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The new Rachel Rachel Roy collection will ship to Macy’s, where it will be sold exclusively, in about three weeks — and Roy is already planning her own retail venture.
This story first appeared in the July 23, 2009 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
The designer, who sold a 50 percent stake of her business to Jones Apparel Group last year, will open a pop-up shop in Manhattan’s SoHo section at 111 Spring Street on Sept. 10. The unveiling of the shop is timed with the start of New York Fashion Week and the Fashion’s Night Out shopping event that evening. The 1,800-square-foot space will house the entire collection of Rachel Rachel Roy merchandise ranging from contemporary sportswear and dresses to footwear, jewelry and handbags. The store, which will only remain open for about 10 days — or until all merchandise is sold out — is a preview of what’s to come from the designer, who plans to open pop-up shops in others cities following New York.
Roy said the store will provide a snapshot into her point of view and will convey the full message of what the Rachel Rachel Roy brand is about.
“Having your own store is the only medium through which you get to tell your story to the customer in its complete essence,” Roy said. “I absolutely hope to have my own store one day, and to me, launching the Rachel Rachel Roy pop-up store is the most appropriate first step in that path.”
Roy said she plans to be in the store regularly to work with customers.
“What’s special about the pop-up store is that, due to the short-lived nature, I am able to fully devote myself and interact with my customers on a daily basis,” she said. “I grew up working in retail, so it’s rewarding for me to now have my own space, personally fit the customers and be able to hear their feedback directly.”
Stacy Lastrina, Jones Apparel Group’s executive vice president of marketing, said they plan to open with a bang. The store, which will be decked out in art by famed New York graffiti artist George “SEN One” Morillo, will have SEN One creating custom pieces for customers to purchase. Opening night will be hosted by musical artist Estelle. In addition, a graffiti-printed ice cream truck will be parked outside the store, giving out free ice cream to passersby. A percentage of proceeds (which is still being worked out) from sales at the store will benefit New Yorkers for Children.
“Our ultimate goal here is to bring a working lab to engage the downtown consumer,” Lastrina said. “Customers will get the total experience for what the brand is all about.”
The Rachel Rachel Roy apparel collection, which retails for between $59 and $299, includes an array of sportswear options such as stonewashed denim skirts; fake leather jackets and fake fur vests; long, chunky cardigans; Modal jersey dresses, jumpsuits and tops; crystal-embellished cotton jersey T-shirts; brushstroke-printed jackets and coats, and bright pink leopard-printed skinny jeans. In addition to apparel, there is a large selection of accessories, including footwear, handbags and jewelry, all retailing for less than $250.