NEW YORK — New York Fashion Week is a busy time for the Beckham family. Victoria Beckham showcased her spring collection on Sunday and then hosted a launch event for her Estée Lauder cosmetics collection on Monday night. Her husband David, meanwhile, was the guest of honor at his own launch event at Saks Fifth Avenue for his Kent & Curwen brand on Monday night.
“My son had a book signing yesterday and my wife had a show yesterday morning. I had my event and then I’m back flying home to our other kids who are with my mom at the moment. I’m going to rescue my mom because I’m sure she’s had a couple of late nights spoiling them,” Beckham said during the event on an outdoor terrace at Saks.
Beckham was instrumental in bringing the venerable British brand into Seven Global, his joint venture with Simon Fuller and Global Brands Group, two years ago, and this marks the first time the revamped collection is being sold at a retail store in the States.
Flanked by Daniel Kearns, Kent & Curwen’s creative director, Beckham said, “When I first brought Kent & Curwen into the licensing company, I was excited about it, but I didn’t think I’d be able to get it to the point it is so quickly. But once we put Daniel on the team, that’s when I realized that this brand has real potential.”
He said the brand is especially popular in Asia and Europe, notably London, where it will open a store in Covent Garden this month.
“What we’ve achieved in London has bypassed anything that we thought,” he said. “We always wanted to bring real authenticity back into the brand. We’ve been around for many, many years — 1926 — so when we went into the archive and saw what we’d done in the past, that for me was the moment I realized we could get here.”
Tracy Margolies, chief merchant for Saks, said the store was especially drawn to the “English schoolboy with a modern twist” aesthetic that Kearns has created. “It’s a really fun collection and I think it’ll do great,” she said.
Saks is showcasing the collection in a pop-up on the seventh floor of its flagship through Sept. 25 and has also devoted its windows and a feature in its magalog to the label. “It’s a pretty comprehensive launch,” she said. The collection will also be carried in Brickell City Centre in Miami, Beverly Hills and Toronto and Sherway Gardens in Ontario in Canada.
Kearns said the brand’s founders Eric Kent and Dorothy Curwen began as manufacturers of repp ties for universities and pioneered the cricket sweater so there was plenty of history to draw from. “We have that authenticity and that legitimacy to the British sporting heritage, so it’s the ideal vehicle to revisit and create a new wardrobe for contemporary men,” he said.
Beckham is especially eager to open the Covent Garden store on Floral Street.
“We had the store on Savile Row, but we just felt that where we’ve taken the brand, it’s not a Savile Row brand and it was better off in another destination,” he said.
One Beckham family member who may not make the store-opening festivities is Brooklyn, who just started at Parsons School of Design to study photography.
“I moved him here three weeks ago,” his dad said. “He’s excited about being here. It’s what we all want for our kids — to be challenged and also passionate. What better place for him to do what he does, which is photography, than here in New York? I’ve told him many times, New York is a place where people want to be the best and they’ll step over you to be the best. The opportunity that he’s been given is a great one and at some point, you just have to step back and say, ‘Now it’s up to you.’”