TOKYO — J Brand founder and chief executive officer Jeff Rudes was in town Tuesday to tout the denim and sportswear brand’s new Osaka store and “record-breaking sales.”
“Our business is growing and our fall season is one of the best — if not the best season — of retail we’ve ever seen,” said the executive, who hosted a dinner for Japanese fashion editors.
Rudes declined to give sales figures and said it was too soon to talk about the brand’s retail expansion plans beyond the Osaka store. He told WWD in August that the firm was negotiating for a location in Los Angeles, to open by next summer, and a New York site expected to bow by the end of next year. He provided no further details on plans for the brand’s retail rollout during his visit here.
“Nothing has changed. We’re on the same health plan as Theory,” he said with a laugh. “[Fast Retailing is] letting us do what we do best.”
The 215-square-foot Osaka store, located in the Hankyu Umeda department store, opens today and complements the brand’s 120 wholesale points of sale in Japan, where the company recently set up its own subsidiary to manage the business.
Rudes said the store gives the Japanese consumer a sense of the brand’s “breadth” in terms of its denim and ready-to-wear.
“For denim, it’s known as a very up-to-date, forward market, especially in the fashion sense,” he said, adding that the brand’s slim-fitting jeans and apparel work particularly well with Asian consumers. The average Japanese retail price for a pair of jeans is 19,000 yen, or $195, in line with that in the U.S.
Elsewhere, Rudes said the brand is doing brisk business in China, where it has a presence in Beijing through Lane Crawford and seven stores in Shanghai through denim retailer O’Blu.
“We do a very nice business at very high prices,” he said, noting that J Brand’s jeans generally retail for between $400 and $500 a pair in China, due to high retailing costs and a generous mark-up.
The annual Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic in Pacific Palisades this weekend drew Kate Hudson, Tracee Ellis Ross, Laura Dern and more. See pictures of the star-studded event on WWD.com. (📷: @chelsealaurenla) #wwdeye
In his new book “Hollywood Royale,” Andy Warhol’s Protégé Matthew Rolston celebrates the Eighties revival of Hollywood glamour. Featuring more than 100 portraits taken by Rolston from 1977 to 1993, the book contains photos of icons like Michael Jackson, Cyndi Lauper, and @drewbarrymore, pictured here in 1991. “Hollywood Royale,” out today, will be accompanied by an exhibition opening at Los Angeles’ Fahey/Klein Gallery on March 1. #wwdeye
"Nowadays when life is not so happy with everything going on in the world, I think people come to me for a little bit of whimsy and color and fun." - Designer Rebecca De Ravenel on her cult-favorite jewelry line. (📸 : @vsteves) #wwd40
“Everyone is talking about how the retail industry is struggling, but I think it’s an incredible time because brands who are doing something different and innovative are setting themselves up for the future,” said @adamgoldston, who founded the luxury athletic brand @apl with his brother @ryangoldsten. The Goldston’s are part of WWD’s 40 under 40: a group of industry notables. See the rest of the list on WWD.com. (📷: @vsteves) #wwd40
@eyeswoon blogger Athena Calderone debuted her first-ever cookbook, “Cook Beautiful,” which is heavily centered on the presentation and visual expression of food. Pictured here are her miso glazed carrots from the book. Get the recipe on WWD.com. (📷: @johnny_miller_) #wwdeye
“It’s passion that helps get anybody to a certain point and it’s what’s propelled me,” said Kith founder @ronniefieg, one of WWD’s 40 under 40: a group of industry notables who are changing the face of retail, fashion and beauty. Fieg, who opened a Manhattan flagship on October 7, began his career at age 13 as a stock boy and salesman for footwear chain David Z. “I think staying true to [my] beliefs, hard work and passion have gotten me to where [Kith] is today.” See the rest of the 40 at WWD.com. (📷: @vsteves) #wwd40
25-year-old @samweaving is about to break out this fall, starring in Netflix’s horror film “The Babysitter,” fittingly out today on Friday the 13th. That’s not the only place you’ll be seeing her, though — Weaving’s got a role Showtime’s “SMILF” and another alongside Frances McDormand and Woody Harrelson in “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri.” Though she’s got a full plate at the moment, there’s one role she’s got her eye on: Marilyn Monroe. “I’m a little too young at the moment, but it’s on my bucket list,” the actress told WWD (📷: @dandoperalski) #wwdeye
BFF's Poppy Jamie and Suki Waterhouse celebrated the launch of their bag line Pop x Suki at Nordstrom last night. "The line is really about our friendship, and how we are so different but complement each other," said Waterhouse. 👯 (📷: Katie Jones) #wwdeye
After designing the new @louisvuitton and @bulgariofficial flagships and a @chanelofficial boutique opening in Japan, @petermarinoarchitect has another project on his plate: The Lobster Club. Located in the Seagram Building, it’s the famed architect’s first restaurant project in New York, serving up modern Japanese brasserie-style cuisine. Bronze hues, bespoke material detailing, blush and chartreuse tones and a heavy emphasis on Picasso can be seen throughout. Mark your calendars for Nov. 1 for the much-anticipated opening. (📷: @clint_spaulding) #wwdeye