Kate Spade Saturday could surpass the store count of its sister brand, Kate Spade New York, which boasts 80 units in the U.S. and 100 overseas.
This story first appeared in the July 22, 2013 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
“We have big plans for this brand,” said Kyle Andrew, senior vice president and brand director of Kate Spade Saturday. “This is a much more accessible line. That’s why we see so much potential. It can be in a lot more places than Kate Spade can be. [Kate Spade] has to stay at a certain level and maintain an image. We can go a lot broader.”
Kate Spade Saturday is priced about 50 percent below the original Kate Spade label. The multicategory brand offers a brightly colored collection of dresses, jackets, denim, T-shirts, sweaters and swimwear, as well as accessories such as handbags, jewelry, footwear and eyewear. There’s also beauty and home decor.
Kate Spade Saturday initially launched as an e-commerce pure play to reach its target customers — women ages 25 to 35 — where they live. “We wanted to send a signal that we were addressing the needs of our customer,” Andrew said, “young girls who spend their life on their phones.”
Kate Spade Saturday in the fall will open a 3,000-square-foot store at 152 Spring Street in New York’s SoHo neighborhood. The new unit is adjacent to the site of a former Kate Spade Saturday pop-up at number 154. The brand, which launched in March, is looking for more locations in Manhattan and on the West Coast, and plans to continue opening stores in Japan, where it now has six units.
The company on June 8 unveiled four pop-up shops with eBay touchscreens and payment processing by PayPal that closed on July 7. The Gansevoort Street location saw “a high level of engagement.” On Friday, it reopened with an apparel focus for four months. “We heard a lot from customers who wanted to try [products] on,” Andrew said.
The brand plans to open street locations and mall units. “We’re trying to continue to be innovative,” Andrew said. “We may do something with a kiosk idea in some places. We don’t want to be limited to traditional retail. We have a lot of ideas. We’re saying, ‘Where does she live, where is she hanging out? Let’s go there.’”
In Japan, Kate Spade Saturday will open its sixth store in the fall, and there are plans for more units next year. “The brand resonates very well with the Japanese customer,” Andrew said. “Kate Spade is loved and respected there. Asia is our focus because the brand is so strong there.” Andrew said the brand will also enter Europe.
The SoHo store will be bright and colorful, with lots of yellow, the brand’s key color. It will be easy to shop with a grab-and-go mentality and no hovering associates to help consumers put outfits together. “This girl doesn’t want help,” Andrew said.
Instead of traditional signage, prices and product information will be listed on iPads. There will be a customization option with choices of color palates, patterns and monograms. Cafés, like the popular eatery at the Tokyo flagship, may be in the offing.
“We want stores to be a place to hang out, especially on Saturday,” Andrew said. “We’ll have a food concept. The pop-up on Gansevoort Street has DJs and lemonade.”