Yes, after months of the rumor mills running at a fever pitch high with will he or won’t he be designing a collection, it has been confirmed just now in WWD that the uber designer Alexander MCQueen will indeed be designing a line for Target. McQueen will be one of the first designers creating a line under Target’s Design Initiative, where he will be designing a version of his McQ line for the mass retailer. The line is currently being described as having a rock ‘n’ roll vibe with all of the requisite edgy details that go with that type of look – studs, tattoo-printed fabric, black, etc… but will also feature lightweight sweaters, skinny jeans, bubble dresses, slim skirts and cuffed shorts. There will be signature pieces as well, a coated cotton poplin black trench, a gray denim cropped studded jacket, a men’s wear-inspired tuxedo blazer. The Designer Initiative is different from’s Target’s current designer program, Go International, which focuses on capsule collections from popular, up and coming designers in the industry. So if in the current economy you thought the McQueen label was out of your reach, think again, as Target has just provided you a way to have a little McQueen in your day.
Zappos Blogs: target
The Estee Lauder Companies, the purveyors of luxury cosmetics and stalwart beauty boutique anchor in most upscale retail shopping centers, has taken a mass retailing turn akin to a seismic shift in the shopping universe. It announced its partnership with Walmart and their plans to sell fragrances as its first step into the mass market fragrance category. Estee will sell fragrances under its Aramis and designer fragrance division, with a trio of scents called C-Thru launching in Walmart doors this December. Starting in January the roll out will continue to Target and Kohls, with additional mass retailing doors following soon there after.
Each fragrance is named after a gemstone, Ruby is concocted of rose, freesia, raspberry and sandalwood; Purple Diamond, with a juice of plum, black currant, Indian night-blooming jasmine and vanilla; and Blue Opal which is concocted of watermelon, red berries, lilac and a wet skin accord. Estee pulled out all of the stops when making each of the scents as they worked with the power three of fragrance makers, International Flavors & Fragrances, Givaudan and Firmenich. With a price point higher than most at Walmart, it remains to be seen if the collaboration will be successful. The company is targeting young women ages 15 to 24, with a fragrance price point of $17 (1oz.) and $25 (2.5oz.), respectively.
Why now? Is it the current world economic conditions, where just last week the Dow Jones was falling an average 300 + points a day? Is it the reality that the Wall Street unabashed spending boom has gone the way of the Studebaker, dressing for first class travel or getting a real meal on your flight? Or maybe it is simpler still, the competition for the single digit luxury customer’s income has become a very tight and competitive battlefield, where many opponents will be trampled in their efforts to obtain the holy grail, the elusive luxe market dollar. One wonders had this been ten or twenty years ago, would the firm have snapped close its upscale Fifth Avenue doors at the mere suggestion of such a partnership. Whatever it is, previously prudent times have proven the most successful luxury goods companies are those with designers that have lower priced lines — beauty or fashion — which provide quick turn around of quality items, variety and speaks to the masses.
My favorite ‘retailer to the masses’ is that red bull’s-eye logo behemoth, Target. I love the wide aisles, the clean, efficient design and the plethora of designers that bring an upscale creed to their offerings. But what I’m currently loving about Target is its new environmental approach. The retailer continues to roll-out their environmental ‘green’ concept with their newest store, the 137,000-square-foot store in Stafford Township on the Jersey Shore. The store, built on two former landfills, is situated in a new open air retail strip, which meets the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Green Building rating system.
The unit features an 8-foot beauty section filled with eco-friendly lines like Bare Escentuals, Burt’s Bees and Dr. Bronner’s, recycled shopping carts, organic foods in an expanded market section and the expansion of bamboo items in their domestic section. Although Target’s competitors — Kmart and Wal-Mart — are nearby, there is no need for Target to be worried, the competitor stores are older store formats and lack the latest product offerings and the environmental friendly format that the new super Target offers. I’m all for saving the remaining ozone layer, helping Mother Nature and living green, but the landfill thing, not so much.
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