Macy’s is collaborating with Nicole Williams English, the Canadian model and fashion designer.
Together, they have developed the Nicole Williams English x Bar III collection, featuring oversize blazers, halter top dresses, matching sets and versatile separates. The collection will launch March 10 on Macy’s e-commerce and in 392 Macy’s locations.
The 38-year-old influencer, who goes by the name Nicole Williams, rose to fame after starring in the hit E! television show, “WAGS.” She also designs her own line called Nia Lynn Collection, which she launched in 2017 with swimwear and has since added cover-ups, pants, tops and bandannas. She has 2.2 million followers on Instagram.
Born in Newfoundland, Canada, Williams said she’s been designing her own clothes since she was eight years old. Her mother, a seamstress with her own company, taught Williams how to use a sewing machine and she made her own clothes. She started modeling as a teen.
In 2018, Williams met Hilda Batayneh, executive creative director of Reunited Clothing, a New York-based design house and manufacturer that works with Macy’s private brand, Bar III, and discussed potentially collaborating on the brand. They’ve been working on the collaboration for the past six months.
Describing the Nicole Williams English x Bar III designs, Williams said, “The collection is modern spring pieces of varying silhouettes. I have oversize blazers, stretchy dresses, cutout bodysuits, crop tops, a sleek line of trousers and rompers. It’s a beautiful collection, we have something for everybody, a great color palette and really cool patterns.”
Williams said when she started designing the line she wanted to make this for the girl on the go, a woman who needs to be able to style herself easily.
“I did this collection to mix and match pieces. When you’re going out the door, you grab your blazer and can throw it over anything. These pieces look great with sneakers if you’re running to the store, but then they also look great with heels and a bag if you’re going out to dinner. I think my customers and my followers love to watch me for my style. I have a really ‘streetwear meets tomboy chic street style.’ They’re always asking me for tips. I tend to throw on a pair of sneakers with a full suit,” she said.
“I just wanted to make something for everybody and be very versatile. I’m hoping this does very well because I already have my ideas for the next one,” she said.
Asked to predict what she thinks will be the best seller, Williams said, “We’re really in love with the oversize suit. There are these two suits — a color-block suit and one that’s all one color. They are amazing. The suit is definitely going to be hit. I really, really love it.”
The Nicole Williams English x Bar III collection, which features 19 styles, comes in sizes XXS to XXL, with select pieces available in plus sizing. The assortment ranges from $49.50 to $99.50.
Explaining the design process, Williams said they went back and forth on Zoom, and then she recently came to New York to try everything on personally. “I like to make tweaks based to my trying it on myself. We made a few changes. I stayed in New York a couple of days and we finalized the samples,” said Williams, who now lives in Los Angeles, but earlier in her career spent six years in New York modeling.
Durand Guion, vice president of Macy’s fashion office, said, “We are thrilled to celebrate and amplify Nicole’s impeccable sense of style through this collaboration with Bar III. Her Instagram images alone inspire so many to confidently express their personal style and we are excited for consumers to have access to this through her design lens.”
Guion said Macy’s has been working on a series of collaborations and has found a really nice rhythm. “We are a brand that sells lots of brands. We’re just finding as we continue to reach a younger consumer and a super fashion-oriented consumer, the Influencer space you can not deny it. We’ve spent a tremendous amount of time tracking them.”
He said Williams really fits the bill. “She’s so fashionable and so stylish. She’s able to put things on, and her personal style comes through. She seemed like a natural for Bar III, which is a young brand.”
He added that he wants to work with influencers who aren’t just interested in putting their names on a label. “It’s individuals who really want to sit with us, go through the process, work on the clothes and work on the fabrications. The way she wears the clothes, you can tell she was one with the process,” he said.
The collaboration consists of one delivery and then Macy’s will evaluate. He said Williams was very involved from the designs to the photo shoot, where she’s featured in the images.
The Bar III area houses brands such as And Now This, Guess, BCBG and other contemporary brands.
Describing Williams’ aesthetic and appeal, Guion said, “I think it’s sexy, it’s confident, it’s bold. I also think it’s comfortable. She brings a level of accessibility and comfort even to things that might seem quite bold and quite sexy. What she does and why we fell in love with her, she really steps it up. I think coming out of the pandemic and people really wanting to come out and express themselves, the timing with her is great. She’s that woman. She’s accomplished, confident and in love.”
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