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15 Gorgeous Wedding Gowns From the Fall 2022 Haute Couture Shows

15 Gorgeous Wedding Gowns From the Fall 2022 Haute Couture Shows

Something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue. If you’re currently planning your big day, there’s no way you haven’t already started thinking about all the special elements that will make your wedding day look one to remember. If you’re struggling with zeroing on the perfect bridal gown, however, a great place to look for some inspiration is on the runways of this season’s haute couture showcases.
The Fall 2022 shows had Alexis Mabille, Chanel and Dior making a case for pared-down bridal wear via pastel folk-style embroidery, universally flattering cuts (think mermaid silhouettes, high-low summer-ready hems, and sweet A-line pieces), and easy fabrics. While the strapless wedding-ready maxi at Chanel was topped off with a matching stole and ivory bow on the head, Dior’s models styled their romantic ensembles with barely-there makeup and soft low ponytails.
For the bride who’s up for a sartorial experiment, there was no missing Antonio Grimaldi’s sculpted silhouettes, which brought together unconventional necklines, cut-out detailing, and for accessories, jewels that ran from the top of the head down to the chin for that extra dose of drama. The not-so-basic bridal trend also found itself spotlighted on Rome’s Spanish Steps, where Pierpaolo Piccioli sent out a slinky white gown, complete with thigh-high slit, hidden metallic bustier, and black bows at the Valentino show. Over at Giambattista Valli, another conversation-starter piece was a feather-trimmed, semi-sheer bodycon number that enveloped the model’s shoulders in a larger-than-life snowy white bow.
Love it or hate it, there’s no denying the fact that the one bridal trend that never seems to fade away is the more-is-more gown—and Fall 2022’s haute couture shows serve as proof. At Zuhair Murad’s presentation, a sparkling strapless gown doused in stars closed the show, while Rami Al Ali added a little color to the mix with a blush pink sequined number trimmed with pleated ruffles. Elie Saab’s bride walked the runway in a gold gown complete with matching veil and embellished bouquet, Balenciaga presented an equally dramatic bejeweled gown in shades of ivory and silver, and Dolce & Gabbana replaced traditional veils with a headpiece that’s not for the faint-hearted.
Below, scroll through the most interesting wedding gowns from the Fall 2022 haute couture shows.
Elie Saab. Photo: Gorunway.com
Alexis Mabille. Photo: Gorunway.com
Antonio Grimaldi. Photo: Gorunway.com
Balenciaga. Photo: Gorunway.com
Chanel. Photo: Gorunway.com
Dior. Photo: Gorunway.com
Dolce & Gabbana. Photo: Gorunway.com
Elie Saab. Photo: Gorunway.com
Zuhair Murad. Photo: Gorunway.com
Giambattista Valli. Photo: Gorunway.com
Balenciaga. Photo: Gorunway.com
Rami Al Ali. Photo: Gorunway.com
Valentino. Photo: Gorunway.com
Alexis Mabille. Photo: Gorunway.com
Zuhair Murad. Photo: Gorunway.com

Margot Robbie’s Most Stylish Moments Over the Years

Margot Robbie’s Most Stylish Moments Over the Years

Margot Robbie, one of Hollywood’s most stylish and well-known faces, turns 32 on Saturday.Since her breakthrough role as Naomi Lapaglia in the 2013 hit dark comedy “The Wolf of Wall Street,” the Australian actress has starred in some of the biggest movies worldwide and inked high-profile ambassadorships with luxury brands, one of which is Chanel.
Though she’s worked closely with Chanel and its then creative director Karl Lagerfeld for years, she was eventually named a brand ambassador in March 2018. Robbie is reportedly the last ambassador chosen by the legendary German couturier before his death in February 2019.
RELATED: Click through the above gallery to see some of Margot Robbie’s most fashion-forward looks over the years.

Robbie has worn some of the most memorable creations by the French luxury fashion house to events such as the Oscars, the Golden Globes and movie premieres.

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One of the most notable looks was her dress at the 2018 Academy Awards. The white gown, custom-designed by Lagerfeld himself, featured intricate draped off-the-shoulder embroidered detailing with a matching bag and jewelry. She wore her hair in a short bob, which was supposed to align with the ‘90s mood she and her longtime stylist Kate Young were aiming for.

Her press tour outfits for her 2019 movie, “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood,” featured an array of dresses and hairstyles that paid homage to Hollywood fashion icons such as Lauren Hutton and Sharon Tate, the latter of whom Robbie played in the movie.
For events, the actress has also worn the likes of Valentino, Miu Miu, Prada, Versace, Zimmermann and more, working closely with Young for years. The stylist also works with other stars such as Sienna Miller, Selena Gomez and Dakota Johnson.
Throughout her career so far, Robbie has starred in films such as “Whiskey Tango Foxtrot,” “I, Tonya,” “Mary, Queen of Scots,” “Bombshell” and “Birds of Prey,” among others.
She has also produced several successful projects such as the Hulu series “Dollface,” “Promising Young Woman” and Netflix miniseries “Maid.” She has been nominated for numerous accolades, including two Academy Awards and three Golden Globes.
Robbie has been tapped to star in Greta Gerwig’s “Barbie” movie, playing the titular role alongside Ryan Gosling who will play Ken. The movie is scheduled for release in July 2023.
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Lori Harvey Goes Preppy-chic in Chanel to Support Her Skn Brand at Black Beauty Roster Luncheon

Lori Harvey Goes Preppy-chic in Chanel to Support Her Skn Brand at Black Beauty Roster Luncheon

Lori Harvey is celebrating her success as a new entrepreneur.
On June 24, the model attended a luncheon hosted by the Black Beauty Roster, a collective that focuses on highlighting the work of Black beauty creatives in television, film, entertainment and fashion.
For the luncheon, Harvey wore a look by Chanel, which was a baby pink sleeveless knit, an orange mini tweed skirt paired with a small pearl-adorned white bucket bag and white heels by Femme. She styled her hair half-up and half-down to show her pearl drop earrings. She is usually styled by Maeve Reilly, who also works with the likes of Megan Fox.

Lori Harvey during the BBR Hosts Celebration in Black Beauty Excellence at The West Hollywood Edition on June 24 in West Hollywood, Calif.
Getty Images for Black Beauty Roster

The event, held at the Edition in West Hollywood, Calif., was to honor top beauty professionals of color and industry leaders behind the lens, including Harvey’s own skin care brand Skn by LH, which she launched in October.

“Did a thing with @blackbeautyroster,” Harvey wrote in the caption for her Instagram highlighting the event. “I love what you all are contributing to the beauty industry by bringing together black beauty entrepreneurs and celebrating all their hard work and success. Thank you guys so much for having me and highlighting @sknbylh.”

Lori Harvey and Simone and Maude during the BBR Hosts Celebration in Black Beauty Excellence at The West Hollywood Edition on June 24 in West Hollywood, Calif.
Getty Images for Black Beauty Roster

Among other notables who attended or spoke at the event include Chelsea Lazkani of Netflix’s “Selling Sunset,” Lauren Speed-Hamilton of Netflix’s “Love Is Blind,” MSNBC host Symone Sanders, the BBR cofounders Simone Tetteh and Maude Okrah, and other key industry influencers such as Sir John and many more.
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China’s Retail Sales Contract, but Demand for Luxury Is Back

China’s Retail Sales Contract, but Demand for Luxury Is Back

LONDON — China’s strict COVID-19 restrictions, especially with Shanghai under a two-month lockdown, led to a 6.7 percent year-over-year decline in retail sales of consumer goods in May, to 3.35 trillion renminbi, or $496.16 billion, the National Bureau of Statistics revealed on Wednesday.The contraction in May was better than in April, which logged an 11.1 percent dip from the prior year. In the period between January and May, China’s retail sales of consumer goods were 17.17 trillion renminbi, down 1.5 percent from the same period in 2021, when the country enjoyed relatively robust growth while other economies struggled due to COVID-19 outbreaks.
In the past month, the Chinese government has been adjusting its dynamic-zero COVD-19 policy, and announced a broad package of economic support measures to stimulate the economy.

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A Bernstein report published Thursday predicts that the luxury and beauty industry will bounce back quicker than those catering to the mass market in China.
“Early signs indicate that luxury demand is reviving in China, as lockdowns are lifted — with shopping malls in Shanghai reporting sales 80 percent of pre-lockdown levels, albeit with the support of double loyalty points,” the report said.
Chanel, Louis Vuitton, Hermès and Dior were among the first to recover. Local media reported that long lines formed outside their stores in Shanghai’s luxury shopping mall Plaza 66 on the first day they reopened on May 29, after the city came out of the lockdown.

Shoppers wearing face masks line up to visit a Dior store at a shopping mall in Shanghai.
AP

It’s also been reported in the local media that luxury brands in Shanghai were coming up with creative ways to entice high-spending customers during the lockdown, such as sending fancy takeaway meals and putting rare bags worth more than 100,000 renminbi, or $15,000, on delivery platforms.
Despite the promising signs, Berstein noted that logistics disruption has impacted luxury sales well beyond Shanghai. Online and physical supply in major luxury spending cities like Chengdu, Hangzhou and Shenzhen was impacted as most of the luxury brands’ warehouses are located in Shanghai, which has reopened since June, but a negative test within 72 hours is still required for anyone entering public areas.
“Exiting the lockdowns, demand seems back to an even keel and growth trajectory — equally to what we had seen up to Chinese New Year,” Bernstein said, adding that “for affordable luxury, strong pent-up demand will drive continued growth through the remainder of this year.”
Luca Solca, senior research analyst of global luxury goods at Bernstein, added that “contacts within the luxury goods industry and real estate companies point to a rapid demand rebound in China after exiting lockdowns. What remains to be seen is if this demand level will sustain, despite macro-economic indicators being weak.”
An earlier research report from Barclays warned that luxury brands may face additional headwinds in China as pandemic-related restrictions widen to cities like Beijing. The city for the past week went through rounds of mass testing, as hundreds contracted the COVID-19 virus after partying at Heaven Supermarket, a nightclub in downtown’s Sanlitun area, which has been shut permanently following the outbreak.

A survey from Oliver Wyman released this week, which reflects feedback from more than 30 of the consulting firm’s clients across premium consumer and luxury goods, also revealed that luxury brands have slashed expectations for their China business this year. Forecasted 2022 growth for luxury and premium consumer brands in Mainland China was reduced to a mere 3 percent from the 18 percent Oliver Wyman expected months ago.

A worker wearing a face mask assists a man on the health code scanner at a reopening shopping mall in Shanghai.
AP

As for the beauty sector, Bernstein expects that “long-term demand remains intact,” and that demand recovery will come “as soon as restrictions ease, but the path to when this might occur remains unclear.”
The group also said companies with robust China supply chains like L’Oréal and Proya are gaining share during disruptions, while companies with supply chains disrupted by Shanghai lockdowns, including Estée Lauder and Shiseido, may see slow shipment recovery in the second quarter, despite strong online sell-through.
With regard to the broader apparel and sectors, Bernstein suggests there will be a bounceback as restrictions ease, led by e-commerce, as China distribution centers and last-mile delivery are back on track, while in-store recovery will be slower as people remain nervous about going back to stores until mass testing eases.
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Penélope Cruz Goes Back to Black in Chanel for ‘Official Competition’ Premiere at Tribeca Festival

Penélope Cruz Goes Back to Black in Chanel for ‘Official Competition’ Premiere at Tribeca Festival

Penélope Cruz dazzled in Chanel at the 2022 Tribeca Festival.
On Tuesday, the actress wore a black sequin one-sleeve gown by the French luxury fashion house. She styled her long hair down and donned jewelry, including a choker, and bag also by Chanel.
Cruz attended the premiere of her movie “Official Competition,” a Spanish Argentine comedy directed by Gastón Duprat and Mariano Cohn. It also stars Antonio Banderas, who joined the actress on the red carpet, and Oscar Martínez.
The actress has been working closely with Chanel since 1999 and was apparently the first fashion show she attended. In 2018, the brand cemented their close relationship with Cruz when they made her an official ambassador.

Penelope Cruz at the premiere for “Official Competition” during the 2022 Tribeca Festival on Tuesday.
Evan Agostini/Invision/AP

Since then, Cruz has frequently worn creations by the French label to events, including movie premieres, festivals and awards shows.
On Monday, she attended the 15th annual Tribeca Festival Artists Dinner, which was hosted by Chanel. She wore a pink silk jacquard dress by the French luxury fashion house from its fall 2022 ready-to-wear collection, with a bag, jewelry and shoes also by Chanel.
Last week, Chanel also hosted a luncheon at The Odeon to celebrate the festival’s Through Her Lens Program, which honors and supports rising female filmmakers in the industry.
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Penélope Cruz Goes Pretty in Pink at Chanel Tribeca Festival Artists Dinner

Penélope Cruz Goes Pretty in Pink at Chanel Tribeca Festival Artists Dinner

Penélope Cruz not surprisingly looked to Chanel at the 2022 Tribeca Festival Artists Dinner.On Monday, the actress attended the 15th annual dinner at the Tribeca Festival, which was hosted by Chanel. She wore a pink silk jacquard dress by the French luxury fashion house from its fall 2022 ready-to-wear collection, with a bag, jewelry and shoes also by Chanel.
Among those who also attended included Lucy Boynton, Christy Turlington, Evan Mock, Grace Gummer, Lily Allen and Sadie Sink, all of whom also donned the Chanel.
The evening was to honor the artists who contributed original artwork to the annual film festival’s award-winning filmmakers such as Gary Simmons, Deborah Roberts, Nicoletta Darita de la Brown, February James, Ming Smith, Leilah Babirye, Ouattara Watts, Hank Willis Thomas, Nina Chanel Abney and Wardell Milan. This year’s event, which was hosted at the famed restaurant Balthazar in New York City, was curated by Racquel Chevremont.

Penélope Cruz at the Chanel Tribeca Festival Artists Dinner at Balthazar.
Darian DiCianno/BFA.com

Last week, Chanel also hosted a luncheon at The Odeon to celebrate the festival’s Through Her Lens Program, which honors and supports rising female filmmakers in the industry.
Cruz has been an ambassador for the French label since 2018, frequently wearing its creations to movie premieres, awards shows and other high-scale events.
Throughout her decades-long career in Hollywood, the actress has also been heavily involved in the fashion world, modeling for Mango, L’Oréal and Ralph Lauren.
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EXCLUSIVE: Botter, Lukhanyo Mdingi and Peter Do Among Finalists for ANDAM Prize

EXCLUSIVE: Botter, Lukhanyo Mdingi and Peter Do Among Finalists for ANDAM Prize

PARIS — Botter, Lukhanyo Mdingi and Peter Do are among the seven finalists for the grand prize of the 2022 ANDAM Fashion Award, reflecting the international reach of the competition, which aims to draw worldwide talents to set up their business in the French capital.All three are former finalists for the LVMH Prize for Young Designers, with South Africa-based Mdingi, who designs menswear and womenswear, one of the joint winners of the runner-up Karl Lagerfeld Special Jury Prize last year.
Dutch menswear label Botter is designed by Rushemy Botter and Lisi Herrebrugh, who until recently moonlighted as artistic directors of Nina Ricci, while womenswear designer Peter Do, who previously worked at Celine under Phoebe Philo, is based in New York City.

Only one of the contenders for the 300,000 euro main ANDAM award is headquartered in Paris: Thomas Monet’s gender-fluid Cool TM brand. Candidates for ANDAM’s grand prize can be of any nationality, but must own a French company or set one up during the same year as the receipt of the fellowship.

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Rounding out the list of finalists are Berlin-based womenswear label Ottolinger, established by Swiss-born designers Christa Bösch and Cosima Gadient; Copenhagen’s Heliot Emil, which was founded by brothers Victor and Julius Juul in 2016 as a menswear brand and has since expanded to womenswear, and London-based womenswear brand Robert Wun, the subject of a recent exhibition at the Savannah College of Art and Design’s museum in Atlanta.
For the first time this year, ANDAM will also award a runner-up Special Prize, with a cash award of 100,000 euros, to one of the finalists — reflecting the generosity of new and established sponsors and recognizing the strength of the high-caliber talents the awards have been attracting recently.
The three nominees for the Pierre Bergé Prize, which focuses on young French companies and is worth 100,000 euros, are Benjamin Benmoyal, who makes clothes from deadstock fabrics and recycled materials like VHS cassette tapes; Bluemarble Paris, a Paris-based menswear label founded by multicultural designer Anthony Alvarez, and Boyarovskaya, created by designer Maria Boyarovskaya and fashion photographer Artem Kononenko.
Meanwhile, the three contenders for the Accessories Prize, valued at 50,000 euros, are 13 09 SR, the brand cofounded by former Carven designer Serge Ruffieux that launched last year with flat shoes and bejeweled eyewear; London-based Romanian designer Ancuta Sarca, whose creations meld sportswear and high fashion, and Paris-based jewelry designer Dolly Cohen, who has created grills for celebrities including Rihanna.
Nathalie Dufour, ANDAM’s founder and managing director, noted that the prize has always drawn a wealth of international applicants, pointing out that the first winner in 1989 was Belgian designer Martin Margiela.
“I think it also shows that Paris is a capital that continues to attract a lot of talent,” she told WWD in a joint interview with Bruno Pavlovsky, president of Chanel fashion and president of Chanel SAS, who is returning this year for his second stint as mentor of the prize. “Participating in the ANDAM prize opens a lot of doors.”

Dufour noted that the main award comes with several strings attached: In addition to setting up a French subsidiary, brands must commit to showing their collections in Paris, and a portion of the prize money is contingent on employing French manufacturers.
“It’s about promoting the ‘Made in France’ label and connecting companies with these brands, who dream of having access to the kind of high-level know-how that positions them as luxury brands,” she said, adding that the rarefied skills on offer in France also chime with brands’ efforts in favor of sustainable production.
Meanwhile, the finalists based in France will have privileged access to the Institut Français de la Mode fashion school’s accelerator program, and financial advice from the Institute for the Financing of Cinema and the Cultural Industries, which supports cultural industries in France.

Bruno Pavlovsky
Courtesy of Chanel

Pavlovsky said the ANDAM prize, to be awarded at a ceremony on June 30, was key to burnishing the reputation of Paris as the capital of fashion. “Our ambition is really to seek out the best in order to boost the prestige of both the ANDAM award and Paris and that necessarily leads us to be super international,” he said.
“It would be great to have seven French candidates. The reality today is that design is extremely broad, cosmopolitan and international. It’s inspired by all cultures, from all continents, so it’s important that the ANDAM prize reflects that too,” he added.
Both noted that this year’s finalists shared a tendency toward timeless designs, in tune with their generation’s growing demand for ethical and sustainable production.
“There’s a return to a certain classicism and to the idea of wardrobe building. We’re seeing less political commentary, fewer efforts to use clothing as vectors for slogans or ideas. Rather, the focus is on exploring more deeply the primary function of the garment and the quality of the materials. In that sense, I found this quite a mature selection,” Dufour said.
Pavlovsky, who previously mentored ANDAM’s 2015 winner, Stéphane Ashpool of streetwear brand Pigalle Paris, said he would put even more emphasis on environmental concerns this time around.

“These are brands that, if they adopt good habits from the start, can produce sustainably. It’s hard for established brands to change and evolve. As part of my mentorship, I will discuss with the winners how to begin doing this from where they stand currently. I think it’s key for tomorrow’s fashion,” he said.
The prize’s mentoring has also adapted to take into account today’s rapidly evolving digital landscape, with the arrival of Instagram and Mytheresa.com as sponsors, offering this year’s winners the chance to tap into a digital-savvy braintrust to hone their communication and distribution strategies.
Pavlovsky said the mentoring process should allow brands to avoid some of the mistakes made by their more established peers.
“There’s so much happening today in the world of fashion and luxury, so many sectors are seeing disruption, from retail to manufacturing — there are really a lot of areas we can help with, even if it’s just by drawing their attention to potential pitfalls,” he said.
“Today more than ever, our job as mentors is to help them achieve what they want, but also to alert them and to save them time on issues that, unfortunately, we’ve already struggled with in the past,” Pavlovsky added.
Created in 1989 by Dufour with the support of the French Ministry of Culture and the DEFI, a body that promotes the development of the French fashion industry, and with the late Pierre Bergé as president, ANDAM has been a springboard for designers who would go on to achieve international recognition.
Past winners include Viktor & Rolf, Christophe Lemaire, Jeremy Scott and Marine Serre.
ANDAM — the French acronym for National Association of the Development of the Fashion Arts — is also supported by large corporate sponsors, which now include Balenciaga, Chanel, Chloé, Fondation Pierre Bergé-Yves Saint Laurent, Galeries Lafayette, Google, Hermès, Instagram, Kering, Lacoste, Longchamp, LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton, L’Oréal Paris, MyTheresa, OTB, Premiere Classe, Saint Laurent, Swarovski and Tomorrow.
Executives from most of those firms comprise permanent members of the jury.
Many of this year’s guest jury members are drawn from Chanel’s orbit. They include model and music producer Caroline de Maigret; twin sisters Lisa-Kaindé Diaz and Naomi Diaz of musical duo Ibeyi; choreographer Blanca Li; rapper Abd al Malik; model, DJ and singer Soo Joo Park, and Miren Arzalluz, director of the Palais Galliera fashion museum.

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Jennifer Lopez Wore a Little Red Dress With Statement Boots for Date Night

Jennifer Lopez Wore a Little Red Dress With Statement Boots for Date Night

Photo: Getty
Jennifer Lopez has mastered many a dress code, but when it comes to dressing for date night, the pop superstar has it down to a fine art. As a newly-engaged woman who’s deeply in love – every outfit now includes that impressive pale green diamond ring – why wouldn’t she?
Spotted at celebrity favorite restaurant Craig’s in West Hollywood, the 52-year-old singer served up a head-turning look that was as sultry as it was glamorous. The ensemble comprised a bright red figure-hugging wool mini-dress by Saint Laurent, and a striking pair of black over-the-knee high-heeled Christian Louboutin boots. Lopez topped it all off in the chicest way, with a dainty black and white minaudière bag from Chanel’s Métiers d’Art 2018 collection.
For date night, it’s sometimes better to keep things simple. Pair a seductive minidress with towering boots to channel J Lo, throw on a classic shoulder bag and you’re good to go.
Originally published in Vogue.co.uk
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Independent Retailers Detail Dealing With Theft for Better or Worse

Independent Retailers Detail Dealing With Theft for Better or Worse

While a certain amount of theft has always been among retailers’ costs, recent shoplifting and robberies have taken an even greater toll on independent stores.Unlike nationwide retailers that have multiperson loss prevention teams and ample capital to try to thwart thieves, smaller chains or one-unit stores don’t have the same degree of manpower or money to combat the problem. In addition, the theft of tens of thousands of merchandise and the costly preventive measures that are needed in response to such incidents chips away at their bottom lines.
What Comes Around Goes Around’s vice president of retail and client services Julian Guevara said, “I would like to hope it’s temporary but I think it’s more of a cost of doing business. Luxury retailers are constantly being stolen from. I’ve been in luxury retail in New York City for 12 years. This isn’t new. Given the times we’re living in and everything that’s going on socially and economically for so many people, it’s definitely increased. I would hope it goes down but it’s always going to present.”

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Vandalism repairs can result in temporary store closures, as was the case recently for Designer Revival, a consignment shop in New York City. Head of e-commerce Bonnie Jaindl said, “There’s really no such thing as a petty crime for a small business. It hurts our bottom line, especially since we’re trying to recover from the COVID[-19] pandemic and the shutdown.”

Earlier this month Designer Revival was broken into overnight.
Courtesy

A handful of stores in New York City, Seattle, Chicago and Denver spoke with WWD about how they are regrouping, or in one instance closed, due to the ongoing issue of shoplifting and theft. And it’s not just designer products that are being stolen — so are Jordan sneakers and athletic jerseys. Instituting a minimal crime hike fee for all purchases, working with local police detectives and upgrading security systems are some of the methods that stores are using to try to safeguard against the problem.
After five burglaries in the past two years, the sneaker-centric Flee Club in Chicago is planning “a slow relaunch” in another city, said manager Jerry Walker. An overnight robbery earlier this month of Amiri denim, Gallery Dept. and other goods resulted in a loss in the “tens of thousands,” he said.
In response to that, the company has started a #GoFundMe and is nearing its goal of $15,000 for business expenses. The suspects have not been arrested, according to Walker, who attributes the recent crime to the economy. Asked what would improve the situation, he said, “I don’t think it’s going to improve. It’s going to get worse unless people come across money, where they don’t have to take and steal.”
In Manhattan, a group of people stole from Kirna Zabête’s SoHo store on two different Sunday afternoons —attempting to take $40,000 worth of goods on April 3 and $50,000 worth of merchandise on Feb. 6. They entered the store right after its security guard had gone on his break and used wire cutters to take designer handbags, said owner Beth Buccini.
“When they came in the first time, one of my stylists chased after them and they flashed a gun at him. It’s completely brazen in SoHo right now. So there are police officers and undercover cops on every corner,” she said.

In addition to taking on the “exorbitant” cost of an in-store security detail seven days a week, Kirna Zabête has panic buttons to call the local police precinct directly, security cameras and a doorbell that triggers videotaping of visitors, the owner said. Like several other retailers, she said thieves, including those who steal less than $1,000 worth of hoodies, need stiffer consequences.
During the April 3 incident, store employees recognized the robbers from the previous theft two months ago and hit the panic button. While fleeing the store, the accused dropped $40,000 worth of designer merchandise and got into an altercation with the police, resulting in one officer being injured, Buccini said. “It’s obviously very scary and challenging, and the worst I’ve ever seen it. I’ve been in business since 1999 and I have never seen it like this. Nobody has.”
Although Kirna Zabête is talking with area retailers about the problem, improvement is needed for SoHo’s neighborhood watch, she said. The problem has also cropped up in the Hamptons. Recently in the retailer’s East Hampton store, an employee was uneasy about a shopper who was FaceTiming a tour of the store, and the employee “kind of pushed the person out of the store,” Buccini said. “They came back the next day and hit the Balenciaga store and took $90,000 worth of merchandise. But there was a high-speed [police] chase and they caught them.”
Complicating the issue for small business owners is insurance reimbursement for the wholesale price instead of full retail, not to mention insurance premium hikes — 15 percent increases for Kirna Zabête. After the repeat offender thieves were arrested, she asked about the prospect of retrieving any of the stolen merchandise but learned it had already been resold via consignment shops.
”I don’t know what the answer is. But having your team afraid to go to work is no way to live in America in this day and age,” Buccini said.
Despite the challenges caused by theft and the pandemic, the SoHo store’s business is up 30 percent compared to 2021, which was the best year to date, she said. “It’s frustrating that we’re trying to get back, get people back in the stores shopping again and then this is just one more hurdle that we had to deal with,” Buccini said.

Noting how $750,000 worth of merchandise was stolen during June 2020, Buccini recalled thinking at the time that it was a horrible period and an isolated incident. “Since then, it just feels like a regular pattern of people running in, grabbing and taking things. It’s not just high-end stores. It’s every drugstore in New York, too,” she said.
Two weeks ago criminals stole $40,000 worth of vintage handbags from Designer Revival, which is located at 324 East 81st Street in Manhattan. Noting how the stolen goods included handbags from Louis Vuitton, Chanel and Hermès, Jaindl said, “They knew what they were doing. They spent quite some time — almost an hour — jiggering our gates before they broke through. We have alarms. We have video footage of the burglars as they smashed through.”
The New York City Police Department is investigating the recent break-in.
Wearing hoodies, hats and masks, the criminals were not very distinguishable based on the video, which prompted the employees to try to take a closer look at their footwear. After a theft in January, one sales associate instinctively chased the person and grabbed their backpack, which was filled with stolen handbags, but the chief executive officer and others at the store cautioned him to never do that again. “We’re a small store on the Upper East Side. It’s like a family. If someone steals something, it feels so wrong and violating,” Jaindl said.

Designer Revival is located on the Upper East Side of Manhattan.
Courtesy

She said the suspects are believed to be organized criminals, who are targeting independent retailers as well as other small operations, like a bakery. The retailer has insurance, but is still waiting for claims from 2020 to be reimbursed. And filing too many claims runs the risk of being dropped by an insurer, she said.
Locking up more merchandise is one way Designer Revival is dealing with the issue. “We’re not going to let this take us down. We’re still feeling optimistic. You just pick up the pieces — literally — and move on,” Jaindl said.
Last fall, What Comes Around Goes Around had $385,000 worth of designer goods stolen from what was initially a Wooster Street pop-up shop and is now a permanent store. Thieves broke through a wall in the basement to access back inventory, which is now stored in locked cages. It is believed that they had been in the building before, according to Guevara. In response, all visitors to the building must now show identification and sign in. With two stores in New York and one in Beverly Hills, the retailer has also beefed up security and added cameras, among other things.

He said, “We’re a luxury retailer in SoHo. All of the luxury retailers have been targeted in the past year or two. I don’t think it’s anything specific with us. People just want high-end bags. In my opinion, it would be because of the retail price. They are all relatively traceable. We were able to trace them quickly when they tried to resell them.”
The nighttime theft rattled and shocked employees, he said. “A big part of it for the employees was, ‘Well, who was it?’ Did I meet them or know them?’ It was a trust-driven thing where they felt very betrayed,” Guevara said, adding that each employee shared their concerns.
WCAGA has ramped up its security system, added security guards seven days a week at all locations and now keeps doors locked at all times to let people in one by one. That also mitigates COVID-19 risks, he added.
Derek Friedman, who owns 12 Sportsfan and Sock Em’ Sock Emporium stores in Colorado and Texas, said the company has been dealing with break-ins, looting including “people coming in armed with machetes and things,” as well as attempted break-ins and more brazen shoplifting, where employees’ objections are ignored.
In February, the retailer instituted a Denver crime spike fee of 1 percent for every transaction in select stores, where thefts and loss have increased. Although the fee only covers a little of the losses, it sends a message, Friedman said, adding the past four months have resulted in $10,000 to $15,000 of lost merchandise in the most impacted stores, which is slightly less than the same period last year.
Holding shoplifters to a similar standard of those engaging in other unlawful activities such as a violent crime or otherwise is needed, Friedman said. While the victims of retail theft are too often mis-characterized as “just a company,” he said the victims actually are the employees and business owners. “In our case, they [the staff] lost bonuses and pay increases. I went almost two years without taking pay. I was just living on retirement [funds]. It was coming to a crescendo as we were trying to recover from COVID[-19].”
Unlike from 2014 to 2019, when there were normal levels of shoplifting and theft, Friedman said there is “a different kind of shoplifting — armed shoplifting or shoplifting that doesn’t even pretend to acknowledge that this is against the law or that they could suffer some consequence.”

Friedman attributes the behavioral change to the threshold of what is a deemed a misdemeanor versus a violation, as well as whether the accused are being held following their arrests. In 2020, Colorado lawmakers eliminated cash bail for minor offenses.
“There aren’t that many criminals or bad-doers in our society. Most of us do what we’re supposed to do, try to live our lives and do what’s right. But if you keep letting this really small segment of our population that are criminals right back out on the streets, they’re just going to do what criminals do,” he said. “The first thing is to hold people accountable, and to enforce the laws. Put the criminals in jail and give them the opportunity to learn from their mistakes and hopefully come out the other side and find something more productive to do with their lives.”
In February in Seattle, Sneaker City shuttered its Pike Street store after more than 20 years in business. Ongoing incidents of theft and a monthly rent hike to $13,000 from $8,000 for the 1,800-square-foot location factored into that decision, according to Caroline Cho, whose family owns the company. Having faced at least 24 incidents of broken glass windows in the past two years, Cho said she had glass companies on speed dial and that insurance claims weren’t worthwhile because they typically amounted to $50 or $100.
“It’s just too hard to do retail in a city, where if someone steals less than $1,000 worth of merchandise, it doesn’t matter. They’ll get a slap on the wrist. That’s about it,” Cho said.
As an independent store without a loss prevention team, Cho and her employees were “very vigilant” about deterring shoplifters. While only one pair of sneakers was stolen each month, the attempts were multiple times a day. To try to combat that, staffers would only give shoppers one shoe to try on at a time. Knowing that larger companies have trained employees to just let shoplifters go, many thieves think that every business is like that, Cho said. “But I tried to protect my inventory as much as possible.”
When people tried to steal merchandise, Cho would personally confront them. “I would scream and yell.  One of them tried to threaten me. I didn’t take that lightly so I said, ‘Try me,” she said.

Asked if she was concerned for her safety, Cho said, ‘No, I’m concerned for theirs. If they want to come after me, there will be a fight. Most times they do that — it’s just words.”
She also claimed that some retailers or officials will overlook thefts of under $1,000 on the premise that those goods were stolen by the impoverished to pay for money to get food. Or such incidents might result in a fine from the police that the thieves can’t afford to pay. Cho added that there are a lot of mentally unwell people in Seattle in need of professional help.
Asked how other independent stores might deal with theft, Cho advised that the more they engage with customers, the less theft there will be during store hours. “More importantly, find a way to take care of the stress and your mental health from it because it’s very taxing.”
While Seattle officials have been vocal about how the city is being cleaned up and is returning to the way it was, Cho said they are trying. “But this issue is going to take longer to fix than it took to get to this point. Part of the reason they’re doing this is because we need the tourist money that we don’t have for a lot of reasons. At first, it was because of the pandemic but now crime has gotten worse during the pandemic. People who are coming to visit should just stay vigilant when you are here. It’s the not the way it used to be before the pandemic, even though the city says it is.”

Chanel Opens Boutique at The Shops at Crystals in Las Vegas

Chanel Opens Boutique at The Shops at Crystals in Las Vegas

Chanel is ready to unveil its newest boutique at The Shops at Crystals in Las Vegas. The 7,500-square-foot store, which opens Thursday, will showcase the house’s ready-to-wear, handbags, shoes, costume jewelry and accessories, as well as watches and fine jewelry.Designed by New York-based architect Peter Marino, the boutique features a new design. The store took about 18 months to build from start to finish.
Chanel joins such international luxury brands as Dior, Louis Vuitton, Bottega Veneta, Hermès, Cartier, Gucci, Fendi, Tom Ford, and Tiffany & Co. at The Shops at Crystals.
At present, Chanel has 24 stand-alone boutiques and about 40 full-line department store locations in the U.S., according to Joyce Green, general manager of Chanel. With the latest boutique, the brand has three locations in Las Vegas — at the Wynn Las Vegas (newly expanded) and the Bellagio. In February, Chanel closed its store in the Encore, which is a separate Vegas hotel, but connected to the Wynn. 

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Chanel opens a 7,500-square-foot boutique at The Shops at Crystals in Las Vegas.
Sam Frost

“We keep our distribution in terms of number of locations the same, but we wanted to have more differentiation of location,” said Green, noting that the Crystals store will cater more to a local customer than the stores at Wynn and Bellagio, which are in hotels with casinos.
Marino’s design is an ode to the neon-lit luxury and flamboyance that Vegas is known for, while remaining in step with the  ethos of the house. The single-floor boutique features a double-height black-and-white stone facade outside, while the interior has references to Gabrielle Chanel’s iconic Paris atelier, including custom woven fabric and plaster wall coverings. In the shoe salon, two Goossens custom rock crystal and bronze chandeliers glitter overhead. In the rtw salon, a pair of Louis XV Fauteuil armchairs sit alongside a custom mirrored screen. Throughout the store, gold accents reflect Vegas’ famed glamour. 

Accessories displayed at Chanel.
Sam Frost

The boutique houses the spring 2022 collection, designed by Chanel artistic director Virginie Viard. The collection draws inspiration from Karl Lagerfeld’s photography and the glamour of the house’s favorite supermodels who fell under his lens. There are bright miniskirt and mini-short summery suiting in tweed and crochet, flowing chiffon dresses printed with butterfly wings, and sheer swim cover-ups worn over simple maillots, tied with a bow at the waist. Handbags feature quilted leather, with metal chain interfaced with leather and adorned with the “Chanel” signature composed of gold or lacquered metals letters. Costume jewelry inspired by dangling pink No.5 dice are a wink to lucky Vegas customers.

A view of the new Chanel store.
Sam Frost

Asked who Chanel is targeting with the new Crystals store, Green said: “It’s a combination, but the local population in the last two years has grown tremendously. We’re also seeing more American local tourists coming to Vegas and of course, when international travel becomes more of what it was pre-COVID[-19], we will welcome back many more international tourists as well.”
While many of her competitors are already at the Crystals, Green said they took their time to find the right location. “For us we don’t need to be first. We just need to look the best. We take our time in making distribution decisions,” said Green. 

A ready-to-wear display at Chanel.
Sam Frost

Chanel took over space formerly occupied by Versace.
Upon entering the store, there’s a mixed visual merchandising area, where all the product categories are represented. A focal point is an enlarged shoe salon, which is something the brand is doing in more boutiques to improve their presence and to create a warm environment for shoes. That leads into rtw with two salons, with the ability to close off the area for private appointments. Accessories, handbags, leather goods, textiles, belts and costume jewelry round out the assortment.
Green said Chanel has a good mix of street-front locations, such as New York, Beverly Hills, San Francisco and Miami, as well as mall locations. Marino is building and designing a boutique in Beverly Hills that will open next year, an expanded footprint on the existing location.

Chanel at The Shops at Crystals in Las Vegas.
Sam Frost

Green believes that the Crystals mall store, with its local clientele, will perform differently than those at the Vegas hotels. “The Wynn and Bellagio are more within the hotels and casinos, and Crystal is a bit more separate and you can park more like you’re going to just shop,” she said. In Vegas, all of the company’s locations are on a single floor. “It’s a nice way for a client who comes in to see all categories at once through the different entryways.”
Chanel has high expectations for the overall store, and specifically rtw and footwear.

Footwear is featured at the new Chanel store in Las Vegas.
Sam Frost

“We are growing in ready-to-wear and shoes, and those categories will have a very nice presence as well as watches/fine jewelry. All categories are strong, and I think we’ll have a different assortment, we call it one boutique, one story. Each boutique has a little different flavor of product, color, style and silhouette, and each location will have some uniqueness,” said Green.
While she declined to divulge sales projections, she said: “Vegas is already in high double digits in increases, and we expect to do more volume than we did in Encore. The Vegas market is contributing to strong double-digit growth for us.”
In fact, she called the Vegas market “on fire and [it] is exceeding expectations.”

A view of the new Chanel store.
Sam Frost

 Chanel plans an opening for Thursday and events throughout the fall season to engage local clients. “There will be events in Vegas that will be outside the boutique in a special location geared to their local clients,” she said.

Despite a worker shortage in the U.S., staffing the Vegas store hasn’t been difficult. Green said they’ve had mobility among their teams and have 22 staff members who speak 13 languages. “It’s very international and very diverse, and people who have joined our team also came from Encore. We also increased and added more staff, and have a multilanguage, multiculture team crossing all roles.”
She pointed out that the sales staff is not on commission. “We have a team structure compensation program that creates an environment of teamwork and client service. Our service is the driver, more than sales,” she said. The Chanel store will be open seven days.

Handbags and accessories on display.
Sam Frost

“My expectations are more around service and experience than they are about sales to be very honest. I have every faith that it will exceed our sales projection. What I want is that the environment creates an inviting space and that we attract new clients and we also develop deeper relationships with local clients. And we showcase Chanel in a new way in an important market,” said Green.

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Viva Las Vegas: Chanel Rebuilds at The Wynn
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