ABBOUD’S RUN FOR HOME
Byline: Leonard McCants
NEW YORK — Joseph Abboud is looking for a grand slam in the home arena.
Joining designers such as Calvin Klein, Ralph Lauren, Donna Karan and Giorgio Armani, Abboud has launched a home products line that includes 12 licensees and about 12 product classifications, from bedding and small furniture to bath accessories and flatware.
The home category is part of a five-prong strategy, which also includes a repositioning of the women’s collection to the bridge category from designer and a plan to open a signature store by September, all aimed at building the label into a lifestyle brand, spurred by its purchase by GFT Net last summer.
Known for a muted color palette and abundant use of texture in its signature suits, neckwear and shirts, Joseph Abboud should translate into home, according to Traci Young, vice president of marketing, public relations and creative services.
“There is a specific point of view that is very different than what is being offered out there,” Young said. “Joseph Abboud has a distinct point of view. We’re not about florals and logos and bright primary colors.”
The line will be targeted to the luxury home consumer, with distribution focused on retailers like Saks Fifth Avenue, Marshall Fields, Bloomingdale’s and other high-end specialty stores.
“In the home, people want quality, luxury and details,” she said. “And they are willing to spend money on their home. There seems to be a return to opulence in the home.”
Some of the products, like bath and bedding accessories, have been available since 1998. Mattresses were the most recent addition, with a license signed with Simmons last year. The full range of Joseph Abboud Home will be available for the first time during home furnishings market week in April, Young added.
The move to reposition the women’s collection would place it in the same category as the men’s line. The women’s line generates about $6 million of Abboud’s estimated $120 million volume.
For the first Joseph Abboud boutique, the company is seeking space along Fifth and Madison Avenues between 50th and 57th Streets.
“We are absolutely ready,” Young said. “We have a concept design and an architect set.”
After opening the New York store, there are plans to open about 15 other boutiques within the next three years, she added.