There’s so much excitement around designer collaborations, with the entire thing, in some ways, feeling like the biggest, best sale in the world. Amid all the buzz that leads up to the release and the panic to shop before stuff sells out, it’s a retail rush (FYI, I woke up at approximately 4 a.m. to shop the Phillip Lim one).
Affordable clothes aside, the relationship between retail mammoth and hot-young designer is fascinating on its own, explaining why I enjoyed Joseph Altuzarra’s interview with New York Times so much. Prior to manically shopping his collab when it comes out on September 14, I’m devoting some time to understanding how the experience was for him.
“Being invited to a collaboration means that in some sense your brand stands for something. It enhances my image and brings my name out there in a way that, on my own, I never could.” There’s the not-so-small matter of all of Target’s nearly 1,800 brick and mortar stores, but also the huge ad campaign that comes with these collaborations (a first for many of the designers they work with). Money is involved, too, with retail analysts suggesting that Target’s financial support of the designer varies between $500,000 to $1 million, a hefty chunk for a company that’s still small, according to the Gray Lady.
As for what you can expect to shop next month: bold snakeskin skirts, ankle-strap pumps, and peasant blouses with exotic trim (clothes will range from $18 to $90, accessories and shoes from $30 to $80). The small touches that designers of Altuzarra’s caliber favor will remain, too, like figure-flattering darts, French seaming, and a more-elaborate-than-normal construction designed to give skirts a flirty swing.
And don’t think the collaborations are just good for us shoppers and the designer—it’s a complete love triangle. “With Joseph we were into that person really hitting his stride at that moment,” Trish Adams, Target’s executive vice president for apparel and home merchandising explained in the article.