Dior’s London Christmas, Christie’s Ann Getty Auction, Slowear Enters Women’s
IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE: Dior is cementing its longstanding relationship with Harrods with a holiday event that will take over the London department store’s windows and facade for a celebration of “The Wonderful World of Dior.”
Running from Nov. 10 to Jan. 3, the multipronged happening will involve events on every floor of the store, including a micro-village on the lower ground floor and a pop-up café. The front of the store on Brompton Road will be adorned with a monumental light installation featuring classic Dior emblems like the compass rose, one of the key symbols of the brand’s 2022 holiday campaign.
Dior, which traditionally stages a summer pop-up at Harrods, will take over 44 windows with gingerbread house-themed displays celebrating all its product categories, from ready-to-wear and leather goods to fragrances and home wares. The theme of the tableaux will be exclusive to Harrods and Dior’s flagship on Avenue Montaigne in Paris.
“We have never led a collaboration of this scale with a department store,” said Pietro Beccari, chairman and chief executive officer of Christian Dior Couture.
“This is an absolute first, and along with the unprecedented exhibition there will be surprises and exclusivities on every floor: from monumental illuminations to entrancing shop windows animating the legendary facade, from two exclusive pop-ups to Café Dior, imagined specially for the event,” he added.
Beccari said Dior’s relationship with Harrods goes back to the beginnings of the French fashion house, with founder Christian Dior attending a show of his collection at the store in 1954.
“Harrods is renowned for its iconic Christmas displays, so it is our pleasure to be partnering with Christian Dior this season to create something truly unique and exceptional for our customers,” said Michael Ward, managing director of Harrods.
“Throughout our history, Dior has been a vital partner for Harrods, with our customers responding well across all categories, so it only made sense that we join forces to bring our clients a most enchanted season,” he added.
Dior will launch a dedicated app to allow visitors to book slots for the exhibition, featuring small-scale reproductions of three key buildings: the Paris flagship, which reopened last year after extensive renovations; founder Christian Dior’s childhood home in Granville, Normandy and the Château de La Colle Noire, the estate he bought in the South of France.
“These have been reproduced, with virtuosity, in reinterpretation of the centuries-old tradition of gingerbread houses. This incredible prowess made possible thanks to multiple ‘métiers’ and savoir-faire expertise — from sculpture to animation — celebrates the excellence of Dior and the magic of its creations in all forms, from haute couture to perfumes,” Beccari said.
The visit, which takes around 15 minutes, is augmented with immersive video projections, micromapping and holographic projections to take visitors on a journey from dawn until dusk.
The store will also carry a number of exclusives and pre-launches. Among the exclusives are square trunks embroidered with gold thread, carrying micro versions of handbags including the Saddle and the Lady Dior. High-end products on offer include the Miss Dior chair designed by Philippe Starck. — JOELLE DIDERICH
GOING, GOING, GETTY: When Christie’s was invited to sell the estate of Ann and Gordon Getty, the auction house was invited to the late couple’s home and “really told to take it all,” according to Elizabeth Seigel, Christie’s vice president and specialist in private and iconic collections. This includes what WWD can reveal is a museum-quality collection of tapestries, handbags and home furnishings that will be available for auction across about 10 sales.
The Getty family, as Seigel described, “is who many people know on the West Coast for the Getty Collection in Los Angeles. They really held court in philanthropic circles in San Francisco. Their home was a beacon of that world and now we are throwing the doors open to celebrate some of their favorite causes. We are selling all the contents of their home from paintings on the wall to furniture and textiles in the basement — all for philanthropic causes.” The family also holds immense political sway in California and has close relationships with officials including House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Governor Gavin Newsom.
Mrs. Getty’s basement textile archive, including panels and swatches from France, England and India —many of them dating back to the 1700s — will be the primary focus of six online sales that will conclude Oct. 24. These sales will also include items from Mrs. Getty’s jewelry collection — much of it featuring important pieces from India along with jewelers like Ilias Lalaounis and Tiffany & Co. Additionally, there are handbags from her collection, including pieces from Hermès and Christian Dior.
“Quality is the current thread throughout the collection,” said Seigel. “The handbag collection is really special as well — there are some of the best names and styles, whether its Hermès, Chanel, Louis Vuitton or VBH. They are bags you don’t often see at auction.”
Due to the sheer number of lots in the sale, Christie’s has not placed reserves on any of the online sales lots. Estimates for online sales start as low as $100, to encourage new bidders to enter the ring. Evening sales estimates are, of course, much higher — with a set of Meissen plates expected to realize a minimum $150,000.
“The Getty’s chose their favorite West Cost philanthropic causes to divide the money between — they show two different trajectories,” said Seigel. “Mr. Getty was a composter so some of the proceeds are going to the San Francisco Conservancy, the San Francisco Opera and Symphony. Mrs. Getty trained as an archaeologist, which I think speaks to her collection and how it digs into history. She chose to donate to the Leakey Collection and the Berkeley Geochronology Center and the University of San Francisco.”
Christie’s estimates that the entire Getty collection will bring in around $180 million for these charities combined. — MISTY WHITE SIDELL
SLOW-WOMEN: Slowear is testing the waters for its womenswear range, currently accounting for between 5 percent and 10 percent of its sales. And for the first time it hosted a Milan Fashion Week presentation to unveil the spring collection.
Welcoming guests at Slowear’s flagship in the arty Brera district — an experiential space called Slowear 18, combining retail space with a mixology bar and café — chief executive officer Marco Bernardini said the company is testing what works best for the female lineup in terms of distribution and communication, acknowledging that the current most relevant market is Italy and there is little international exposure.
“We thought an event was a great start, the range has already received attention and I think it deserves to grow also communication-wise,” Bernardini said.
The lineup on show was a highly curated edit by stylist Tanya Jones, brought on board by the internal women’s design team led by Misa Tesic to distill their vision of urban gear injected with ease and practicality, the same applied to menswear, the company’s forte.
Earthy tones, best exemplified by ivory roomy pants cropped at the ankles and paired with poet-sleeved drop-shouldered coats, as well as fluid linen pantsuits trading blazers for elongated vests, mingled with sorbet-colored attire. A pea green woolen blazer in the same weight of crisp cotton was matched to linen pants in a slightly lighter shade, while a pleated A-line skirt paired with a voluminous utilitarian jacket was done in a light pink.
“The conversation with Misa revolved around the brand’s DNA and its expertise in menswear. We added a feminine touch, never tacky or too coy, it’s all about urban ladies, the ones seen strolling around Brera,” said Jones.
Asked to elaborate on prospects for the women’s range, Bernardini said it’s too early to predict sales volumes but he looks forward to 2023 to jumpstart a dedicated strategy.
An established menswear player, the Venice-based Slowear is parent to Incotex casual pants; Zanone high-end knitwear; Glanshirt casual shirts; Montedoro outerwear, and Officina Slowear accessories and footwear. As reported earlier this year, the company opened its third U.S. retail outpost but first in New York in NoHo. — MARTINO CARRERA
UNLOCKING TIFFANY: Tiffany & Co. continues to refine its image with a new shop-in-shop dedicated to its most recent jewelry launch.
The LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton-helmed jeweler has set up an immersive experience in its temporary Fifth Avenue flagship in New York City, dedicated to its new “Lock” collection.
The pop-up appears to offer a kind of luxurious, den-like setting — housed inside a sapphire blue cube with matching carpeting and ambient lighting.
The installation could provide a glimpse of Tiffany’s forthcoming renovated Fifth Avenue flagship when it opens in 2023. While the project began before LVMH’s acquisition, plans for the flagship have since changed significantly and are being devised by star architect Peter Marino.
For the “Lock” installation, Tiffany collaborated with artist Francesco Vullo who made sculptures that highlight the bracelets’ proprietary hinge feature.
Pop-up visitors will also be offered the chance to have their “Lock” bracelets hand-engraved by Tiffany artisans. The pop-up will remain on view until Nov. 1. — M.W.S.
GET READY FOR GU: Uniqlo parent Fast Retailing is expanding the reach of its lower-priced, trend-driven brand GU with with a pop-up store in New York’s SoHo. The company told WWD Tuesday that the shop will open on Oct. 7.
As reported, the SoHo pop-up will be open for roughly a year, and will be GU’s first foray into the U.S. market. It will be used by the company to gather opinions and feedback from U.S. consumers. GU said that it aims for the store to be a store “that is loved by and grows together with the city’s SoHo neighborhood, which welcomes people of diverse cultures, values and lifestyles,” in a statement. The theme of the store will be “Tokyo to SoHo.”
In addition to a selection of popular products for women and men, GU will also be bringing its “GU Osharista” style advisers to customers in its new SoHo store. The term “osharista” was created by combining the Japanese word oshare (pronounced oh-sha-ray), meaning fashionable, and the English word fashionista.
GU will also launch an official website and social media accounts for the U.S. market from Wednesday, and it has various promotions planned for the opening day of the SoHo store. These include free gifts to early visitors and the first 3,000 customers to make a purchase. — KELLY WETHERILLE