PARIS — “You know I love new ventures; I think it is perfect for the label,” Karl Lagerfeld said about his latest surprising project: a collaborative private brand with Seibu Sogo.
Beginning in September, Limited Edition by Karl Lagerfeld will be offered exclusively in 15 Seibu Sogo locations including Seibu Ikebukuro and Sogo Yokohama, as well as the Japanese retailer’s online department store.
The label spans women’s ready-to-wear and accessories based on the design concept of “elegance with a touch of fun,” according to Seibu Sogo.
“I approached it the same way I approached the collection we did in Brazil, but this time with a Japanese feeling in the mood,” said Lagerfeld, referring to a 75-piece collection he did for Brazilian fast-fashion chain Riachuelo this spring.
Lagerfeld becomes the first international designer to collaborate with Limited Edition, a private-label Seibu Sogo introduced in 2009, focusing on quality over price in an effort to achieve a unique market positioning.
The brand launched with a collaborative collection with Japanese designer Atsuro Tayama, and has since teamed with a number of Japanese designers including Junko Shimada.
Offering a range of items — including women’s and men’s rtw and accessories, baby wear, interior items, and sportswear — Limited Edition’s sales have grown 20 percent over last year, according to Seibu Sogo.
In March, the retailer added Limited Edition Area Mode, a line consisting of everyday wear developed by suburban stores specifically for locals to meet regional needs and demands. Seibu Sogo also partnered with designers such as Yasutoshi Ezumi this March, launching its premium line, Limited Edition Platinum.
Seven & I Group, the parent company of Seibu Sogo, also boasts its own private brand, Sept Premiere, which has collaborated with Jean Paul Gaultier since the fall 2015 season. The group recently announced a collaborative project with Kenzo Takada, set to launch in the fall.
Lagerfeld — Chanel’s couturier and Fendi’s fur and rtw designer — also has a signature fashion house that has ramped up its global expansion with a “masstige” positioning for leather goods and rtw tinged with a rock-‘n’-roll sensibility.
He has also picked up the pace of licenses, joint ventures and collaborations, like the new one with Seibu Sogo.
“I think it is a modern way for a label so totally different from Chanel or Fendi. That’s what I always wanted,” he told WWD from Saint-Tropez, where he was shooting a campaign for Chanel’s Coco Cuba resort collection shown in Havana earlier this month. It stars models Stella Tennant and Mica Arganaraz.