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Ready-­‐to-­‐Wear Final  Project:   Women’s  Blazers    

    Hannah  Turnbaugh   Introduction  to  Fashion  Business   May  8,  2013                                        

Table of  Contents       History  of  the  Blazer  –  pg  3     Saks  Fifth  Avenue  –  pgs  4-­6   Saks  Fifth  Avenue:  The  History  –  pg  4   Saks  Fifth  Avenue:  The  Experience  –  pg  5   Saks  Fifth  Avenue:  The  Garment  –  pg  6     Nordstrom  –  pgs  7-­9   Nordstrom:  The  History  –  pg  7   Nordstrom:  The  Experience  –  pg  8   Nordstrom:  The  Garment  –  pg  9     Barneys  New  York  –  pgs  10-­12   Barneys  New  York:  The  History  –  pg  10   Barneys  New  York:  The  Experience  –  pg  11   Barneys  New  York:  The  Garment  –  pg  12                            


The History  of  the  Blazer  

The blazer  is  recognized  as  “a  sports  jacket  that  is  not  worn  with  matching   trousers”.  A  garment  originally  designed  for  sportsmen  of  the  late  1800’s,  the  idea  of   a  blazer  for  women  began  to  catch  on  early  into  the  1920’s.  Coco  Chanel’s  early   designs  helped  popularized  the  concept  of  a  stylish  jacket  option  for  women.   Menswear  for  women  soon  caught  on  in  the  1930’s,  and  the  blazer  stayed  as  a   consistent  staple  throughout  women’s  fashion.   The  women’s  blazer  was  especially  influential  throughout  the  1970’s,  which   then  fed  into  the  1980’s.  Such  success  at  that  time  has  largely  been  credited  to  Ralph   Lauren’s  designs  inspired  by  the  English  countryside,  which  included  tweedy   blazers.  These  designs  were  then  extremely  popularized  by  Diane  Keaton  in  Annie   Hall.      

Woody  Allen  and  Diane  Keaton;  Annie  Hall,  1977                      



Saks Fifth  Avenue:  The  History    

Dreaming of  a  specialty  store  that  was  synonymous  with  a  fashionable  lifestyle,  Saks   Fifth  Avenue  was  opened  in  1924  by  Horace  Saks  and  Bernard  Gimble.  The  store   was  opened  on  upper  5th  Avenue  in  New  York  City,  between  49th  and  50th,  which   was  primarily  a  residential  area  at  the  time.     The  department  store  underwent  a  redesign  in  1926,  which  lead  to  a  series   of  luxurious  specialty  stores  within  the  department  store.  This  space  provided  the   finest  in  high  quality  men  and  women’s  fashions.       Since  then,  Saks  Fifth  Avenue  has  been  recognized  all  over  the  world  as  the   face  of  luxury  American  retailers.  Today  it  still  holds  the  same  luxurious,   fashionable,  chic  image  that  was  dreamed  of  almost  a  century  ago.  It  is  recognized   all  over  the  world  as  one  of  the  most  important  and  influential  designer  department   stores.  There  are  now  43  stores,  in  23  states,  and  4  international  locations.       Some  notable  launches  at  Saks  Fifth  Avenue  include  America’s  first  Christian   Dior  Boutique  in  the  1970’s,  and  Donna  Karan’s  debut  collection  in  the  1980’s.      


Saks Fifth  Avenue:  The  Experience  

Visual  Merchandising  –  The  merchandising  in  Saks  is  impeccable.  From  the   window  displays,  to  the  in  store  displays,  all  of  the  merchandise  storylines  were   chic,  well-­‐planned  visual  stories.  The  displays  and  furniture  add  so  much  to  the   entire  vibe  of  the  space,  they  are  understand  and  extremely  elegant  at  the  same   time.       Merchandise  Presentation  –  All  of  the  merchandise  was  organized,  in  place,  and   easy  to  sort  through;  everything  was  beautifully  presented.  Racks  were  nicely   presented  with  no  over-­‐crowding  or  clutter.       Customer  Service  –  Customer  service  here  was  much  better  than  I  expected.  I  had   been  running  errands  in  the  area  and  was  just  wearing  a  light  running  jacket,  yoga   pants,  and  running  sneakers,  since  I  was  in  the  area  I  thought  I  would  swing  in  to   check  things  out.  As  soon  as  I  walked  through  the  doors  I  immediately  regretted   entering  in  what  I  was  wearing,  however  it  didn’t  seem  to  matter  to  anyone  in  there   –  especially  the  sales  associates.  Everyone  was  so  friendly  and  warm,  and  more  than   eager  to  help  me.       Store  Maintenance  –  The  overall  maintenance  of  the  store  was  phenomenal.  It  is  a   huge  store,  but  it  was  easy  to  navigate.  The  layout  made  sense,  with  dedication  to   different  specialties  in  different  areas/on  different  floors.  The  fitting  rooms  were   slightly  disappointing  compared  to  the  rest  of  the  store,  because  they  seemed  a  little   average.  They  were,  however,  very  clean  and  well  maintained.     Overall  Experience  –  Overall  I  had  a  really  amazing  experience  at  Saks  Fifth   Avenue.  It  had  been  a  couple  years  since  I  had  been  into  a  Saks,  and  I  wasn’t   spending  any  money  (I’ve  only  ever  been  with  my  Mom  who  actually  spends  money   when  she  goes),  but  I  received  the  same  level  of  customer  service  that  she  does   when  she  goes.  It  is  such  a  large,  opulent  space,  however  everything  down  to  the   smallest  detail  seemed  to  be  in  order.    


Saks Fifth  Avenue:  The  Blazer    

Saint  Laurent  Wool  Blazer     Garment  Description  –  Black  wool  fitted  blazer  with  a  white  trim,  double  pockets,   single  button  closure/buttons  on  sleeves,  angular  lapels,  nipped  waist     Garment  Label  –  Medium  sized  white  label,  black  bold  “Saint  Laurent”  writing  with   “Paris”  underneath,  possibly  satin  (not  positive  of  tag  material)     Fiber  Content/Care  Instructions  –  Wool/dry  clean  only     Country  of  Origin  –  France     Suggested  Retail  Price  -­‐  $2,890.00     Size  Range  Offered  –  36,  38,  40,  42,  44     Styling  –  Classic     Signature  Design  Element  –  Signature  black  and  white  YSL  classic  look     Target  Customer  -­‐  The  ideal  customer  is  an  individual  over  the  age  of  25  with  a   substantial  income  that  allows  them  to  frequently  follow  and  invest  in  luxury   fashion,  most  likely  lives  in  an  urban  area  as  a  working  professional     Found  -­‐  Hanging          


Nordstrom: The  History  

In  1901  friends  Carl  Wallin  and  John  Nordstrom  opened  a  small  shoe  store  in   downtown  Seattle,  named  Wallin  &  Nordstrom.  The  company  quickly  expanded   both  in  size  in  merchandise,  from  shoes  to  apparel,  to  downtown  Seattle  and  stores   all  across  the  Pacific  Northwest.      

In 1971,  the  company  was  officially  renamed  to  Nordstrom,  and  after  going  

public the  company  became  the  largest-­‐volume  fashion  specialty  store  on  the  West   Coast.  By  1988,  the  first  East  Coast  store  was  opened  in  Virginia,  and  today  currently   operates  240  stores,  with  117  full-­‐line  stores,  and  119  Nordstrom  Racks.  They  plan   on  opening  their  first  Manhattan  store  by  2018.        

Nordstrom is  consistently  recognized  for  its  high-­‐level  of  customer  service.  

They also  are  frequently  topping  lists  of  “happiest  employees”  at  corporate   companies.      



Nordstrom: The  Experience     Visual  Merchandising  –  Personally,  I  didn’t  find  anything  about  the  Nordstrom   window  displays  very  exciting.  They  seemed  a  little  plain  and  under-­‐styled  for   window  displays.  However,  I  thought  the  in  store  displays  made  a  lot  more  sense.   The  storylines  were  simple,  but  did  a  great  job  of  styling  outfits  that  were  realistic   for  the  customer.         Merchandise  Presentation  –  The  merchandise  was  all  perfectly  in  order,  and  not   cluttered  at  all.  The  merchandise  was  easy  to  navigate,  and  I  thought  they  had  a   really  good  selection,  as  well.       Customer  Service  –  Every  time  I  come  to  Nordstrom’s  I  can  guarantee  the  service   will  be  amazing.  Time,  after  time,  their  sales  associates  are  helpful,  friendly,  and   attentive.  Also  from  previous  personal  experiences  (and  experiences  friends  have   had),  they  are  always  so  easy  when  returning  items.         Store  Maintenance  –  The  store  maintenance  was  great,  everything  was  in  place,   decluttered,  and  organized,  which  made  it  easy  to  find  whatever  I  was  looking  for.   The  dressing  rooms  were  the  least  impressive  of  all  the  stores  that  I  had  visited,   however  they  were  still  very  well  taken  care  of  and  clean.       Overall  Experience  –  Overall,  my  experience  at  Nordstrom  was  really  nice  –  as   always.  Everything  from  the  merchandise  presentation,  to  the  customer  service   really  heightened  my  shopping  experience  and  made  me  eager  to  return.  I  also   walked  away  with  some  new  outfit  ideas  from  their  in  store  displays,  which  I  think   is  really  cool  if  you  can  walk  away  from  a  shopping  experience  feeling  inspired.    



Nordstrom: The  Garment    

Zadig  &  Voltaire  “Virginie”  Floral  Print  Blazer     Garment  Description  –  Lightweight,  mensware  fitted,  floral  blazer,  with  double   pockets,  lapels,  single  button     Garment  Label  –  Large  white  rectangular  tag  with  Zadig  &  Voltaire  in  a  burnt   orange,  swirly  font     Fiber  Content/Care  Instructions  –  Cotton/linen;  dry  clean  only     Country  of  Origin  –France     Suggested  Retail  Price  -­‐  $855.00     Size  Range  Offered  –  2/34,  4/36,  6/38     Styling  –  Trendy     Signature  Design  Element  –  Strong  shoulders  and  menswear  style  mixed  with  a   feminine  pattern     Target  Customer  –  Their  target  customer  is  25+,  working  professional  with  a   significant  disposable  income,  likes  in  an  urban  area     Found:  Hanging        


Barneys New  York:  The  History  

Barney  Pressman  opened  the  first  Barneys  New  York  in  1923,  after  pawning   his  wife’s  engagement  ring.  The  original  store  was  a  500-­‐sqaure  foot  space  on  7th   avenue  in  Manhattan,  and  Barney  sold  discounted  clothing  that  were  either  samples,   from  other  stores  overstock,  or  from  manufacturer  closeouts.  Pressman  also  used   free  parking,  as  well  as  free  alterations  to  draw  customers  in.     In  a  1973  interview,  the  son  of  Barney,  Fred  Pressman,  said  that  he  and  his   father  were  never  “fans”  of  the  discount  store,  thus  with  his  father’s  blessing   decided  to  give  Barneys  a  facelift.  They  traded  low-­‐end  discount  clothing  for  high-­‐ end  luxury  designers,  however  he  decided  to  keep  free  alterations  as  a  tribute  to   what  made  Barneys  famous  to  begin  with.     In  1988,  Barneys  began  opening  stores  outside  of  Manhattan,  the  first  was  in   1990  in  Tokyo;  a  1993  store  in  Beverly  Hills  followed  quickly  after  that.  Today  there   are  11  stores  around  the  US,  and  5  in  Japan.  The  company  also  has  several  outlet   stores  and  CO-­‐OPs  throughout  the  United  States.    


Barneys New  York:  The  Experience     Visual  Merchandising  –  The  visuals  at  Barneys  are  one  of  my  favorites.  Every  story   with  the  clothing  not  only  makes  sense  and  is  effortlessly  cohesive,  but  it  is  also  just   beautiful  to  look  at.  It  seems  like  a  lot  of  time  and  planning  goes  into  merchandising   the  in-­‐store  displays.  I  wasn’t  crazy  about  the  window  displays  when  I  went,  as  they   didn’t  evoke  my  lust  of  their  merchandise  as  much  as  they  usually  do!     Merchandise  Presentation  –  They  merchandise  presentation  here  is  great.  They   do  a  wonderful  job  of  making  you  feel  like  you’re  in  a  boutique  and  not  so  much  in  a   huge  department  store.  Sometimes  is  can  be  a  little  tricky  to  navigate  (there  is  so   much!),  but  everything  is  so  beautiful  to  look  at,  I’d  gladly  welcome  getting  lost.     Customer  Service  –  I’ve  frequented  Barneys  many  times  and  I  usually  have  a  great   experience  with  the  sales  associates  and  brand  representatives.  However,  this  time  I   went  I  wasn’t  particularly  impressed.  It  took  about  20  minutes  of  me  being  in  there   for  someone  to  ask  how  I  was  doing  –  it  was  especially  shocking  that  it  took  that   long  because  it  was  a  Tuesday  afternoon  (not  very  busy)  –  and  when  I  was  finally   spoken  to,  when  I  mentioned  I  didn’t  need  any  help  there  was  a  lot  of  attitude.       Store  Maintenance  –  Like  most  designer  department  stores,  the  store  maintenance   is  impeccable.  Attention  is  paid  to  every  little  detail  to  truly  heighten  the  experience   for  the  customer.  Everything  is  clean,  organized,  straightened,  and  in  place.  Also,   probably  my  favorite  department  store  dressing  rooms.     Overall  Experience  –  Overall  I  had  a  great  experience.  I  was  a  little  disappointed   that  the  customer  service  was  so  off-­‐putting  (especially  because  I’ve  had  such  great   experiences  in  the  past),  however  the  rest  of  my  trip  to  Barneys  New  York  was   really  nice.  There  apparel  has  a  much  more  youthful,  playful  vibe  compared  to  Saks,   which  speaks  to  me  a  lot  more.  Definitely  one  of  my  favorites!      



Barneys New  York:  The  Garment    

Laveer  Striped  Montage  Jacket     Garment  Description  –  White  blazer  with  double  contrasting  black  stripes,  lapels,   open,  padded  shoulders     Garment  Label  –  Medium  sized  black  label  with  LAVEER  in  bold  white  writing,  a   smaller  black  tag  hangs  from  that  with  the  size  of  garment     Fiber  Content/Care  Instructions  –  Cotton  and  flax/dry  clean  only     Country  of  Origin  –  United  States     Suggested  Retail  Price  -­‐  $530     Size  Range  Offered  –  0,  2,  4,  6,  8,  10     Styling  –  Classic     Signature  Design  Element  –  Laveer’s  bold  contrast  stripes     Target  Customer  –  The  ideal  customer  is  someone  21+,  possibly  a  working   professional  with  a  high  disposable  income,  or  someone  interested  in  splurging  on   luxury  quality  staple  garments,  lives  in  an  urban/suburban  area     Found  -­‐  Hanging  


RTW Analysis: Women's Blazers  

Understanding the historical and modern day presence of the women's blazer, as well as the retailers that carry them.