LONDON — Alessandra Rich started off with a handful of lace-trimmed evening gowns and has since wooed everyone from Beyoncé to the influencer set and the Duchess of Cambridge, with her flair for statement dresses, glamour and just the right amount of kitsch.
As her label is about to turn 10 — and demand for online services reaches an all-time high — Rich is unveiling her first e-commerce platform, to reach her growing audience directly.
“For the past 10 years we have grown the business by refining our wholesale partnerships to build a carefully curated worldwide distribution and this will always be an integral part of our business. However, it has always been our plan to develop e-commerce and on this important anniversary, it was time to launch this new chapter,” said Rich.
The designer has been focused on building direct and “very real” relationships with her customers from the get-go, hosting them at her London or Milan showrooms or inviting them to the label’s buzzy Paris shows.
But as the label’s client base grows internationally and hosting in-person events and appointments comes with a new set of challenges, providing a “direct-to-consumer experience on a worldwide scale” gained new importance.
The site will launch with the brand’s fall 2020 “Belle de Nuit” range and will feature imagery and a film shot by the brothers Alessandro and Gianluca Oliva.
It will stock the collection in its entirety, which over the past 10 years has grown far beyond the label’s signature evening dresses to knitwear, tailoring, shoes and accessory hits galore, including crystal earrings, belts and hair clips. A series of exclusives is in the works.
“We wanted [the site] to be as user-friendly as possible, presenting the products in a clean and simple way. As we now offer every category from ready-to-wear through accessories to shoes, it is important for us that customers can shop the full look,” said Rich, adding that the COVID-19 outbreak didn’t fully disrupt the brand’s working schedule and they were able to forge ahead with manufacturing its fall 2020 collection once lockdown measures lifted in Italy.