BOMBSHELL: Ayler Young’s buzzy line of bombers is set to go on tour.
Young’s Philip Ayler brand of bomber jackets, made in Los Angeles from rare fabrics he sources all over the world, opened a shop-in-shop inside Young’s Frank’s Chop Shop barbershop on Melrose Avenue. The designer repurposed the shop’s former pool table room, totaling about 250 square feet, for a jacket bar to showcase about 45 styles, many of which are exclusive to the Melrose location.
“It’s a selection of some of the rarest jackets I have,” Young said. “It’s a place where people can come try the jackets on and have some fun looking at the fabrics.”
The space features a hand-painted houndstooth design on the walls in a nod to many of his jackets featuring the same print, black tile floors and an illuminated Philip Ayler sign.
The Melrose store, which is a longer-term location, will be followed by a series of pop-up trunk shows over the next three to four months in the U.S., Europe and Asia. Young said he is in the midst of organizing those events, which he hopes will build greater awareness of the brand.
He’s largely already cultivated a strong A-list following with his pieces seen on Kendall Jenner, Gigi Hadid, Lana Del Rey, Mick Jagger and Lady Gaga. Guns N’ Roses also enlisted Young to design the official outerwear of the band’s “Not in This Lifetime” tour, which bore out in limited-edition pieces with each city the band visited.
Still, the opportunity to showcase and meet one-on-one with consumers is the opportunity with the trunk shows, Young said.
“A lot of people, they’ve seen the stuff online, they’ve seen people wearing it, but they haven’t had a chance to try it on themselves,” he said.
It’s also a chance to expose the brand to more retailers looking for limited-edition, buzzy items to bring into their stores. Philip Ayler is sold in the brand’s online shop in addition to The Webster.
While Young said he’s expanded into developing fur and leather jackets, he’s not as interested — at least in the near term — in category growth, choosing to focus his energies on making a name for himself in jackets.
“I think there’s an opportunity and I’ve been approached by other people to make other products, but I decided to keep it simple and not do anything else for the time being because we want to really focus on making one thing really great,” he said. “I purposely put a constraint on the brand when I first started, making only jackets.”
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