Dylan Lauren hopes to hit a retail sweet spot with her newest collaboration: flip-flops with Brazilian sandal brand Havaianas.
This story first appeared in the April 1, 2015 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
The limited-edition footwear collection hits Dylan’s Candy Bar, Bloomingdale’s, Lester’s, Havaianas and dylanscandybar.com on Friday.
“I always knew I wanted to create a lifestyle brand — and watching my dad go from having a tie company to a full lifestyle collection was certainly very inspiring,” said Lauren, founder and chief executive officer of the candy store that bears her name. In addition to her newest partnership, Lauren in the past has partnered with Maclaren for strollers, with LeSportsac for bags and with Claire’s on jewelry, tech accessories, nail polish and lip products.
As for the flip-flops, she said, “I seriously could design 1,000 candy patterns if Havaianas wanted to make them all.” At launch, two styles of sandals adorned with Dylan’s Candy Bar’s most well-known signature candies — swirled lollipops and round lollipops — will be on offer. The flip-flops will retail for $30 and are available in tween to adult sizes, from 3/4 to 11/12.
Lauren — who noted she looks at candy as an art form that connects the worlds of art, fashion and pop culture — has many seasonal collections. “But unlike fashion, where there are two seasons, with candy there are endless seasons,” she said. “We can do red, white and blue for the Fourth of July, orange and black for Halloween, red and pink for Valentine’s Day, etc. It’s constantly being switched up.”
There are nine Dylan’s Candy Bar stores, soon to be 10. Three are in New York — her Upper East Side flagship, a seasonal shop in East Hampton and an outpost at JFK International Airport — and a fourth, in Union Square, is nearly ready to open. Chicago, Los Angeles and Miami have stores, and Lauren also has stores at the Grand Traverse Resort and Spa in Williamsburg, Mich., Mohegan Sun in Uncasville, Conn., and the Detroit Metro Airport.
She isn’t even close to being finished with collaborations. In fact, she has a long wish list that includes floating water toys such as rafts, sneakers and candy-making machines that allow consumers to recreate the Dylan’s experience at home.
Home furnishings are another category being considered. “Our conference-room table is a giant glass table filled with gumballs, and people have asked if they can buy anything similar,” she said. “I think there’s an opportunity to do home furnishings that could be taken to an adult level, but still celebrate the kid in all of us.”
As for Lauren’s own favorite sweets? “I love the swirly pops on the flip-flops, but to eat? Right now, I’m really into red Swedish fish, licorice and everything marshmallowy.”