SCALING BACK: Alexis Mabille is going seasonless. The French designer said Tuesday he would switch to a bespoke approach, foregoing his regular ready-to-wear collections in favor of exclusive lines designed for a reduced number of key retail partners.
Noting that his most successful pieces are timeless designs carried over from one season to the next, Mabille said he would offer a collection of dressy looks, cocktail and evening gowns. Buyers will choose from around 30 sketches and pick from a selection of fabrics and colors.
“I am convinced that the future of the evening gown business needs intimacy, exclusivity and attention,” Mabille said in a statement.
“The concept I’m offering would make my valued partners carry an exclusive collection in their territory. We will offer a unique assortment of exclusive dresses and colors and any client wanting to buy a Mabille dress will find it in her assortment,” he added, saying the approach was inspired by haute couture.
Mabille plans to reduce the brand’s points of sale from around 30 for spring 2020 to a core of 10 by next season. “Our intention is to scale down our number of retailers worldwide and grow a closer and stronger relationship with only a handful of partners,” he explained.
Among them are Harrods in London; Harvey Nichols in Doha; J Boutique in Bahrain; Al Othman in Kuwait and Bahrain; V.O.D. in Dallas, and Sutton in Los Angeles. Other stores, like Joyce in Hong Kong, will host trunk shows for the brand, which also has a directly operated store in Galerie Vivienne in Paris.
“This new type of collaboration will stimulate our imagination and might not be straightforward for everyone,” Mabille said. “I hope you will enjoy my ideas and our new way of working together. I believe it can be exciting, constructive and surely innovative.”
Mabille has not staged a ready-to-wear runway show in two years, switching instead to showroom appointments as he repositioned his main collection to focus on the sophisticated tuxedos and glamorous evening gowns that have won him fans including Katy Perry, Lady Gaga and Dita Von Teese.