Houston Galleria’s Nine West store was the setting for one of Houston’s hottest events, in affiliation with THE In Style Magazine. The event celebrated Nine West’s collaboration with In Style Accessories Editor- Leah Karp.
I was able to catch up with Leah and Nine West’s Erika Szychowski, who gave me some insight into the collaboration. The concept came to play during a dinner in Paris between Richard Dixson of The Jones Group (parent company to Nine West) and Ariel Foxman of InStyle Magazine. Ariel wanted to come up with a plan that would take a one-dimensional brand (InStyle) and create it into something that is three-dimensional and beyond where all the other publications were going (digital, social media, etc.); how to beat them, get faster and be nimble. They both concluded that instead of just picking a product, they’d DESIGN a product! Thus, the collaboration with Nine West was born. The small capsule collection was launched in the September 2013 issue and was sold in sixteen stores. The collection was tested by the consumers while Nine West and InStyle listened and learned. “We want to be where our consumer is and make sure we are listening to her, learning from her and growing from that. We have such a marriage between our consumers that this product is what they are asking us for,” Szychowski stated.
The limited-edition collaboration consists of several styles of shoes in chic and edgy silhouettes that are available in select bold colors, as well as clutches and cuffs. Leah’s inspiration for the collection was essentially every woman’s closet. The idea was to have the major key shoe silhouettes, clutches and cuffs that could be taken from day to night and able to be dressed up or down. InStyle also wanted to bring their brand, “Shop Like an Editor,” which was in the magazine every month, to the consumer (because they literally are shopping an editor’s closet).
A DJ spun tunes while guests mingled, shopped and partook in the sweeping candy bar and light bites. There were also giveaways throughout the evening. I was actually one of the lucky winners and I chose the Gamin D’Orsay heel in red. I did have to go down in size as the shoes ran a full size too big. I’m also eyeing the Aila and the Izzy. The collection’s price points varies from $79 for footwear to $129 for a clutch. For Fall, expect to see more jewelry, bag shapes and of course- shoes!
“It’s sort of a dream come true for me to have the chance to do this and to partner with Nine West.” – Leah Karp