The designer stepped out of the Los Angeles market in 2015 when her door on Third Street closed and she’s now reentering the market by planting a flag in the bustling neighborhood street scene on Larchmont Boulevard next door to Larchmont Beauty Center. It’s a charming, quaint part of town where the streets are wide and street parking lines storefronts.
Turk is set to open a 2,000-square-foot space that will be home to her namesake label as well as Mr. Turk, marking the fifth door out of 12 to carry the men’s line. Each collection will have its own separate door facing out onto Larchmont, with a shared interior.
“Being a Los Angeles-based company, we’re really happy to have a store again in L.A. because it’s been about a year and a half,” Turk said. “We were looking for a new space for a while and the reason I liked Larchmont is because it feels very neighborhoody. I’ve shopped at Larchmont Beauty Center for years and there’s quite a bit of foot traffic on the street. It was a central location and so we just thought it made sense for the brand.”
The space, at 212 Larchmont Boulevard, is set to bow this weekend.
While each Trina Turk store is designed to reflect the community it’s in, Larchmont will take a new store design approach with what Turk described as a clean, modern backdrop for her bright prints. The space is mostly neutral tones with brass and oak paneling. Pops of yellow accent the store.
Larchmont comes on the heels of a Trina Turk pop-up that opened earlier in March at the tony Shops on El Paseo, where Burberry, Escada, St. John, Ralph Lauren, Stuart Weitzman and others take up space. The store is expected to remain open through April, at which time the company will decide whether to extend its stay there, Turk said. Palm Desert, about 30 minutes out from Turk’s Palm Springs store, is aimed at studying the market and seeing if there’s appetite enough to support a permanent door. Early reads would seem to indicate potential.
“So far, the store’s been great. We’re about two weeks in and it’s been really, really strong,” Turk said. “This is the absolute prime season in Palm Springs. March and April are probably the two best months out there so that was not without forethought they [the landlord] offered this space.”
That said, the designer pointed out the door is pulling in a new client bases around 70 percent with Turk noting some of those customers had not even heard of the brand.
Once Larchmont is off the ground, the company will turn its efforts to boosting its e-commerce, with no other brick-and-mortar stores in the pipeline. While the company has a web site, it’s been mostly focused on functionality that makes shopping it easy. This next phase will be about adding content in the form of a blog and online magazine.
“It’s the fastest-growing part of our business,” Turk said of the web. “We still think it’s really important to have brick-and-mortar stores. For example, when you walk into our Palm Springs store, you really get the feeling of what the brand is about. It really says a lot about optimism and print and color and all these things that we stand for as a brand. We haven’t really, up until now, equaled that experience on our web site. And, as we all know, mall traffic is down and so in addition to the fact that it’s the fastest-growing part of our business, it’s also the most profitable in terms of the margin that we make on each piece we sell.”
For more on Trina Turk in WWD: