Denim, T-shirt lines and a distinct Los Angeles aesthetic dominated Project New York. As at other trade shows, buyers were optimistic for a retail rebound this year.
“Consumers are feeling more secure, and I think most people know where they stand with their jobs now. That sense of insecurity is lifting a bit,” said Leslie Letellier, men’s buyer at Theodore, which operates nine stores in Los Angeles and Palm Desert, Calif. “Things have definitely started to pick up in our stores. People haven’t shopped for a year, and they are bored with their closets. They need a fix.”
Letellier said she was buying more aggressively in styles she was confident in, but was still buying most categories conservatively. “You can always chase product later,” she rationalized.
One of Letellier’s favorite brands at Project was Arnold Zimberg, a purveyor of brightly colored shirts in special fabrics like gauze laced with Lurex, melding contemporary flair with luxury appeal. While vendors generally were emphasizing lower prices this season, Zimberg was unapologetic about the $150 to $240 retail price tags for his shirts.
“To just chase price is stupid. There are certain stores that will say things like: ‘Don’t show me anything over $185.’ I think those are the ones that will go out of business,” he contended, noting the brand’s best-selling shirt last season was $200. “It’s all about the product.”
At denim maker Rivet De Cru, the sweet spot was $115 to $145 for jeans. “The market is going cleaner,” said Ruben Campos, founder of the brand, which operates under Los Angeles-based manufacturer Denim Artisans. “Sales have been phenomenal so far. Retailers are actually buying for September, and not just immediates, which has been the norm during this recession.”
One of the more eye-catching booths belonged to a new Seoul, South Korea-based brand called Tee Library, which featured book-inspired graphics on T-shirts, which are packaged inside fake tomes. Fans of “Animal Farm,” “Alice in Wonderland” or “Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde” can sport their literary tastes on their chests, while retailers can acquire a unique merchandising display scheme.
Plaid shirts remain the trend that just won’t die and they were on prominent display at Original Penguin. The Perry Ellis International-owned brand also featured tops with vintage graphics from the brand’s 55-year history, alongside skinny suits and polos fashioned from fine-gauge sweater material. For bargain hunters, the label offered a lower-priced line of basics, including simple polos and wovens which retail from $49 to $79.
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)