LONDON — Juicy Couture is looking at Regent Street in a new light — a pink one — as it opens the bronze doors of its new unit near Oxford Circus.
This story first appeared in the July 27, 2012 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
Earlier this week, the brand opened a new London unit with a shop fit that’s all about gloriously clashing cultures coming together in a Grade II listed, or historically significant, building.
The walls are decorated with made-in-California palm tree moldings, floors are covered in black-and-white Italian marble arranged like a checkerboard, while the Twenties storefront, with its delicate bronze details, is British.
At night, the transparent glass pavement tiles outside the store light up, bathing the facade in the brand’s signature hot pink.
“It feels like a little jewel box,” said LeAnn Nealz, the brand’s president and chief creative officer, of the 2,375-square-foot store located at 198 Regent Street. “It’s an intimate store, and we wanted the feel to be a bit more residential than in the past.”
The shop fit and store design, Nealz added, are meant to play up the different merchandise categories, with the fashion collection, accessories, fragrances and jewelry on the ground floor; tracksuits and children’s wear on the lower ground level, and Bird by Juicy Couture on the mezzanine.
“We wanted this to feel like the world of Juicy Couture, and to highlight the brand’s different stories and collections,” she said. In homage to its host country, the brand has come up with London-themed charms, totes and T-shirts that scream “Choose Juicy” in hot pink.
The shop windows pay tribute to the 2012 Olympics, which kick off tonight. Nealz and her team have stacked them with mannequins made to look like synchronized swimmers decked in white floral bathing caps, Union Jack bikini bottoms and “Choose Juicy” gold foil T-shirts.
Inside the store, Art Deco-inspired shiny glass cases showcase the jewelry, while a bespoke crystal chandelier —surrounded by original molding — lights up the ground floor. In the back of the store, there’s an original, wrought-iron elevator surrounded by a gently curving marble staircase.
Downstairs, a rainbow of velour tracksuits has been stacked on shelves surrounding the staircase. The lower ground floor also showcases the intimates, children’s and technical accessories collections, while the dressing rooms are decorated with striped or floral print wallpapers inspired by Nealz’s personal collection of vintage fabrics. Bird by Juicy Couture — a darker, more sophisticated collection of mainly knits and tailored clothing — sits on the tiny mezzanine, overlooking the ground floor.
Many of the elements from the London store will be woven into Juicy’s “re-Coutured” retail units in the U.S.
“There’s not going to be a lot of mass construction involved in the re-Coutured stores, but there will be a lighter color palette on the walls, and the stores will be remerchandised to show that we’re about more than a tracksuit,” said Nealz.
To mark the London opening earlier this week, the brand sent 20 pink Vespas down Regent Street — with male models wearing Juicy T-shirts. They parked in front of the store to greet Tali Lennox, a brand ambassador decked in a floral print suit from the fall collection, and posing on a matching flower-print Vespa.
The brand, owned by Fifth & Pacific Cos. Inc. declined to give first-year sales projections for the store. Real estate sources said the brand would be paying a minimum of 500 pounds, or $775, per square foot for the store’s prime floor space, which is nearest the street entrance.