If you ever wanted to get an up close look into Linda Fargo’s personal style, visit the upcoming shop-in-shop, “Linda’s at Bergdorf Goodman.”
It’s a new format arriving to Bergdorf’s in May, personally curated by Fargo, Bergdorf Goodman’s senior vice president, women’s fashion director and store presentation, and filled with ready-to-wear, accessories, curios, vintage pieces, decorative home pieces, beauty products, edibles, books and art — unique items she’s discovered during her travels, through her social network and dealings with an international array of designers and artisans, and by simply shopping.
“Twenty five percent of what you will see in “Linda’s at Bergdorf Goodman” are literally taken out of my closet,” Fargo tells WWD, during an interview inside a mock-up of the shop on the eighth floor of the store. The real shop, which Fargo stresses will be permanent and not a pop-up, will be housed on the fourth floor in a 600-square-foot space overlooking Central Park.
“We will reset this shop four times a year. It’s not a one-time thing,” Fargo said, adding that the offerings will evolve constantly, with pieces added weekly and with an emphasis on see-now-buy-now.
“This will be a very unique fashion experience, very reflective of what’s inside my closet,” Fargo said. She’s actually has five closets and six rolling racks at her home in Sutton Place, on Manhattan’s East Side. There, Fargo said, you can always find something classic, like a simple black shirt, or something flamboyant, like a canary yellow, fully beaded flapper dress. Hence, “Linda’s at Bergdorf Goodman” will showcase a mix of the exotic, along with Fargo’s take on the “essentials.”
“I’m a magpie by nature,” Fargo said. “My taste and style runs the gamut from clear-cut classics worn in fresh ways to dramatic and risky choices that are borderline fashion faux pas. I believe in accumulating personal signatures as you age, but I also believe it’s important not to bore yourself.”
At a time when luxury is a tough sell, it’s important for Bergdorf Goodman to be innovative, offer something different from the pack and to have some fun. “We won’t offer the usual suspects. It’s not about shopping by brand,” Fargo said. “It’s a complete mix of designers carried by the store and new ones that haven’t been carried by the store.”
Among the offerings: “couture tribal” feathered jewelry from Lisa Eisner; cotton mochilas from Colombia; “Barre Infernale Noire” chocolates by Francois Pralus; Patricia Fields trenchcoats hand-painted by Judy Morlock; a lip necklace found in a New York junk shop; a Ranjana Khan bag embellished with turquoise and crystal; Christian Lacroix vintage jewelry; cashmere capes by Gabriela Hearst from Uruguay; a Tippi Hedren special-edition Barbie doll set in a frightening scene from Alfred Hitchcock’s “The Birds.”
There will also be some collaborative pieces from designers, and a “Linda” branded red scented lipstick. “It’s a perfect red,” she said, and consistent with what she regularly applies to herself.
A select assortment from the in-store collection will also be available online at bergdorfgoodman.com. Many of Fargo’s coveted items from her closet are being reproduced for the shop but on a limited basis.
On Thursday, Fargo appears in the mock-up wearing leopard print Dries Van Noten pants and a black Theory top. “Leopard is my signature obsession,” she said. “It’s a perennial. I wear it year in and out.”
And whatever she wears doesn’t need to be a designer price point. “My own theory is something $50 or $5 can be as beautiful as something that costs $5,000 or $50,000.”
“In an increasingly homogeneous retail landscape, we’ve noticed the resurgence of the personally curated boutique, and no one has more personal style than Linda Fargo,” said Joshua Schulman, president of Bergdorf Goodman and NMG International.
“When I travel with Linda, the most common question I hear is, ‘What is that fabulous thing you’re wearing?’ So I asked her, ‘If you had your own shop, what would it look like?’ Of course, she came back with a singular vision for the merchandise, visuals, service and the overall experience.”
To keep it lively, Fargo said that those shopping ‘Linda’s at Bergdorf Goodman’ will be greeted by a hostess, asked to sign in the VSP, or very special person, guest book and offered infused water or seasonal tea — mint-infused tea from Casablanca is offered. Then they can browse before using a fitting room clad with photos, invitations and artwork from Fargo’s personal collection of memorabilia.
There will be music in the background and clients will be offered the Linda drink. “We’re calling it the ‘slippery slope,'” Fargo said, noting that the ingredients are to be determined. “We’re hoping people have a drink or two and come out of the fitting room in their lingerie,” she joked. “We would love it if people have fun.”