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August 31 2014

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3 posts tagged "Dave Gilboa"

Warby Parker: To See and Be Seen in Soho

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Web sites come and Web sites go, but digital wunderkind Warby Parker, which built a company on selling glasses online, has laid a cornerstone of the most permanent kind. “After the nuclear war, this’ll still be here,” cofounder Neil Blumenthal laughed last night, touching his toe to the terrazzo floor, inlaid with a silver WARBY PARKER logo, at the brand’s new Soho flagship. The new shop is not technically the first Warby store—that distinction goes to the Meatpacking District space that was meant as a pop-up but, thanks to rampant interest, will now be sticking around—but the 2,000-square-foot Greene Street store is its most ambitious effort. (The location also puts it in good company. As fashion brands have flocked back to Soho, Greene Street in particular has become a central strip: Chloé, Tiffany & Co., Vanessa Bruno, Dior Homme, and Stella McCartney have opened their doors here in the past year, and a major American fashion label is said to have just signed the lease for its second store next door.)

Terrazzo floors notwithstanding—they’re a reference to the floors of New York’s august civic buildings—the new shop, designed in collaboration with Andy Spade and Anthony Sperduti of Partners & Spade, mimics a library, with custom eighteen-foot bookcases, rolling library ladders, and a selection of books from fourteen different indie publishers, which are available for sale. “There’s obviously a link between vision and learning,” Blumenthal said, and reading has been closest to the brand’s heart from the start: The Warby Parker name comes from the names of two characters in an unpublished Jack Kerouac manuscript Blumenthal and his cofounder, Dave Gilboa, found at the New York Public Library. (The NYPL itself is a major inspiration for the new space, as well as being the site of WP’s first fashion week presentation, back in 2011.) Blumenthal and Gilboa will continue to sell online, where, they note, the selection is, in fact, even greater than the store’s. But a stone-and-steel location has certain advantages over the Web. Key among them is the full-time on-site optometrist. If there’s a wait for the good doctor’s time, have a look around—your name will eventually flip onto the train-station-style schedule board.

Warby Parker opens this Saturday at 121 Greene Street, NYC; www.warbyparker.com.

Photo: Collin Hughes

Waiting For The Warby Bus

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There’s always an educational element running through Warby Parker’s DNA. The do-good eyewear brand did its first fashion week presentation (in September 2011) in the New York Public Library, and this summer, the label named after Jack Kerouac characters set up a Warby Parker Readery at the Standard, Downtown L.A. Now, founders Dave Gilboa and Neil Blumenthal have organized a cross-country Warby class trip. The brand’s first metal collection, the new Pencils of Promise collaboration, its Fall offerings, and a few of the originals have all been loaded onto the Warby pop-up shop bus for the grand tour, which kicks off in New York at Bryant Park tomorrow. The goods, with prices starting at $95 and topping off at $195 for Titanium prescription sunwear, will be on sale at the New York stops (Bryant Park, Soho, and the Meatpacking District) before the bus takes off for Boston, Washington, D.C., Philadelphia, Nashville, Atlanta, Dallas, and finally, Los Angeles. Here, Style.com has an exclusive first look at the Warby shop. Don’t miss this bus!
Continue Reading “Waiting For The Warby Bus” »

Fit To A Tee

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There is something to be said for a good ole-fashioned T-shirt—finding one with the perfect fit is rarely as easy as it should be. On that simple notion, a few T-shirt-loving guys in California, including Ashton Kutcher, Ryan Donahue, and Matt Rowe, set out to create a line, called Pickwick & Weller, of timeless knitwear staples for men and women.

“I was working as a graphic designer in San Francisco for ten or 15 years, and I started to notice this trend in the last five years where all of my friends (all in creative fields) were wearing refined T-shirts and perfect denim as their work uniform,” Donahue tells Style.com of the project, which kicked off in early 2012. “I decided to play with this idea of ‘modern workwear,’ and Ashton, who I met through a friend, really resonated with that idea—he is a casual guy who is known for wearing that look.”

With a little help from their fashion insider friends, including Steven Alan (“he’s one of my go-to people in NYC—he’s an adviser to us”) and Warby Parker co-founder Dave Gilboa (who is an investor/adviser for the brand), they got to work building their online-only label of luxury basics (just launched this week at www.pickwickweller.com), named after the classic Charles Dickens novel The Pickwick Papers. At no cost, they will ship you the items you want to try in various size, color, and style options (they have three women’s cuts and two men’s at the moment), and you have five days to decide what you like and don’t like. “We feel like we are offering a modern workwear brand of high-end basics, on the level of Alexander Wang and Theory, but at a J.Crew price point (prices start at around $45 and top off at around $60).” Here, Style.com has a first look at the goods. Ashton’s favorite? The Henley, a.k.a. the Afred (pictured), of course.

Photo: Courtesy of Pickwick & Weller