Topshop Spring 2010 - Photo: Fashion Gone Rogue
The commenters had it right - Topshop is coming to New Zealand and will officially open its doors inside The Department Store this April. Following the example of concept stores Opening Ceremony in New York and Incu in Sydney, The Department Store will host Topshop's first ever New Zealand retail space in the former Michael Lett Gallery spot alongside Stephen Marr (upstairs on the third floor). A selection of Topshop's brands, including Topshop mainline, Unique and Kate Moss for Topshop will be stocked.
According to the press release, Topshop "hand-pick[ed]" The Department Store as their first foray into the New Zealand market, with Senior Buyer and Wholesale Manager Rachel Proud stating that, "The Department Store is a premium destination for us." And don't worry, they'll be there a while, the relationship term is indefinite.
Sources tell me Karen Walker herself flew to London to meet with Topshop representatives and buy the collection for The Department Store. In her words, "We're pretty excited, its one of the best brands out there, and one of the most exciting fashion stories ever."
Topshop coming to New Zealand is pretty big news for the local industry. It's the first time anything like this has ever been available in New Zealand (not including online buying), and hopefully marks a shift in world consciousness that despite our small stature, we're still a relevant market for massive companies to target (I hope you're listening, Uniqlo). But let's face it. If it wasn't for a group of like-minded individuals coming together and creating a retail environment like The Department Store, we probably wouldn't have gotten it at all.
Although the price-point will presumably be higher than the fast fashion we're used to in this country (Glassons, Hallensteins et al), I've been assured that there will be a full price range of products - from entry-level accessories (around $NZD30 for a pair of gloves) all the way up to the higher end pieces like real leather jackets (upwards of $NZD300). Plus, the stock offerings and turnover will be insane. Topshop does everything - from shoes to hats - and every month a new shipment will arrive from the UK bearing brand new product.
I'd like to say thank you to The Department Store for doing their bit to put New Zealand fashion and retail on the world map. First the Monocle Magazine nod, and now this.
No word yet on whether Topman is being included in the mix, but here's hoping.
UPDATE: Topman is coming later in the year, according to Karen Walker.
UPDATE 2: Sources say there's a high possibility that we'll see a Nike pop-up inside The Department Store sometime in the near future. I'd guess it'll go in the former Flotsam and Jetsam space between Karen Walker and The Tea Room on the ground floor.
I LIKE YOU!