The leather goods brand this week unveiled an in-store shop at Fred Segal Man in Santa Monica, Calif., the first step in a planned retail rollout in that part of the country. Additional shops will open at Mario’s in Seattle and Portland, Ore., in the spring.
On Dec. 10, Ghurka will open a 1,500-square-foot company-owned flagship at 245 Post Street in San Francisco. This store, which will be its largest to date, will join its two stores in New York City: 59th Street and Fifth Avenue in Midtown, and Prince and Lafayette Streets in SoHo.
“This is the beginning of our West Coast expansion,” said John Reuter, chief executive officer of Ghurka and Brightwork Brand Holdings Corp., the private equity firm that acquired the brand in September of 2011. “After New York, our two top e-commerce markets are San Francisco and Los Angeles, in that order,” Reuter said. “So we’re going where our customers are.”
Under its former owners, Ghurka had operated a San Francisco store, Reuter said, “so there’s a strong user base,” a fact that was key to the decision to open its third store there. “Post Street will be a full flagship,” he said, and will carry the company’s full product line.
The shop at Fred Segal features the brand’s daytime and travel leather goods, as well accessories such as wallets, pouches and dopp kits. Fixtures have been modeled after the new Ghurka store concept, which made its debut in the SoHo store that opened last fall. Included in the shop are a restored 1967 BMW R69S motorcycle and STIV S500 sidecar that are upholstered in Ghurka’s signature chestnut leather.
For holiday, Ghurka will add sporting and pet gift collections that will include items such as leashes and dog collars, as well as handmade footballs and baseballs with a vintage sensibility, covers for skeet-trap shotguns and photographic accessories.
Reuter said that since the brand was acquired, sales have been strong. “We’ll have three stores open, and our [wholesale] collection has grown from 18 doors when we acquired the brand to over 120 now. And sales have increased substantially. We’ll do well over $5 million this year, and we were doing less than $1 million when we bought it.”
He continued: “We’re pleased with the progress we’re making to bring back a great American luxury brand. We look at ourselves as stewards of this brand. It deserves its place in the market.”
Ghurka was founded in 1975 by Marley Hodgson, who had created Trafalgar, and the name derives from the handcrafted leather goods created for the Ghurka soldiers of Nepal, who are renowned for their bravery.
Ghurka will also open a shop at Garmany in Red Bank, N.J., in the spring.
@fearofgod and @maxfieldla have teamed up on a pop-up installation. The store, located in the gallery space across from Maxfield’s Melrose Ave location, is the site of the brand’s House of God pop-up in which Fear of God founder @jerrylorenzo has created a church-inspired installation. A dozen vintage church pews sit in front of an LED screen playing 90s gospel singers in an effort to re-create an environment akin to a Southern Baptist Church, Lorenzo explained. Read more about the pop-up on WWD.com #wwdfashion (📷: Jennifer Johnson)
Known for his sleek, sophisticated American glamour, Norman Norell is the subject of an upcoming exhibition at @fitnyc. “Norell: Dean of American Fashion,” which runs from February 9 through April 14, will feature approximately 100 ensembles and accessories. His best work is exemplified by the designer’s glittering “mermaid” gowns frosted with thousands of hand-sewn sequins – like the one pictured. (📷: William Helburn) #wwdfashion
For pre-fall 2018, @balmain didn’t let go of the glitz. A crystal embroidered baseball jacket priced at around $40,000 hangs in the “couture” section of the brand’s first men’s pre-collection. Sporting the words “Balmain Army” across the back, the item took around two months to make. “When it was completed, it was like Christmas, it was like, ‘It’s done, it’s exactly what I wanted,’” said Balmain’s creative director @olivier_rousteing during a tour of the collection in a Paris showroom on Monday. #wwdfashion
Eighty degree temperatures and outdoor installations at the annual Art Basel Miami Beach called for bright, elevated beachwear. See more street style pictures on WWD.com. #theyarewearing #ABMB (📷: @lifeinreverie)
Following September’s emotional tribute to her brother Gianni, Donatella Versace wanted to bring the spring show’s deep sense of intimacy to her @versace_official pre-fall collection. Donatella found inspiration in Versace Palazzo in Milan and from Gianni’s opulent apartment. Archival patterns and new motifs were splashed on silk shirtdresses and fitted jersey frocks. See the rest of the photos on WWD.com. #wwdfashion
Demna Gvasalia continues to shake up the Paris fashion calendar — and experiment with new runway timetables for his @vetements_official brand. WWD has learned that Vetements plans to stage its next coed show for the fall 2018 season on January 19 during Men’s Fashion Week in the French capital. Details about the timing and venue have not been confirmed — stay tuned on WWD.com to catch the latest. #wwdnews (📷: @giovanni_giannoni_photo)
@zacposen's go-to holiday gift? Cookies! "I'll usually bake cookies and send them as a gift," said the designer, who recently released his cookbook "Cooking With Zac: Recipes from Rustic to Refined." Get the recipe for his Brown Butter-Chocolate Chip Cookies via link in bio 🍪🍪🍪 #wwdeye #cookingwithzac
For @monsemaison’s pre-fall 2018 collection, Fernando Garcia and Laura Kim honed in on the brand’s many signatures — men’s wear, which was tweaked and feminized through deconstruction, proportion play and lots of bare shoulders. See the rest of the photos on WWD.com #wwdfashion (📷: George Chinese)
On Friday night, @yohjiyamamotoofficial received the Design for Asia Lifetime Achievement Award in Hong Kong. The 75-year-old designer has been celebrated for many years and is best known for his dark and avant-garde tailoring. “In my long career, in design, architecture, [I’ve been to] so many parties, this is the very first time that I have such a warm feeling, I really appreciate this,” Yamamoto said. #wwdfashion (📷: @dominiquemaitre)