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Home » Dior Heads to Mexico, Hugo Boss Launches Blue, Foot Locker Taps WSS Leader

Dior Heads to Mexico, Hugo Boss Launches Blue, Foot Locker Taps WSS Leader

by News Desk

AROUND THE WORLD: Dior is racking up the air miles.

Following its pre-fall show in Mumbai in March, the French fashion house has revealed it will unveil its cruise 2024 collection in Mexico City on May 20. It plans to disclose the exact location at a later date.

Maria Grazia Chiuri, artistic director of womenswear collections at Dior, will continue her tradition of collaborating with local craftspeople on the annual collection, which has the potential to significantly boost tourism revenues in its destination.

“Through this exciting dialogue, the creative director will highlight the artistry and some of the emblematic figures of this country that has been dear to Dior’s heart since the beginning of the house in 1947,” the brand said in a statement.

Chiuri established a bridge with Mexican culture with her cruise 2019 collection, staged in the royal stables of the Domaine de Chantilly in France. The event featured a team of female Mexican rodeo riders, though it’s remembered mainly for the heavy rainstorm that doused models and guests in the semi-open venue.

Dior staged the cruise show in Seville, Spain, last year and in Athens, Greece, in 2021. The latter was the first major runway show with an audience following the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic.

The brand, owned by French luxury conglomerate LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton, has kept up a steady pace of physical events since, including a women’s show in Seoul, and men’s events in Los Angeles and Cairo, Egypt.

It won’t be the first time Dior has organized a runway show in Latin America. The house has staged presentations in several countries in the region, including one in Mexico in 1954, a spokeswoman said. — JOELLE DIDERICH

GOING BLUE: Hugo Boss is shining a light on denim.

As part of a brand refresh that started last year, the German company is launching Hugo Blue, a collection dedicated to denim that will debut in the summer of 2024.

The Hugo store in London.

courtesy of Hugo Boss

The new line will sport the Hugo logo in blue and is targeted to young men and women. It is inspired by street culture and will feature jeans along with jerseys, knitwear, outerwear and accessories. Some of the pieces will be unisex.

“In line with our new brand direction and 24/7 approach, we are continuously expanding our range of casualwear offerings,” said Daniel Grieder, chief executive officer of Hugo Boss. “Building on the successful brand refresh of Hugo, it was a natural step forward for us to launch a second line under Hugo. With the new line we appeal to the younger generation of consumers and realize the brand’s full potential. We want to inspire our customers and are confident that Hugo Blue will attract new fans for Hugo.”

Hugo Blue will create four collections a year and will be sold at the same entry price as the existing Hugo line, which is destined to appeal to a younger shopper. It will launch with a marketing campaign as well as a shop concept. The products will arrive at retail in February 2024. The Boss collection features more tailored pieces and is higher in price.

Under the leadership of Grieder, who took over the reins of the fashion brand in the summer of 2020, the brand has performed well. In the first quarter of this year, revenues rose 25 percent to 968 million euros, a sales target it hit two years ahead of plan. Earnings before interest and taxes were also ahead of analyst expectations, hitting 65 million euros in the year, above the 59 million euros the market had projected. — JEAN E. PALMIERI

NEW HIRE: As Inc. continues to overhaul its executive ranks under chief executive officer Mary Dillon, the retail giant is banking on a new hire from Nike to fuel growth at its WSS chain.

Blanca Gonzalez has been named the senior vice president and general manager of WSS, effective May 15. She will report to Frank Bracken, executive vice president and chief commercial officer of Foot Locker Inc. (Jeffrey Porter had been interim GM of WSS.)

Blanca Gonzalez

courtesy of Foot Locker

Prior to joining Foot Locker Inc., Gonzalez spent more than 19 years at Nike Inc., most recently as vice president of North America product merchandising. Throughout her time with the athletic giant, Gonzalez held various leadership roles within marketing, merchandising and sales.

Now she will bring her experience to WSS, a neighborhood-centric retailer with locations throughout the West Coast and a deep connection with Latine communities.

“I have watched WSS grow its footprint in Latino communities by investing in authentic and culturally relevant touch points with its customers,” Gonzalez said in a statement. “WSS has proven to demonstrate a high level of cultural awareness that honors and respects the richness of the Latino experience. Together we’ll build on this relationship, continuing WSS’s success and growth, while being keenly focused on how we best serve the communities where we operate.”

Bracken lauded the executive’s “vast knowledge of the sneaker industry.”

“Blanca’s remarkable experience, understanding of our diverse customers and personal roots within WSS’s home turf will help deepen our relationships within communities and expand WSS’ unique offering of culturally connected experiences. She will also help us build the talent and operational capabilities to rapidly scale WSS, making it our next $1 billion banner,” he said.

Foot Locker Inc. announced the acquisition of WSS in August 2021 for $750 million in cash.

In March, Dillon — who joined the company in September 2022 — revealed the company’s multipronged strategy to increase market share and grow sales to $9.5 billion by 2026. This included a continuation of WSS serving the Latine market and capturing more demand from that growing demographic. — PETER VERRY

BIG SALE: Whitney Robinson and Marc Karimzadeh are feeling a big lighter these days.

The couple last month auctioned off contents of their New York City apartment and former East Hampton home at Doyle Auctioneers & Appraisers. Nearly all the contemporary sculpture, paintings, jewelry and furnishings within 194 lots were auctioned off.

Marc Karimzadeh and Whitney Robinson

Andrew Day

“Marc and Whitney were incredible partners in the sale,” said Laura Doyle, chief executive officer of Doyle. “They were so engaged in social media and so open to work with us. It helped us tell the story having them telling it, too. We were thrilled with the results and the process. Their collection was a rich tapestry reflecting their lives, travels, friendships and careers,” said Doyle, who declined to reveal how much money was raised because of confidentiality agreements.

After 20 years of collecting, Robinson, the former design editor and real estate developer and global brand consultant, and Karimzadeh, CFDA editorial and communications director, decided to declutter their apartment, decorated by Miles Redd and David Kaihoi, and their former East Hampton residence, which they sold in 2014. Many of their furnishings and artwork were in storage.

“Both Whitney and I have been in the creative business for a very long time. We’ve traveled a lot and we’ve accumulated a lot of things, and over the course of time, we’ve had four homes. We always ended up adding to our collections. We felt it was time — rather put them in storage — to have other people enjoy some of the beautiful pieces we have accumulated over the years,” said Karimzadeh.

Among the items sold were a set of 12 Jonas upholstered mahogany gondola chairs for $8,820, a glass waterfall console for $693, a Ralph Lauren Art Deco-style mahogany upholstered sofa and club chair for $2,268, an Armani Cerused oak occasional table for $504, a Lalique Languedoc Black Glass Vase for $1,260, a group of Elsa Peretti for Tiffany & Co. glass barware for $1,764 and a group of fashion books for $1,071.

At the high end, a brooch by Schlumberger that Tiffany & Co. designed as a glittering gold, blue paillonné enamel, diamond and gem-set camel went for $11,970, while a Russell Crotty American globe sold for $10,080, a world auction record for the artist. One of the only items, a Gio Ponti Walnut Secretaire and Chair estimated between $50,000 and $80,000, went unsold.

Robinson, who has previously been editor in chief of Elle Decor and style director at Town & Country, said, “It’s the blessing and the curse of fashion and collecting. I think one of the things of being an editor is you want to be able to support artisans from around the world. You can write about them, as we always did, you can work with them as I do now with my consultancy…or by buying stuff.”

Robinson said they have a couple of storage units in Greenwich, Connecticut, and in New York, and they could probably fill another 1,000 lots. “Over the years, we would rotate things in and out…we were really working in the heyday of collecting and traveling and in the height of magazines,” he said. He said the last apartment they were living in was about 3,500 square feet, “and no corner was spared.” They have since moved into another apartment, and the collecting has started up again.

“We are unabashedly maximalists,” added Robinson. — LISA LOCKWOOD

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