Living is strife and torment, disappointment and love and sacrifice, golden sunsets and black storms. I said that some time ago, and today I do not think I would add one word.
Fashion brand Esprit has re-entered the North American market, having just opened its first two locations on the continent: Edmonton’s West Edmonton Mall and Vancouver’s Metropolis at Metrotown.
A grand opening launch on May 25 includes an in-house performance by singer and social media star Caroline Vreeland (granddaughter of fashion icon Diana Vreeland).
The re-birth of the brand began with its partnership with Montreal-based Freemark Apparel Brands, which is coordinating the expansion of the company’s Canadian operations.
Looking to reach a youth market, Esprit has launched a street-level #ImPerfect campaign which draws from party culture of the ’70s, ’80s, and ’90s and the above featured campaign billboards are dotted throughout Vancouver and the suburbs.
This campaign comes hot on the heels of the earlier 2016 street-level campaign, with controversial blogger Leandra Medine (aka Man Repeller), which created a humorous series on how to create #ImPerfect dance moves imagery during your daily commute.
Freemark’s vice president of sales and co-owner, Lawrence Routtenberg, said that Esprit’s previous store locations were often quite large and this time around, stores will generally be in the 1,500 to 2,500 square foot range to create more of an intimate boutique feel. The two stores also feature casual west coast-inspired interiors with natural wood finishings, which were designed in Germany, where Esprit’s corporate office is located.
Founded in California in 1968, Esprit has been a retailer for men, women, and children. Leaving North America in 2012 to focus on the European and Asian markets, the brand has collections ranging from casual to dressy.
Routtenberg revealed that long-term, the brand will look to carefully open freestanding Canadian stores, while being respectful to the brand’s roughly 250 Canadian wholesale specialty accounts. Ultimately, he said that Canada could see about 30 or so Esprit stores, though exact numbers would be contingent on opportunity and the economy.
Esprit wants only the ‘best’ locations for its stores and, as a result, top malls will be targeted. For example, this fall, Esprit is confirmed to be opening its third Canadian store at Mississauga’s Square One Shopping Centre. Urban street front locations may also be considered, with Robson Street in Vancouver, as a possibility. Eventually, outlet stores could be added to the mix, Routtenberg said.
Yaletown, Vancouver, BC
In the past week, New York City-based jeweller Tiffany & Co. released three incredible announcements that have caught luxury speculators off guard. First, the incredible renderings of the interior and exterior overhaul of its freestanding Vancouver flagship, the unveiling of the Blue Book 2016 in Vancouver, and lastly, the announcement, this past Thursday, that legendary Grace Coddington had been brought on board as a ‘Creative Director’.
According to renderings provided by Retail-Insider, the store’s facade will be completely re-done, including a new rounded corner entryway, a trademark Atlas figure holding a clock, and larger Tiffany-blue fabric awnings that will replace the building’s current glass canopies. Modern, yet with a hint of 1950’s chic. Very clean, sleek and timeless.
The artist’s renderings also show the Atlas figure carrying the weight of a clock the size of a globe on its shoulders. The Atlas figure was first unveiled in 1853 and Vancouver’s bears a striking resemblance to the nine-foot high one that is affixed outside the company’s New York flagship.
The store’s renovated interior will feature ample marble and wood, as well as new spaces for fine jewellery and bridal pieces on the ground floor, as well as its first watch salon in Canada, on the store’s second level. Luxurious private shopping areas will also be expanded to facilitate the accommodation of the increasing number of affluent shoppers in the ‘Luxury Zone’.
All last week the chatter surrounding Tiffany’s was the Blue Book 2016 arriving in Vancouver directly after New York.
This is the first time that the Vancouver market has been considered of such stature; Tiffany & Co wished this incredible catalogue to be accessible by the city’s luxury elite. The collection includes many incredible pieces that captures the sea’s ever-changing spectrum with many pieces including a triple-row necklace (top left) of marquise-shaped tanzanites, green tourmalines and aquamarines connected by pavé diamond and platinum links. The multi-million dollar Blue Book collection was first published in 1845, is presented yearly and draws a very unique clientele.
The last piece of news is that Tiffany’s has brought onboard the infamous Grace Coddington as a Creative Partner.
The former Vogue creative director shocked the fashion world ‘leaving’ Vogue after 30 years with a new title ‘director-at-large’. Her first campaign is expected to launch in September and will contain multiple collections and will run through to the holiday season.