Tired of paying markup on haute couture and fancy designers when it comes to getting the latest fashions? If the man behind Restoration Hardware has his way, high ticket items with unnecessary markups may be a thing of the past.
In what could be the best news of the year, the chairman and CEO of RH, Gary Friedman, is thinking of bringing his clean and minimalist interior decorating lines to the world of wearable fashion. And much like he’s been known to slash prices on bloated bottom lines in the world of beautiful home furnishings, he’s looking to do the same to clothing.
In an interview with WWD, Friedman revealed that he’s in a unique position where he only needs to make a 15 per cent operating margin, whereas most luxury brands are looking at somewhere between 25 to 30 per cent. That would explain why he’s able to mark down his items a little more reasonably (if you consider nearly $4500 for an antique armoire reasonable) than the competition.
Sadly, an official launch has yet to be announced, but this could also be the start of a complete shopping experience unlike any other. The entire thing would be structured on RH Atelier (an apparel brand that RH acquired two years ago), and feature everything luxury. Think accessories, footwear, jewelry and apparel.
“We’re building these amazing [stores],” Friedman told WWD. “You could go into a bedroom and the armoire would have clothes in it — and you can buy them. It would be done in a voyeuristic way, almost like you’re in someone’s beautiful home.”
Stalker tendencies aside, we’re down. Especially since the CEO claims his number one inspiration is none other than Ralph Lauren himself, who Friedman studies and is now apparently emulating. If anyone knows about complete branding, it would be him.