It has been more than a decade since Target launched its first designer collaboration, sparking a seemingly endless number of imitators. The pairings lure customers with the promise of designer looks at mass market prices, while the designers and retailers leverage the power of two brand names into often lucrative business endeavors.
And although a few of last year’s efforts fell a bit flat — Neiman Marcus and Target’s highly touted holiday collection went on mark-down after only three weeks, for instance — pairings are still going strong. Here are some of the most alluring style collaborations planned in the first half of this year.
Prabal Gurung and Sam & Libby for Target
Next in line to design a limited-edition collection for Target is New York-based designer Prabal Gurung, who counts Jennifer Lawrence, Rooney Mara, First Lady Michelle Obama and the Duchess of Cambridge among his star fans. Known for polished, ladylike styles with standout colors and prints, Gurung’s collection of 90-plus pieces for Target will include apparel, shoes, handbags and jewelry, starting at $12.99. Scheduled to launching on Feb. 10, just in time for Valentine’s Day, the looks were inspired by the idea of “a tender love story” and include “First Date” and “Meet the Parents” prints. On May 5, Target plans to relaunch footwear label Sam & Libby, created by Sam and Libby Edelman in 1987, in an exclusive, ongoing collaboration. Twenty styles in the initial collection range include flats, wedges and pumps, starting at $24.99. Available at all Target stores and target.com.
Duro Olowu, Nanette Lepore, Marchesa and more for J.C. Penney
J.C. Penney plans a multitude of exclusive designer collections this season. Among the debuts are a range of evening gowns, suits and cocktail attire called Pearl by Georgina Chapman of Marchesa, launching on Feb. 22, and a junior line dubbed L’Amour by Nanette Lepore that hits stores on Feb. 1. Possibly the most anticipated is the department store chain’s partnership with London-based fashion designer Duro Olowu, whose signature is a mix of vibrant, graphic prints inspired by his homeland of Nigeria. While the designer is still making a name in the United States, First Lady Michelle Obama has been wearing Olowu’s dresses, jackets and tops since 2011. Designs include apparel, fashion accessories (handbags, jewelry, a suitcase and shoes), and home décor (vases and dhurrie rugs). Launching in stores on March 1, everything in the Olowu line is under $100. J.C.Penney’s home department will also introduce MarthaHome stores by Martha Stewart and unique shops by Jonathan Adler, Michael Graves and Terrence Conran in May. At select JCPenney stores and jcpenney.com
Derek Lam for DesigNation at Kohl’s
New York-based fashion designer Derek Lam, who has designed for eBay and luxury Italian leather goods house Tod’s, follows Narciso Rodriguez, as the second designer to participate in Kohl’s DesigNation series. The department store chain’s ongoing designer partnership features collections inspired by specific global destinations. Lam’s city of choice? Rio de Janeiro. Influenced by the patterns and saturated colors of the Brazilian city, Lam’s capsule line features relaxed-yet-sophisticated apparel and swimwear that can transition from beach to street, pool to party. Priced from $36 to $98, the pieces are to debut in April at Kohl’s stores and kohls.com.
AG Stylist Series; AG x Liberty London
Local denim brand AG Adriano Goldschmied debuts its AG Stylist Series Jan. 30 starting with a 14-piece denim line by Los Angeles celebrity stylist Cher Coulter, whose clients include Elizabeth Olsen, Nicole Richie, Sienna Miller and Kate Bosworth. Starting at $200, Coulter’s line for AG features shorts, jeans, vests, jackets and skirts in graphic and foil prints, with laser-cut detailing or embellishment. More yet-to-be-announced tastemakers will be featured in the ongoing AG Stylist Series. In February the denim brand will also unveil a capsule line in partnership with British heritage brand, Liberty London. The 15-item collection will showcase three iconic Liberty floral prints on denim in three favorite AG washes. Silhouettes include legging jeans, denim shorts, a chambray shirt and shirtdress, a romper and a fringed scarf. All fabrics are made and printed in Italy; pieces are priced from $198-$275. Available at the brand’s store on North Beverly Drive in Beverly Hills, agjeans.com and Scoop stores.
Nine West x Kirna Zabête
New York City fashion boutique Kirna Zabête has been a Soho shopping destination for nearly 15 years. On the heels of their collaboration with Target, owners Sarah Easly and Beth Buccini have now teamed up with footwear brand Nine West to design a line of shoes that will land in stores next month. The design duo will add four new styles (a flat, flip-flop, mid-heel and high heel) to the capsule collection each month for the next six months. Their concept is a “shoe wardrobe” with styles that fit landmark spring occasions or the month’s weather, such as April showers (rubber sandals and neoprene boots) and Mother’s Day in May (matching sandals for mother and daughter). Priced from $49 to $149, the footwear launches in February and continues through July at ninewest.com and kirnazabete.com.
DVF Loves ROXY
Renowned New York City fashion designer Diane von Furstenberg is teaming up with Huntington Beach-based surf and snow lifestyle brand Roxy for a limited-edition swim collection this spring. The line will feature von Furstenberg’s statement prints on 35 of Roxy’s signature styles, includingswimsuits and cover-ups, rash guards, board shorts and beach bags. “The collection is playful and fun...we wanted to empower women to go for it and ride the wave,” says von Furstenberg. Priced from $38-$88, DVF Loves Roxy will launch on March 7 at select Nordstrom, Bloomingdale’s and Quiksilver stores and roxy.com.
Fred Perry & No Doubt
We had not heard from local band No Doubt in more than a decade, but it is no surprise that the group, fronted by style maven Gwen Stefani, is launching a capsule fashion line, just months after dropping their latest album, “Push and Shove.” Influenced by their ska and reggae roots, No Doubt has updated three signature silhouettes for sportswear brand Fred Perry: The short-sleeved, collared shirt, available in men’s and women’s sizes ($95), a V-neck sweater in a colorful riff on tartan plaid ($170), and a 1950s-style, tartan-checked bomber jacket ($250). All three styles have a tri-color No Doubt tab at the hemline. “Fred Perry is a classic inspiration that has been part of our style since the beginning,” says Stefani. “Doing this collaboration is an honor.” Fred Perry’s last collaboration was with the late songstress Amy Winehouse on an apparel line in 2010 and 2011. No Doubt’s limited-edition shirt is available now, and the other two pieces will launch in February, exclusively online at fredperry.us/prereg-nodoubt/.
Loeffler Randall x Tucker
Some of the shoes and handbags in New York accessory line Loeffler Randall’s spring collection feature bold prints by another Manhattan brand: Tucker by Gaby Basora. Loeffler Randall designer Jessie Randall turned to friend Basora, whose fashion label is known for its signature blouses in playful prints, to help create patterns and fabrics “echoing high-society glamour of the French seaside.” The result? A bold black-and-white geometric and a colorful floral on a dark background, both showcased on linen-silk fabric that combines ease with elegance. The collaborative designs include a clutch handbag, a mini cross-body bag, and three shoe styles (platform sandals, pumps and an espadrille tennis shoe). Ranging from $195 to $425, the five styles launch Feb. 5 on loefflerrandall.com and at Saks Fifth Avenue, Barneys New York and TenOverSix on Melrose Avenue in West Hollywood.
H&M for Brick Lane Bikes
While rumors are swirling about an upcoming collaboration between H&M and French fashion house Givenchy, designed by Riccardo Tisci, a local spokeswoman for the fast-fashion retailer would not confirm the partnership. But the Sweden-based brand has made public a spring menswear collaboration with custom bike retailer Brick Lane Bikes of East London. Inspired by urban cycling and designed to be worn on or off a bicycle, the 11-piece collection fuses function with urban street fashion. Each style was road tested for wearability by Brick Lane Bikes staff. In synch with the eco-friendly nature of bicycle-riding, the line is made of sustainable materials, including organic cotton, recycled polyester and recycled cotton. Available on March 7 in select H&M stores.
The Mavi/Chalayan Collection
Turkish denim brand Mavi partners with British designer Hussein Chalayan (whose parents are Turkish) on a capsule collection for their higher-end Mavi Gold denim line. In stretchy dark denim, with black mesh and elastic band detailing, the 17 styles include skinny and high-rise jeans, jeggings, shorts, a skirt, dresses and tops, ranging from $160 to $200. The X-fit fabric, a signature of the Mavi Gold line, features horizontal and vertical stretch for a streamlined look and added comfort. Known for his avant-garde designs, Chalayan says he “was hoping to find new ways to shape and enhance the body with denim in this collaboration.” Available in March at mavi.com .
A.P.C. Retrosuperfuture; A.P.C. + Tooshie
French fashion brand A.P.C., known for its understated designs, has collaborated with Retrosuperfuture sunglasses, loved by celebrities such as Justin Bieber, Kanye West and Rihanna. Handmade in Italy, the limited-edition line of four acetate sunnies with Zeiss lenses are priced from $260 and are to hit stores on March 1. A.P.C. also continues the third year of a successful partnership with Parisian swimwear label Tooshie. This spring’s exclusive six-piece line of swimwear, launched this month, includes a men’s swim trunk in four patterns, four women’s swimsuits and one shimmery gold cover-up. All pieces are double-lined, hand-finished and crafted in Italy. Ranging from $215 to $360, they are available at A.P.C. on North Croft Avenue in West Hollywood.
Camper Together with Bernhard Willhelm, Veronique Branquinho, Romain Kremer
Spanish footwear brand Camper, known for its fusion of comfort and style, continues a long, ongoing partnership with three designers: Parisian Romain Kremer, currently the creative director of Thierry Mugler Men, and more prominent Belgian designers Veronique Branquinho and Bernhard Willhelm. In his sixth season, Kremer offers updates on the boat shoe in nautical-inspired colors, with a wedge heel for ladies. For her seventh partnership, Branquinho introduces a clean-lined platform derby shoe and “creepers” sandals in earthy hues. Willhelm, a veteran collaborator in his eighth season, creates cork-soled, animal-print bootie sandals with cylindrical heels and reinvents the brand’s wedge high-top in bold color and print. All lines launch in early February at the Camper store in the The Original Farmer’s Market at 6333 W. 3rd St. and camper.com