Target Collaborates With Celebrity Stylist Kate Young
Following Prabal Gurung’s previously revealed collection, launching on Feb. 10, Target plans to unveil a line of semiformal and special-occasion dresses designed by celebrity stylist Kate Young. This special collaboration is set to launch on April 14 at all of its stores and target.com.
Following Gurung, Young is next in a long line of established designers who have collaborated with Target in the past. Alexander McQueen and Anna Sui taking inspiration from their respective muses was the basis for the Designer Collaborations series.
“Kate is a nontraditional partner for us,” said Trish Adams, senior vice president of apparel and accessories at Target. “This is the first time we’ve worked with a stylist. It’s interesting [to work] with someone that may not have formal training. It’s the first time a limited-time collection has been so focused. We always wanted to do a line of semiformal and special occasion dresses. Here’s someone that creates jaw-dropping moments.”
Trying new things has never been an issue for the Minneapolis-based retailer. However, Target’s joint holiday collection with Neiman Marcus featuring collaborations with 24 high-end designers was met with much criticism by retail analysts. A spokesperson for Target responded saying, “We’re incredibly proud of the amount of innovation and creativity that was poured into that program.”
“Kate’s collection follows the model we used with Jason Wu and Prabal Gurung,” Adams said. “We have one vendor that works with all these [designer] collaborations. Our in-house design team tends to focus on our own brands. In the case of Target + Liberty of London, we were given archival access and our teams designed the products and applied the prints. With Missoni, because the line was so extensive, with over 400-plus items, our team was involved. But not in Young’s case.”
Kate Young for Target ranges in price from $29.99 to $89.99 for apparel and $14.99 to $49.99 for jewelry, handbags and shoes, which will be available online only.
“There’s a little bit of magic in evening,” Young said in an interview. “You put an outfit on in the hope of having a good time. It’s not like being correct or formal. It’s about the magic that entails.”
Young and Target have a long standing history spanning more than a decade. She styled the Verticle Fashion Show and the Jason Wu for Target Lookbook. Consulting for designers such as Wu taught her “a lot about design and how dresses are made.” While her claim to fame may the work she has done with designers for their runway shows, she has quickly made a name for herself as a celebrity stylist. “A lot of my clients wear Target,” she said. “Natalie [Portman] wore a lot of the pieces from Rodarte and both Michelle Williams and Natalie wore a lot of Jason Wu for Target.”
The Kate Young marketing program planned by Target has raised the innovation bar in terms of launch events. “We’re in the midst of pulling that together,” the spokesman said. He continued to add that there will be an “incredibly talented, famous photographer and director. It’s step and repeat. It’s flashing bulbs, paparazzi.”
Adams said, “We’ll see what the consumer response is and perhaps explore the opportunity to do formalwear on a regular basis.”