NERD-Y PLUMES: Now that Moncler’s creative ties with major designers are going strong, word has it the outerwear specialist is exploring new ground. According to sources, Moncler has teamed up with Pharrell Williams to work on a special project. A company spokesman declined to comment.
CALL HER: Betsey Johnson is eager to embrace the post-recession mood and design at lower price points — if only the masstige brands would ask her. “I would die for a collaboration with Target or H&M,” she said at Paper magazine’s 25th anniversary party. “They should call me.”
This story first appeared in the September 10, 2009 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
Johnson plans to spend Fashion’s Night Out tonight driving between her stores in a pink convertible brandishing large signs, though she worried that it might violate some regulation. “But I have a good relationship with the police,” she said. “I did some fund-raisers for them, and their girlfriends wear my clothes.”
SPORTY SNAPSHOTS: To celebrate the Oct. 1 launch of its AW77 hoodie (which is a “fully lined multipanel scuba hood…zips to your chin…3.5 extra inches of shield for your neck”), this evening Nike Sportswear will unveil a series of photographs of seven athletes shot by David Sims and styled by Karl Templer. The portraits are slated to make their debut at the company’s Mercer Street store in honor of Fashion’s Night Out, and their subjects include Maria Sharapova, Rafael Nadal, Kobe Bryant and LeBron James. Of his own sartorial choices, Nadal said: “Off the court, I see that being normal will help you be better on the court. I like more or less to feel comfortable with what I wear on and off the court. And I like to be well dressed.” The AW77 is named for the “athletics mecca,” according to the company, known as Athletics West that Geoff Hollister, Nike’s third employee, started in 1977 in an effort to create a rigorous training ground for track and field athletes in Oregon.
ISABELL’S WILL: Sotheby’s is gearing up to sell select pieces from the collection of event planner Robert Isabell, who died in July. Known for his imaginative style and high society party planning, Isabell created his own utopia in an expansive Greenwich Village apartment. His finds include items from Jean Prouvé, Harry Bertoia, Paul Evans and Charlotte Perriand. The auction house expects the 130-lot December sale to drum up more than $1.5 million in sales. An Evans’ sideboard from his Sculpted Front series is expected to fetch upward of $60,000. In accordance with Isabell’s will, proceeds will benefit the Gerald B. Lambert Memorial Foundation Inc., for the sole purpose of preserving the Oak Spring Garden Library and Greenhouses in Upperville, Va., which was established by Isabell’s friend, Rachel “Bunny” Mellon, in memory of her father.
TO MARKET: Dover Street Market, the eclectic multibrand designer emporium masterminded by Rei Kawakubo of Comme des Garçons, is branching out. Look out for a mini version, devoted to accessories only, to set up camp at the trendy Saint Martins Lane hotel come November and to stay through the holidays. Meanwhile, Dover Street continues to be an important launching pad for a range of European brands. Word has it late November will see the arrival of a large-scale shop for Celine, showcasing its new design direction under Phoebe Philo.
PARTING WAYS: After just more than a year as managing director of the Paris designer label Kris Van Assche, Perrine Houdoux-Stoclet has parted ways with the company, WWD has learned. A brand spokesman confirmed the executive, previously with Thierry Mugler, vacated her post on Sept. 1, but declined to comment on her motive. Her successor is to be named over the coming months, he added.
EAGLE MOBILE: American Eagle Outfitters is flying into mobile commerce, the company plans to reveal today. Any mobile device will automatically be able to access the American Eagle store, which also sells aerie and 77kids in addition to American Eagle. “We know that AE customers are using their mobile devices for just about everything, from communication to entertainment,” said Mike Dupuis, vice president of marketing, digital channels. “Mobile commerce is still in its early stages, but…it is important to AEO to be among the first to offer it to customers as another way to interact with our brands.” Polo Ralph Lauren, Sears, Victoria’s Secret, Amazon, Yoox and Urban Outfitters are among the retailers offering mobile commerce.
SWISS MISS: The Beltway crowd knows Isabel Toledo’s name since she suited up First Lady Michelle Obama for inauguration day. And this fall they will have the chance to get acquainted with her collection, when she stages a fashion show at the Swiss Embassy Nov. 4. The following day the designer will make an appearance at Nordstrom’s Tysons Corner store and have a public chat with The Washington Post’s Robin Givhan at the Textiles Museum.