Colette, Kawakubo Set Retail Partnership

Discussion in 'Designers and Collections' started by Atelier, Apr 21, 2004.

  1. Atelier

    Atelier Hoppity Hop

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    Neat! :)

     
  2. purplelucrezia

    purplelucrezia New Member

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    Now where have I heard of those before... :innocent:
     
  3. ignitioned32

    ignitioned32 Mannikin

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    :cry: I can't wait. :heart:

    Thanks Atelier. :flower:
     
  4. nqth

    nqth arndom

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    Thanks Atelier:)
    Comme rulez:)
     
  5. Lena

    Lena etre soi-meme

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    another very clever move from the CDG team :flower:

    ( loved the Peggy Moffat CDG t-shirts excusively sold at Colette)

    thanks for the topic atelier :heart:
     
  6. Johnny

    Johnny New Member

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    It's intertesting, all of this new activity by comme, but I can't help wondering whether it's a little cynical. There is a definate trend towards collaboration, super cool store concepts, extreme exclusivity etc, which I think is a very concious attempt to make the brand more "relevant". Nothing wrong with that I suppose, but I'm just not sure that the desgin quality in some of these things will necessarily be so high. You think of a PradaxUndercoverxcomme t-shirt and you think "i want to get that" without really knowing what it will look like (although you might be able to guess to an extent). It's pure brand lust, it's just that the brands in question are a little more " high brow" than those usually associated with that phenomenon (say, Burberry in the UK). Comme are doing it already with the JunyaxLevis/ShirtxFred Perry things, and also some Undercover t-shirst (which are just t-shits with various comme and UC logos overprinted onto one another). I have a pair of black junya jeans, and even as a fan I'm hard puched to see why they cost almost than five times as much as normal levis. Exclusvitiy is also something I'm suspicious of. I'm bot sure it adds much to know that you've got on one of only five t-shirts made, or something that only sells in Japan stores. Where I'm from no one else wears any decent clothes so if a I wear any comme it's exclusive! The recent sale of London Dunks at Hideout had people queing all night to get a pair of trainers that sold for £60, but were on ebay the next day at $1500! I suppose the point is that it's real hype generating stuff, and it shouldn't prevent us from analysing the product on its merits.
     
  7. Lena

    Lena etre soi-meme

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    great post johnny , so ...

    i dont find anything wrong in overprinted logos, conceptual is fun and less pretending, makes people more creative.. i mean its just a t-shirt its not like one is buying Haute Couture right?

    exclusive IS more expensive because it costs more to make.
    small editions worth all their money because they disappear from the market
    before having any chance to get coppied.
    example:
    an order for 1000 t-shirts by colour is much more expensive than an order of 5000 t-shirts by colour , close to 50+ up in manufacturing cost etc etc.
     
  8. nqth

    nqth arndom

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    I think it is more a business move than innovative design. They just do unique "collaboration designs" to give sth fresh and desireable (sellable:) for customers. It is, as you said, to make the brand more "relevant" to other customers, but in a nice way :) I prefer the collaboration ideas in business to heavy-sexy ads.

    Johnny, I was also wondering what are the Levis/Junya jeans about. Did they make also plain Levis jeans with Junya's tags? I found the prints nice and sweet :) as well as some typical Comme tricks made the jeans look fresh, too. It was his first ever collection, so one has to have them :)
     
  9. Johnny

    Johnny New Member

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    Lena, appreciate what you say(although not sure if you were being sarcastic when you said great post!). It's not so much the economics of it that bothers me (I still buy it), just the "design validity" of it. The mainline collections aren't based on "gimmicks" - they have worth intrinsically because of the fabric, the construction, the inherent design features (as opposed to bespoke labels based on collaborative short-runs). I read recently an old article containing an interview with Jun Takahashi where he said (sort of referreing to Nigo at Bape) that he wouldn't see himself just doing tees with "Undercover" on them, but he has done that since. Presumably because it's easy and it sells. It just seems to me that there's a whole culture of exclusivity, rare products etc which sell, and are marketed, just on the basis that they are exclusive and rare. Comme is never going to be democratic because of it's always high prices and esoteric (relatively) aesthetic, but it doesn't need to compound this with up front label snobbery.

    Having said all of that, I'm maybe being a bit too serious, and you're right about the "fun" aspect of it. It isn't haute couture
     
  10. Lena

    Lena etre soi-meme

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    i'm certainly not the sarcastic kind Johnny ;)

    design is not excluded from a conceptual collaboration,
    maybe this Undercover 'edition' was unfortnate,
    its not a matter of label clashing, it is how this is done.

    i take conceptual attitude as a design concept by itself
    and i'm very interested on your posts ,
    since i'm working on a 'conceptual' project myself.

    are you against rare and exclusive products?
    its nothing i love more myself..
    i find this the best reaction to mass marketing, mass copying
    and uniformity in styles, hence i support CDG for their new
    design/marketing direction.

    regarding CDG prices, i've found the collaboration ones (fred perry shoes)
    very reasonably priced, cheaper than other trainers including
    mainstream athletic brands.
    CDG has a huge pricing range, from very reasonable (t-shirts, accessories)
    to very pricy, according to lines and products
     
  11. Johnny

    Johnny New Member

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    Ngth

    I didn't get the jeans from the first collection - I agree with your views on those - I liked them, especially the "oversized and re-cut" ones. I liked the prints graphically, but found the content a little too twee in some cases. It's partly my coyness about such things - again, where I'm from, people would be much less interested in the typeface used than the strange non-rhyming poems! The ones I have are from the last winter's collection. They are plain black bruched cotton, with heavy white stitching on seams. I do like them - nice shape, quite baggy without being overly so - but as I said the price was high. I also have a pair of JunyaxNike waffle racers. They are nice again, but are made in a Nike factory in China. The quality of the product can therefore not be higher than a Nike shoe, but it's three times the price. I know that part of the reason I like them is just because of the "concept" that comme has collabotated with Nike on a product.

    Lena

    There is concept in collaboration to a point, I agree. And I'm not against rare and exclusive products as such. It's just that the concept of rare and exclusive is, ironically, becoming very common. I don't think it's enough on its own - it has some value but the product has to intrisically have value as well. It's interesting how the FP collabotation has been marketed in the UK press. In almost every article, they got it wrong, in terms of describing the product - in most cases, they exaggerated the extent of the comme tweaking. I do think that some of the polo shits are nice, and I think part of the reason it works is that the collab between comme and FP is a good "concept" itself (because it's quite unexpected, but there is a shared aesthetic, since a lot of comme designes are fundamentally "classic", like the polo shirt or the t-shirt, both of which form the basis of a lot of designs throughout a lot of the comme lines) but they could have done more.

    All I'm saying is that they need to concentrate on the product as well as the concept, and in particular the quality needs to be high at all times. That is one of the main reasons I buy comme - no matter how strange or deconstructed the garment, it is always extremely high quality. I hope they retain this.
     
  12. Lena

    Lena etre soi-meme

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    agree ;)
     
  13. nqth

    nqth arndom

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    agree ;) [/b][/quote]
    Absolutely :)
     
  14. nqth

    nqth arndom

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    Johnny, I think you have raised an important :) question that I also have in mind recently, which is if Comme is going to be too "hyped" and taking a different, more marketing-oriented route, and if they will still manage their innovative designs.

    If looking at the shows, I think those are great. But shops sell not only the show pieces. There are also more shops :) as they are "reaching" custumers now directly, and there is def. a new retail/business strategy at Comme.

    So what do You think about it all ? :)
     
  15. helena

    helena Swim Upstream

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    I am really interested to read all the comments about CDG and the concept store/collaboration chat that has been going on. I think Johnny's views are very cynical but naive (sorry Johnny) - the bottom line is that these organisations are, at the end of the day, commercial ones, providing a product to sell that people are willing to pay for and in some cases pay a lot of money for. I think that within those parameters CDG has retained its integrity in both its design and philosophy. One only has to look at the Autumn winter collection to see that. However, I digress. I think the point is that CDG need to adapt to an ever changing market where trends and percetions of labels change with the ficklness of the wind. Everyone is searching for something new & CDG must beleive that their collaborations can preserve their design concepts and fiercely high quality as well as moving with the commercial challenges that face them.

    On the subject of exclusivity, people are always going to pay for rarity as well as quality. I don't really see it something thats right or wrong - merely something that is a truism. Either pay more for it or choose not to. Its a question of choice & supply & demand.

    I am looking foward to the new London CDG store opening. I know you will be too Johnny. enjoy! :heart:
     
  16. nqth

    nqth arndom

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    I think Comme is reaching for new customers. That's the point. Is that you, Johnny, who wrote about it a while ago?

    Comme's customers want design:) And now what Comme is doing is "concept" and "playfulness", opening new funky stores and making exclusive, limited edition "products" from collaborations. The "tone" is different, isn't it. And so are the new products. Yes, this is just a part of the story, there are still the main lines. And I like the way they are expanding their business, but how far will it affect the Comme des Garcons "spirit" in design:)?

    Not that I am an addicted client (but the addicted fan and worrying about Comme's ability of being avant-gard:)

    Just my two cents, hope it was not blahing about nothing:)
     
  17. faust

    faust New Member

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    My ramblings:

    I agree with Johnny about CDG FP project and its press coverage, two different animals. i-D made it sounds like something so quirky - but what I saw in stores was anything but (of course, they buyers may be at fault). But, these shirts are not expensive. I understand you raising brow about quality/price - I personally never got Jil Sander Pumas that cost 3 times as much and are no different than regular Pumas.

    However, I think Junya/Levis is a different animal - the fabric is very different, and plenty of styles are unique, and they are made in Japan - I think that the colloboration here was very minimal and rested on the "classics, basics" mantra that Junya touts for his collections (love those tags, btw). All of this makes the item more expensive. I am still regretting not getting a pair of jeans from his second collection, with the purple gothic "M" stitched out on the front leg - but you are right, I would NEVER pay $350 for a pair of JEANS.

    All in all, I think this project is pretty cool. I'd like to visit the store. And, even if it's just a marketing ploy - it's better than over-advertising, like someone else mentioned here. Think about this, advertising is factored into a cost of each garment, SO, how much quality do you get from a Gucci/Prada piece as opposed to a CDG one with the same price, and how much are YOU paying for advertising?
     
  18. Johnny

    Johnny New Member

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    Faust, those M jeans were nice, I regret not getting them too (there were loads in Selfridges all that season). The black ones I got were UK Sterling 320! (although I got them half price). And you're dead right about advertising budgets. I was thinking about this recently when I got a Prada cardigan (I like it!) - how much is for the cardigan (which I bought from a provincial store) and how much is for the advertising and the huge Japan store (and it's architect). It's one of the reasons I don't mind paying for comme - I genuinely think it's relatively good value.

    However, I just worry about comme spreading itself a bit thinly, both in terms of stores (and therefore number of items produced - there musy be much more to stock out the guerilla stores) and number of lines. I know they have always had a fair number of these, but they have always been fairly "internal" and thus, I suspect, quite controlled. You can't blame a business for trying to make money, I just hope the "heart" of the company stays the same. They've already diversified the comme 2 perfume range by going for major commercial distribution, they are clearly trying to get more money in the door. I wonder what the finances are like - if they're bank funded to any great extent, whether the banks are putting pressure on to essentially make more profit. The Shirt range was probably their biggest step towards more mainstream looks, and more profit due to European manufacturing, but it's still OK (although I don't tend to buy it because the quality is not so good).

    One side benefit may be that the mainlines become more and more creative (cross funded by the undercover collabs). The womanswear for winter 2004 is pretty uncommercial but very beautiful, and the menswear seems (from the little I've seen) to be very very good.

    Who knows? I still like it all, and would snap up a JunyaxUndercoverxRafxCollete tee shirt in a second!
     
  19. softgrey

    softgrey flaunt the imperfection

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    i think that's the idea... :flower:

    in case anyone missed it...business is bad for the fashion industry...i think they are very clever to explore collaborations and alternative venues...everyone will be following their examples...

    i'm only sorry i won't be in japan to check out the space.... :flower:
     
  20. Lena

    Lena etre soi-meme

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    i think that's the idea... :flower:

    in case anyone missed it...business is bad for the fashion industry...i think they are very clever to explore collaborations and alternative venues...everyone will be following their examples...

    i'm only sorry i won't be in japan to check out the space.... :flower: [/b][/quote]
    i absolutely agree with both comments ;)

    mainstream (big fashion groups) are absolutely sniffing the air
    and getting closer to 'creative alternatives'.
    it's good for business and its good for the customer.

    collaborations break design-ego stereotypes,
    edition pieces have a special 'intimate' feeling
    of owing one of the 'few out there'.
    it's a special and attractive concept for the end client.

    :heart:
     

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