“For our girls, security is the brand new luxurious.”
So stated Deirdre Quinn, cofounder and chief government officer of Lafayette 148 New York, which is launching a brand new division referred to as AtelierDirect. The corporate has enlisted a bunch of stylists and model ambassadors in 25 markets across the nation to supply a brand new, personal promoting and styling service to shoppers wanting a extra curated, intimate purchasing expertise.
“The world has modified dramatically during the last three months, and we’re working to observe the wants of our prospects,” stated Quinn. The service is supposed to enrich, slightly than compete with, Lafayette 148’s different channels, she stated. “The actual fact is, for the foreseeable future, our shoppers have advised us that they’re not comfy purchasing within the conventional methods. We need to be there for her — whether or not or not it’s department shops, specialty shops, our personal L148 shops, the net, catalogue and even at dwelling.”
Lafayette 148, which was based in 1996, sells on-line at lafayette148ny.com, in 28 freestanding boutiques within the U.S. and China, Tmall, WeChat, in addition to in specialty shops and luxurious department shops all through the world.
Paul Lechlinksi, vp of direct to client gross sales, added, “Not solely did COVID-19 present us that you would be able to work from anyplace, however you possibly can service shoppers from anyplace. You don’t essentially need to have a conventional retail house to work together with your prospects. AtelierDirect grew naturally out of a observe that our retailer groups have already used for years — now we’re increasing it to service extra girls past our present brick-and-mortar attain.”
Bringing a extremely customized method, “AD Stylists” will work with shoppers one-on-one, pulling an edit of items primarily based on their measurement, life-style and preferences. A shared providers workforce on the firm’s headquarters will assist the AD stylist community to make sure the model expertise aligns.
“That is an extension of our model, not an impartial enterprise,” emphasised Lechlinski. “We’ve handpicked stylists who embody our values, enterprise ethos, and philosophy. Wherever our shoppers are purchasing, it ought to all the time really feel like one voice, one look, and one imaginative and prescient of Lafayette 148.”
Quinn added that AtelierDirect doesn’t observe the mould of current direct retail companies. “That is a wholly new mannequin,” she stated. “Nothing like this exists out there right now. The ladies we’ve introduced on are all tastemakers — type arbiters with wardrobing and promoting expertise. Consider them as a nationwide group of impartial trend entrepreneurs — they’ve extraordinary networks and deep connections with the type of trendy, achieved girls that we costume.”
She stated she discovered these girls by means of a former worker who used to work for the corporate within the Eighties, and had established a community of stylists by means of one other job.
The 25 markets the place the service will launch embody Chicago, Boston, Nashville and Naples. The corporate plans a “fall season pilot launch” in September to coincide with its re-branding and fall 2020 assortment debut in August. This system will likely be constructed to scale for spring 2021 primarily based on the autumn 2020 learnings.
“At the moment when the pandemic has challenged our sense of management, having extra selections is empowering,” stated Quinn. “The Lafayette 148 mission is to assist girls really feel their energy to allow them to construct their worlds. AtelierDirect offers them one other efficient choice for purchasing and interesting with our model.”
Quinn stated the shopper can both meet the stylist in Lafayette 148’s idea retailer, or make an appointment for the stylist to go to their dwelling or workplace. She stated the stylist can have a variety to indicate precise samples and also will present kinds by means of the catalogue and site.
“Being able to fabricate on demand is the energy of the corporate,” stated Quinn. The model has its personal manufacturing facility in China.
Requested how her retail accounts may really feel about this new division, Quinn stated, “They weren’t glad once I dropped catalogue and beginning promoting on-line 12 years in the past. In case your product sells, we work it out. That is simply one other division of what we do. It doesn’t make something much less vital. On this time of change, it’s vital to strive new issues.”
Meantime, Quinn stated 5 of her freestanding shops opened Tuesday — in Manhasset, N.Y., South Coast Plaza, Tysons Nook, Va., and Miami and one outlet in Woodbury Frequent. “Each single retailer did enterprise,” she stated.