H&M Captures Kenzo For Its Next Collaboration

Yes, it's the time of year when fast fashion mega-chain H&M announces its big fall collaboration, and this year's big winner is: Kenzo. The news was announced on all media fronts this morning. Current Kenzo designers Carol Lim and Humberto Leon of Opening Ceremony will launch the line on November 3rd in over 250 select H&M stores worldwide as well as online. While last year's Balmain collection arrived in a tsunami of celebrity glitz, red carpets and social media frenzy, Lim and Leon, who have been known to put on some impressive shows in their own right, can probably be counted on for a somewhat more esoteric but no less splashy way to promote the collection by the time it arrives in the fall —like the Jungle-themed CGI video on H&M's instagram that heralds the collaboration. It's intriguing and modern, yet recalls the audacious sense of color and pattern that brought designer Japanese designer Kenzo Takada his initial success. For those with less PC memories, it also obliquely refers to the designer's first Paris boutique opened in the 1970s called Jungle Jap.
The collaboration is a tribute of sorts to the success that Lim and Leon have had in re-invigorating an admired but aging fashion label since they took over creative duties in 2011. They have managed to shift the brand toward a modern, advanced contemporary point of view while still maintaining its essential, upbeat character. That should make it an especially good fit for a mass oriented retailer like H&M. "We wanted to really tell the story of the brand and of us. Together with H&M, we will invite all the costumers and fans to the real Kenzo world," Leon says in an interview published on H&M's website today.
So far, we only have the Instagram video to hint at what the collection might look like, but we can expect to see more hints about the collaboration throughout the Summer as we get closer to the launch date. As usual, sportswear and accessories for men and women are in the works, and we will be shocked if there aren't at least a few boldly printed sweatshirts in the mix.

KENZO X H&M In Designer Collaboration (


Is Under Armour Fighting Nike And Apple For Space In The GM Building?

Why, just last week we wrote about the potential battle between Apple and Nike for the former FAO Schwarz space on the 58th Street side of the GM Building (pictured above), and now the status quo has changed as another player, Under Armour, appears to have entered the fray. According to Crain's, the burgeoning performance athletic-wear company is in talks to take over at least part of the space that the legendary toy store has left vacant. Does that mean that Under Armour will now be nestled among Cartier, Apple and Bergdorf Goodman's Men's store which will be its neighbor across the street?
Reports say that the former toy palace with 13,ooo square feet on the ground floor and 40,000 on the second level is ultimately likely to be divided, and we don't know if Under Armour may be in talks for the whole thing or part of it, though if Nike is still looking to get into the space after its lease extension on 57th Street expires, it is unlikely that it would accept Under Armour as a direct adjacency.
Cartier's store on the 59th street side of the GM Building is technically temporary, and though there has been talk of the jewelry company holding on to it even after it's landmarked townhouse on Fifth Avenue is finally restored and renovated, it could also be in play within the next year or two.
The real question here, though, is whether or not Under Armour belongs in the GM Building amongst rarefied luxury flagships as well as the only electronics company that approaches luxury brand status? Nike, for all its prosaic qualities, has a coolness factor that allows it to be included amongst the avant-garde designers curated at Comme des Garçons' Dover Street Market. We could see it moved to the GM Building, but Under Armour? Does it really have that level of prestige?
We tend to think no, not that that has any bearing on whether or not a lease will be negotiated and signed. It does, however, remind us of the early 1990s, when there was a multi-level Warner Brothers Studio Store on the corner of 57th and Fifth, and a few blocks down Fifth Avenue, shoppers found an equally lavish Walt Disney store. Retailers in the neighborhood griped that the stores were degrading the area's prestige level (though there were fewer complaints when Nike took over the beleaguered space that was originally Bonwit Teller's replacement store). Eventually, those two cartoon palaces became Louis Vuitton and The Polo Store, and all was once again right with Fifth Avenue. Will the same sentiments follow Under Armour to the GM Building. The brand seems at home with a huge flagship on lower Broadway in SoHo, but will is be as comfortable a fit on one of New York's most luxurious corners?

Nike may get muscled out of prime GM Building retail space (Crain's)


Roberto Cavalli, Tracy Reese + Theory & James Perse Redux

As we head into Memorial Day weekend, the sample sale schedule will ramp up, and we are full expecting more last minute events to pop-up before the end of the week. Here are some highlights for what we have on schedule so far:

Yesterday brought a two-day RACHEL ZOE blowout sale at Clothingline in the Garment District that you can still catch before the end of today. Otherwise, shoppers can head down to the Meatpacking District for a combined sale from LILLA P. and LEO & SAGE which are promising plenty of summer sportswear and dresses at deep discounts through Thursday.

Today brings a few heavy hitters that shoppers will have been anticipating. TRACY REESE has long been a favorite for her contemporary dresses and sportswear, and her label has frequently found its way to the back of the First Lady, so this is always a popular sale featuring samples, runway pieces and back stock in all sizes starting at $40 through Thursday.
ROBERTO CAVALLI makes his debut with 260SampleSale today in their SoHo location featuring Women's and Men's Apparel, Shoe and Accessory collections. It promises to offer all the glitz and glamor associated with the designer, so look for a line, and enough merchandise to last through Sunday.
Wasn't there a JAMES PERSE sale just a few weeks ago? Yes, there was, but this one has moved back uptown to its usual haunt at 260 Fifth Avenue with vastly more room and merchandise. It's always worth a visit to stock up on Perse's singular tees and casual wear which will be there through Sunday.

Fans of elegant women's apparel will be making their way to The Meatpacking District today only for deep discounts from one of the Duchess of Cambridge's favorite designers, JENNY PACKHAM. The one-day-only sale promises all of Packham's collections with an emphasis on Bridal wear, so be prepared to shop alongside a few Bridezillas.
Finally, yet another THEORY sale hits the Chelsea Market on Wednesday. This one is for the guys, promising up to 60% off the label's popular sportswear and tailored separates. Shop through Sunday.

While sales may taper off for the Holiday weekend, there are already some big names scheduled for the upcoming weeks including Tory Burch, La Perla, Rebecca Taylor and the return of the long lost Diane von Furstenberg sale. Keep an eye on our SALE ROLL sidebar at left for times and locations as well as late-breaking sales.


Stella McCartney Is Headed Uptown

Image: GoogleMaps

Stella McCartney's long rumored uptown store has been officially finalized as the designer signed a deal last week to sublease a multi-level townhouse space from art dealer Mallet at 929 Madison Avenue. The store between 73rd and 74th street will include 5,400 square feet from the basement through the third floor, making it technically just a bit bigger than McCartney's current SoHo store. While it is just north of the traditional prime stretch of Madison from 57th to 72nd Street, it is south of the Met Breuer, formerly the Whitney Museum, which has added a lot of heat to those few blocks where stylish shoe label Aquazzura and exclusive leather goods maker Monyat have just debuted new boutiques. It may be too early to ask for projected opening dates just yet, but the store will finally bring the popular designer to a street that many thought she had stayed off for too long.

UES Location for Stella McCartney Is Done Deal (Commercial Observer)


Olivier Rousteing's Nike Collaboration Just As Shiny As You Would Expect


Another hot designer has joined the ranks of sneaker behemoth NikeLab's collaborators. Over the weekend, Balmain's creative director Olivier Rousteing announced via his Instagram that he would be joining forces to launch a NikeLab x Olivier Rousteing: Football Nouveau collection by posting a a new logo featuring the famous swoosh and his own initials in a regal shield shaped crest. The gold-and-black color scheme reflects the increasingly baroque sensibility that he expresses in his fashion collections, but, like his fellow designer Roberto Tisci of Givenchy, Rousteing's team up will be under his own name, or initials, rather than under the auspices of the Parisian label that brought him fame. Whether this is a pattern that will follow through future designer collaborations remains to be seen, but it does seem that, like Tisci, whose initial items focused on a reimagining of Nike's iconic Air Force 1 sneaker, Rousteing's collection will center around a particular theme, soccer, in this case —and lots of gold trimmings. New product images released this morning show the designer himself as model in simple black t-shirts with gold logo decals, some gilt-trimmed sweatpants and lots of golden soccer balls. He even shares one image with star footballer Cristiano Ronaldo decked out in the collection (pictured above) shot by Nick Knight. Items, also photographed on pro-footballers, include jackets, tops and pants all in black touched with gold trimming and zippers, and four Nike soccer shoes, Footscape Magista, Free Mercurial Flyknit, Roshe Tiempo VI and Free Hypervenom 2 re-imagined by Rousteing. The collection will be available as soon as next week on June 2. we are expecting the collection to appear at the NikeLab store in SoHo and at Dover Street Market as well as select other sneaker outlets that focus on the brand's more fashion-y offerings —more likely at Barneys than at Foot Locker. Get ready for another hot collaboration rush sometime this summer, and have a look at the promo video of Rousteing at work below and more of the images including some spectacular shots by Knight for Dazed and Confused magazine after the jump.

Olivier Rousteing (Instagram)
A Golden Touch: NikeLab x Olivier Rousteing (Nike News)

Football Nouveau from NIKELAB on Vimeo.


Olivier Rousteing's Nike Collaboration Just As Shiny As You Would Expect" »


Diane von Furstenberg, Cynthia Rowley, Tracy Reese, Sigerson-Morrison & More

Our roster of Flash Sale sites has diminished a bit with last week's closure of MyHabit, but there are still three major players worth keeping track of. Here is your weekly sampling of some of the brands you can expect to find on them. You should click over to the sites themselves for a full schedule of events, and be sure to check for the correct start time for each sale. Shop well!

Cynthia Rowley, Natori, Loewe, NuFace, Luciano Barbera, Miramare Sandals, Nixon Watches, Antik Batik, Splendid, Sigerson Morrison, Finlay & Co. Sunglasses, L'Agence, Dezso by Sara Beltrán, Ava & Aiden, Ben Sherman, Heritor Watches, 2(X)IST, Persol, Globe, Pierre Balmain —join HERE
LeSportsac, Joyfolie, KC Designs Jewelry, Sharper Image, FENDI, Gianvito Rossi, Christian Louboutin, David Donahue, French Sole, Ben Sherman, CATHERINE Catherine Malandrino, Chan Luu, Platypus Australia Kids, Peacock Alley, Dyson, Diane von Furstenberg  —join HERE
Joe's Jeans, Ella Moss, Soludos, TOV, Cole Haan, Filebrequin, PLENTY by Tracy Reese, Basler, Versace Collection, LORAC, Current Elliott, FACELESS, Steve Madden, Allen Edmonds, ETON, Tommy Bahama  —join HERE


The Comme des Garçons/Dover Street Market Sale Will Close Early On Sunday

See that line of people wrapped around the corner of Houston and Washington Streets? They have cleaned out the Comme des Garçons/Dover Street Market Super-Market-Market, and now there's not enough left to keep the sale open for the full four days it was originally scheduled for. If you were planning to catch the last gasp on Monday, then you will have to change your plans and brave the crowds on Sunday from noon to 7 PM. Best of luck to all, and plan for a bit of line waiting.


The Second Week In July Will Be The Last For Scoop NYC

ScoopLiquidationToday's Thursday Styles has a look back at the rise and fall of the Scoop NYC boutique chain that is currently in the process of liquidating, and the most significant bit of information it reveals is that the chain will finally shutter its stores on the second week of July. That gives it about eight more weeks to get rid of its inventory which should mean escalating discounts through the sale period. It's not exactly the best time to be liquidating, since Scoop will be competing with the regular seasonal markdowns in all of the other stores that have the same merchandise, and it will have to go a bit deeper than the 20% off it has mostly been offering for the past couple of weeks in order to compete with regular old sales elsewhere.
Otherwise, the story told in the article by former insiders is much as we have heard. The once hot chain lost a bit of its mojo when co-founder Stefani Greenfield departed and the up and coming labels it helped to discover became less exclusive and opened their own boutiques —generally in competing locations— and became mainstays in the burgeoning contemporary departments of major retailers like Saks and Neiman Marcus. Instead of replacing those maturing labels with newer, hotter ones, the store chugged along as a comfortable if less essential stop the millennial shopping tour until skyrocketing rents and ill-advised leases did it in Now there are eight weeks left to how much Scoop can slash its prices enough to make us all come back to clear its racks and shelves.
Liquidations are an inherently bittersweet stage of a store closure, but we will try to keep shoppers updated on just how much of a discount is being offered.

The Last Days of Scoop By Marisa Meltzer (NYTimes)


Are Apple and Nike Fighting Over The Old FAO Schwarz Space?

Most recent reports are telling us that this year has brought tough times for retail real estate with shopping falling short of projections for the past couple of seasons, but in Manhattan, the right space is still in demand.
Take the now long-empty Fifth Avenue space in the GM Building vacated by FAO Schwarz last year (pictured above). for several months now, we have all been under the impression that Apple will temporarily take over the space while it renovates its 24-hour flagship store underneath the building's plaza, but now we are told that the tech company is now looking to add all or part of the above-ground store as permanent space. This comes on the heels of reports that had Nike negotiating for the space, but it has also been reported that the sneaker icon has renewed its Niketown lease on East 57th Street through 2022. While they may still be interested in the GM building space, ultimately, the building's owner, Boston Properties, will have to decide if it is worth it to keep the space empty for Nike for a few more years, or to make a deal with Apple which is said to be balking at the $2,700 to $4,450 per square foot asking rent for the space and feels it deserves a break since it has drawn such attention and prestige to the location with its store. Will Apple need all 61,000 square feet in addition to its underground space. How will they differentiate merchandise for two side-by-side stores? Will there be an underground passageway to connect the two separate spaces, or will some other mega-brand swoop in to take over the still-prestigious retail space out from under both Apple and Nike's noses?
We should know these answers soon —or maybe not. Essentially, we will hear it when we hear it.

Apple likely to expand at GM Building on “temp” basis (TheRealDeal)


Comme des Garçons and Dover Street Market's Super-Market-Market Rules The Week, But Don't Miss Paul Smith, Public School & More

Were you waiting for a busy sale week?
Well, it's here. This week offers a bona fide plethora of sample sales timed just before retail stores start their first seasonal markdowns. Let's get started because even the highlights are a lot to cover.

Yesterday was the first day of NANCY GONZALEZ's always anticipated sale, but don't worry. The popular designer's exotic skin bags and accessories will be on sale in midtown through Wednesday, so you still have plenty of time to snag a nice little crocodile clutch or whatever strikes you.

We have a big day happening on Tuesday.
Starting off we have PAUL SMITH's ever-popular seasonal sale at 260SampleSale's Greene Street location just a few steps from Smith's own flagship store in SoHo. Look for deep discounts on Men's and women's designer apparel and shoes along with books and the other collectible furnishing items that he loves to spice up his shops with. Speaking from our personal experience, we can report that it is tough to go through a Paul Smith sample sale without finding some must have item. Be prepared for eager crowds. Today's session starts at 3 PM after the VIP's do their shopping, but more regular hours will continue through Sunday.
UPDATE: The Paul Smith sale is mostly menswear with a smaller women's section. Shoes and Gift Items are downstairs and priced by colored dot. See the price lists after the jump.
260 Fifth Avenue has been give over to an unusual triple header cosmetics, fragrance and candle sale featuring TOCCA candles, STILA makeup and GHD styling tools, so it should be popular for beauty and fragrance fans through Sunday.
Heading back to SoHo, CANVAS HOME has moved its warehouse sale from its former Chelsea home to to a new venue. Look for its signature table and glass ware along with furniture and other modern home accessories through Sunday.

It's a good day for ladies as Texas-born LELA ROSE's popular dresses and ready to wear will be up to 75% off in the garment district for three days through Friday.
For something a little sportier, head to the West Village for designer Rie Yamagata's RHIÉ contemporary collection on sale for two days only. Look for quirky dresses and sportswear at great prices including both samples and stock.
It wouldn't be a big sale week without some kind of THEORY sale. This one is at the Chelsea Market and promises 70% off the women's collection only.

One of fashion's most influential designers, NORMA KAMALI has almost become almost like a best kept secret. Her sales are short but productive and shoppers have but one day, Thursday, to pick up items from all her collections past and present for a mere $50 to $100. RSVP HERE to ensure admission. 
One of the season's most reliably satisfying showroom sales kicks off Thursday at THE NEWS in SoHo. This hub for men's and women's upper contemporary collections is always worth a serious visit. Go for PUBLIC SCHOOLTIM COPPENS or COMMON PROJECTS' coveted sneakers and stay for all sorts of other labels like Cheap Monday, Officine Generale and more. Shop through Saturday, but go early for the best selection.
Also on Thursday, jewelry designer ALEXIS BITTAR will be offering deep savings on his jewelry designs ranging from fashion pieces staring at $25 to more important pieces featuring precious metals and gemstones through Sunday

One big event is scheduled for today, but it might have shoppers waiting outside all week. It's the only-once-every-few-years COMME des GARÇONS DOVER STREET MARKET SUPER-MARKET-MARKET which promises not only items from all of the myriad Comme des Garçons collections including Noir and Junya Watanabe, but also Dover Street Market collections. Whether or not this means private label only or previous season overstock from the many other designers carried by the store is still in question, but either way, this is one of the main events of the season. Be prepared for a wait, although the location at Skylight Clarkson Square in SoHo should allow for plenty of room and hopefully lots of room for everyone to shop.

Finally, if you have been unable to shop all week, take advantage of Soiffer Haskin's FRETTE sale to restock you luxury bed and bath needs through next Tuesday.

That's a full week by anyone's standards, but there's more coming next week including James Perse and Roberto Cavalli's main collection along with plenty of last-minute additions. Keep an eye on our SALE ROLL sidebar on the left for times and locations as well as the inevitable late breaking sales.

Continue reading "SAMPLE CIRCUIT:

Comme des Garçons and Dover Street Market's Super-Market-Market Rules The Week, But Don't Miss Paul Smith, Public School & More" »


Jonathan Saunders Is Diane Von Furstenberg's New Chief Creative Officer


In the general human resources chaos that has been created but the constant comings and goings of designers to and from major labels, one significant  job has been filled. Glasgow-born designer Jonathan Saunders has been named Chief Creative Officer at Diane Von Furstenberg. Now, in the general scheme of things, this isn't necessarily one of the big jobs that people have been buzzing about, mainly because DVF has generally not had high profile creative directors in the past. This marks the first time that the company has hired a star designer to handle creative duties, and the designer will be making an unusual shift from the higher-end designer category to the more widely distributed contemporary world. Saunders shuttered his own, acclaimed label last fall after twelve years, and gained enough prominence to score a Target collaboration capsule collection along the way. His was also one of the names frequently mentioned as a possible replacement for Raf Simons' empty job at Dior. His proficiency in creating distinctive prints makes him a good fit for DVF where printed dresses have always been a signature item. "The spirit with which this brand was founded is incredibly relevant today. I am thrilled to be part of its next chapter,” Saunders said in a statement announcing his new appointment. “Diane has a unique ability to deeply connect with women and I am excited to be working with Paolo on the future of the brand." Sanders will report to DVF Chief executive Paolo Riva, and, as he has been announce to start immediately, his first collection is expected to be for Spring 2017 which shows this September —or whenever designers are showing their collections these days.

Jonathan Saunders Joins Diane Von Furstenberg as Chief Creative Officer (The Business Of Fashion)


Dolce & Gabbana, Brunello Cucinelli, Marc Jacobs, NARS, Timberland, Valentino, & The Last Week of MY HABIT

Here is your weekly sampling of some of the brands you can expect to find on the bigger online Flash Sale Sites this week. You should click over to the sites themselves for a full schedule of events, and be sure to check for the correct start time for each sale. Shop well!

A.L.C., Cynthia Steffe, Dolce & Gabbana, James Tattersall, Goodlife, Roberto Coin, Prism Swim, Neuw Denim, MARC by Marc Jacobs, Z Zegna, Zanerobe, Bruno Magli, Howe, Ballin, Opening Ceremony —join HERE
Haute Hippie, Jantzen, TUMI, Marc Fisher LTD, Terre Mere, Steinhausen Watches & Winders, TOD's, Via Spiga, Herschel Supply Co., Salvatore Ferragamo, Brooks Brothers, Amrita Singh, Mariposa —join HERE
7 For All Mankind, Jeffrey Campbell, Simon Sebbag Jewelry, Velvet by Graham & Spencer, Diesel, CLAE, Free People, Origins, Lipsy London, Stuhrling Watches, GBX, Deus Ex Machina, Travis Mathew, Aspics, Rachel Pally, One Teaspoon, Foley + Corinna, Todd Snyder, Parke & Ronen —join HERE
Alain Mikli, Joe's Jeans, Yummie by Heather Thompson, Brunelli Cucinelli, Roberto Cavalli, Salvatore Ferragamo, Cubavera, Lafayette 148, Chloé, J.McLaughlin, Joan Vass, NARS, Taryn Rose, Valentino, Timberland, Stella McCartney, Ben Sherman, J.A.C.H.S., J.Lindeberg, Versace Jeans, Diesel, Cullen, Byron Lars, A.B.S. by Allen Schwartz  —join HERE


Scoop Shifts Into Liquidation Mode While Carson Street Remains Serene At Half Price

It's going to be a sad couple months with some great bargains as New York says goodbye to a cornerstone of contemporary retailing along with a short-lived but much admired men's boutique.
Scoop NYC confirmed early Monday that all of its stores would be closing over the next several weeks and commenced a modest 10% off storewide promotion suggesting that it would be going the slow route toward clearing merchandise, but as regular, non-liquidating stores are set to release spring markdowns in a few weeks, it seems like an acceleration is in order. Today, The Shophound was notified that storewide discounts have risen to 20% off with certain categories like boots and off-season accessories discounted 30% to 40% off the lowest ticket prices. We didn't see anything that had been previously reduced, so it would appear that most everything offered is still marked at full price, but the ugly liquidation posters are up in the windows, and when we stopped by the Third Avenue Scoop on the Upper East Side (pictured above and below) merchandising was being reorganized on the racks by category; dresses over here, pants over there, etc. At this point, the discounts are not extraordinary, but it may be worth it to venture forth to save a little on certain non-seasonal items that rarely get discounted like certain shoe and sneaker styles and other accessories. Further reductions are sure to be on the way , but regular Scoop fans should know that the most recent sale notice was sent to Shophound email as a press notification and specifically not to the personal email which is on's regular mailing list. This may be because Scoop's e-commerce website has been closed entirely aside from a landing page that will direct you to the nearest store. The G.O.B. sale is now exclusively brick-and-mortar, so don't wait for any big discounts online, but, since it is not a court-ordered bankruptcy liquidation, the store is still accepting any remaining gift certificates.
The other big goodbye this season is to the short lived but much loved Carson Street, (pictured below) which notified its customers that its entire stock is now a tough to resist 50% off. We stopped by on Monday afternoon to check it out in person and found the store locked and dark at what seemed to be a reasonable shopping time. We were a bit perplexed as to how its clearance would be handled. Online only? We made our way there again this afternoon, and found it open as normal. You would never have known that there was a closing sale going on. The store seemed as tranquil as always, and full of lots of designers that aren't widely distributed, or discounted, and certainly won't found at half price at this point in the season. On the racks as usual were labels like Lemaire, J.W. Anderson, Jil Sander, Greg Lauren, Tim Coppens, Tomas Maier, Umit Benan and Ami to name just a few. Anyone who is a fan of more directional menswear should make it their business to get down to Carson Street's Greene Street store posthaste, although, if you can't make it down to SoHo, its e-commerce site is still up and running and featuring the current discount.
So that's the clearance report for the moment. We will do our best to keep you as up to date as possible on these bittersweet sale situations.


Sparkle Feet Edition

Photo by Jennifer S. Altman for The New York Times

Critical Shopper Jon Caramanica returns in this week's Thursday Styles to take on the dismayingly resilient trend of luxury designer sneakers by visiting the newly expanded Giuseppe Zanotti Design boutique on Madison Avenue. Designer sneakers are nothing new. They go back decades, but the current iteration, mostly aimed at men, has resulted in increasingly embellished and costly athletic shoes that are further and further removed from any actual sports that they were originally intended for. While Zanotti is hardly the only designer offering such footwear, he does make some of the most baroquely adorned models. Our shopper compares the designer's style to the "brazen, sexy vulgarity" of the 1980s, although as someone who lived through that decade, we can assure that Zanotti's designs far surpass the glitz of that decade with higher heels and flashier materials than anything anyone wore back then. 
In fact, it is the glitz of the actual store that first strikes our shopper's eye, but it seems almost too humble a setting for Zan0tti's ever more lustrous offerings. Our shopper isn't blinded by the gleaming surfaces before him, however. It turns out that the increasingly impractical shoes are not all that comfortable. "All of the sneakers I tried on had the first-wear inflexibility of shoes, and the leather began to visibly crack with the first steps," he writes, describing them as "like wearing huge pieces of candy on your feet." The token apparel items presented to complement the shoes seem similarly shiny, impractical and uncomfortable. Ultimately, our shopper never really gets to the bottom of whom this store and its crass sneakers are for. Who is the guy (as usual, Caramanica mostly ignores the larger women's side of the store) who wants to drop $1,250 on an extravagant, bejeweled variation on a pair of $150 Nikes? We never really find the answer beyond the suggestion that it is not our shopper.

Critical Shopper: The Store With the Golden Sneakers By Jon Caramanica (NYTimes)
Giuseppe Zanotti Design 806 Madison Avenue between 68th & 68th Streets, Upper East Side


Diesel Denim, Louboutin & Another Minkoff Handbag Bonanza Lead This Week's Sales

It's not a heavily scheduled sale week, but what we do have are some tried and true favorite events that bring out serious crowds.
Lets start with one of the most anticipated:

The big shoe sale trifecta is completed today with CHRISTIAN LOUBOUTIN's highly exclusive sale set for the garment district. We divulge this information with major caveats as this sale is notoriously hard to get into without an invitation. it is known to open up occasionally on the final day, but intrepid shopper have been known to slip in. Venture forth at your own risk if you must, but we can't promise you will get in.

REBECCA MINKOFF can be relied upon for a strong sale sale turnout, and the line waiting to get into yesterday's opening day went all the way down the block at 260 Fifth Avenue. Regular Minkoff fans will be familiar with the offerings which basically comprised tables and tables of every permutation of handbag from glittery minaudière to casual totes. True to the brand, there are lots of bright colors and textured materials. There was a small selection of men's Ben or Uri Minkoff bags and accessories, but not a huge amount, and we don't expect much to stick around unless there is major restocking. There were even some Men's shoes, which we didn't even know they made. Overall, prices looked good, merchandise looked abundant and fans should be satisfied. Runs through Saturday.

Downtown at 260SampleSale's Greene Street location, DIESEL unloads its seasonal array of samples and overstock today including both the main label and the premium Diesel Black Gold runway line. The selection seems a bit smaller than last season's offerings, but there is still tons of stuff which we previewed yesterday. Runs through Sunday.

AEFFE's seasonal showroom sale on West 56th street has been a major draw for decades. The designers have changed over the years, but the allure remains strong. Currently, the luxury manufacturer/showroom's lineup includes MOSCHINOALBERTA FERRETTI and EMANUEL UNGARO as well as Philosophy di Lorenzo Serafini, Cedric Charlier, Fuzzi and more. Shop for three days through Friday.

Finally, on Sunday, gentlemen looking to refresh their business wardrobes will be converging on Soiffer Haskin to hit the HICKEY FREEMAN sale through next Thursday. Look for racks and racks of classic, expertly tailored suits along with dress furnishings and elegant but very conservative sportswear and golf apparel.

That's not all. There's also Lalique in New Jersey, Loeffler Randall,  Bonpoint and Adam Lippes to name a few. Keep your eyes on our SALE ROLL sidebar at left for details and late breaking events.
Next week, brace yourself for more with Nancy Gonzalez, Paul Smith and much more as we head to peak season as Memorial Day approaches.