August 29 2014

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50 posts tagged "Reed Krakoff"

Learning To Reed


When Coach CEO Lewis Frankfort made the controversial decision to hire Reed Krakoff (pictured) as the company’s executive creative director in 1996, the board told him, “It’s your funeral you’re planning if you hire that kid.” Just over 15 years later, Krakoff has risen to the role of president (while retaining his original title as well) and is credited with steering the company from a $500 million American powerhouse to a $5 billion global brand. “The funny thing is that no one ever asked me if I’d designed a bag before,” said Krakoff Wednesday night at New York’s French Institute/Alliance Française, where he delivered the first of this season’s Fashion Talks series. (Next up at FIAF: Stefano Pilati and Dries Van Noten.)

After he was introduced by Elle editor in chief Robbie Myers, Krakoff described both his work at Coach and at the namesake designer label he created in 2010. The distinction he drew was between working with just a handful of designers at Reed Krakoff versus working as Coach’s “design architect” overseeing a team of hundreds (though he assured the audience that he personally approves every piece). “It’s very much like finding the code, or an algorithm for success,” he said of designing for Coach. “It’s based on balancing what came before to understand what must come next. It’s really a giant puzzle.” As for designing his own label, he admitted that he sometimes has to edit himself. “You need to be able to do what the business needs but keep it in line with what people will like. You can’t always just do what’s best for the creative good,” he said.

Photo: Courtesy Photo

Halle Berry X Deichmann, Reed Krakoff Opens Pop-Up Shop At Printemps, Alexis Bittar Taps Ab Fab Stars, And More…


Halle Berry is collaborating on a line with the German shoe retailer Deichmann. Her Fifth Avenue by Halle Berry collection of sandals and wedges hits stores in March. [Vogue U.K.]

Reed Krakoff has just unveiled his Printemps pop-up shop on the retailer’s main floor. His 300-square-foot space, with brands like Prada nearby, shows off his leather goods. [WWD]

Alexis Bittar recruited Absolutely Fabulous icons Patsy and Edina for his Fall 2012 ad campaign. “From the first episode, I inherited the word ‘sweetie’ for about five years. It got to the point where it became nauseating—I was forced to stop,” Bittar says of his obsession with the show. [Telegraph]

Next month, Miguel Androver will be back on the New York fashion scene sharing his environmentally friendly design principles at various fashion week events. His namesake line (which includes his capsule collection for eco-friendly line Hessnatur) is being shown February 11, followed by a limited-edition collection for Savage Senses February 12, and he’s unveiling a line of organic T-shirts at downtown boutique Casa di Moda. [WWD]

Photo: John Swannell for Alexis Bittar

The Bag Of The Season—If You Can Get To It In Time


Cocktail parties are a dime a dozen this time of year. The limited-edition Standard clutch that was the cause célèbre at Reed Krakoff’s Madison Avenue get-together is decidedly not. In fact, only 15 of the envelope-style clutches have been made in exotic ayer skin (that’s watersnake, to you and me), in a range of colors from racing green to denim blue to metallic copper. That makes it just about the most exclusive item you could put on your holiday wish list this year. But may we suggest that your Secret Santa acts fast? Last night’s Vanessa Traina-hosted soirée, which was followed by a small dinner at Indochine, attracted a quartet of editors in chief, along with plenty of top stylists and bloggers. And you know how the fashion set likes its arm candy. (Santa, if you’re reading this, I’ll take mine in matte white.) The hand-numbered clutches are available exclusively at Krakoff’s Madison Avenue boutique.

Photo: Will Ragozzino/

A Decor Diva Perfects The Imperfect


“Perfect is boring,” Deborah Needleman told last night at the launch party for her new book The Perfectly Imperfect Home: How to Decorate and Live Well. “When I looked at all the houses I loved, they were all extremely personal, sometimes even chaotic and messy, but that’s what I found interesting and chic.” The fête, which drew decorators and designers including Reed Krakoff, Muriel Brandolini, and Nina Griscom, was held at the CH Carolina Herrera boutique, where the designer toasted the WSJ. magazine editor’s second tome—a manifesto of styling tips and how-tos on lived-in chic—a look which the author all but trademarked during her years as founding editor of ultra-hip glossy Domino.

“Decorating needs to have a little glamour but there also needs to be a little bit of ugly and quirk,” said Needleman. “It can’t be matchy-matchy—just like in fashion.” Pointing to her Nicholas Kirkwood platforms, she added, “I wore these because they’re comfortable. We suffer, but too much.” The book is chock-full of Needleman-isms, including terms like “jollifiers” and “cozification,” illustrated by Virginia Johnson’s whimsical watercolors. (Case in point? Outfitting your nest in “neutral” stripes and leopard or adding animal figurines because “they make people happy.”)

Meanwhile, hostess Carolina Herrera, fresh from unveiling her pre-fall collection, was wary to reveal her own decor philosophy. “My husband and I don’t buy things, we inherit them,” demurred Mrs. Herrera, who cited an 18th-century heirloom chair in her “framboise-hued” sitting room as a favorite piece. “It’s important to have a mixture of eras but I prefer simplicity. No excess and nothing fussy.” A golden rule? “Don’t hire a decorator. If you’re going to have a house, do it yourself.”

Photo: Alexander Porter /

Reed Krakoff Visits Paris, Hopes To Stay


Reed Krakoff and his French wife Delphine love Paris. “I visit as often as I can,” he says. “I travel for inspiration because it’s my job, but even if I wasn’t working, I’d still be traveling.” He mentioned wanting to open a permanent Paris store one day. In the meantime, the designer (left, with Virginie Mouzat) and his brand’s new president, Valérie Hermann, created a showroom on three levels of the Galerie Karsten Greve in the Marais to introduce Parisians to his new collection. “I’ve kind of done everything in reverse,” Krakoff muses. “After 25 years designing for others, I really wanted to do my own thing and use all my experience to do it well.” Among those there to take it in: Sarah Lerfel, who buys Krakoff for Colette; Olympia Le-Tan and her illustrator papa Pierre Le-Tan, who has done projects for Krakoff at Coach; jewelry designer Harumi Klossowski, Balthus’ daughter; Comme des Garçons’ Adrian Joffe; fashion publishers Olivier Zahm of Purple and Ezra Petronio from Self Service; and Alexis Mabille, who didn’t let the fact of his impending haute couture show keep him away.

Photo: Courtesy of Reed Krakoff