïa: The Couturier,” will run from May 10 to October 7. Read more about the exhibit on WWD.com #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: @zefashioninsider)