NEW YORK Many companies may be reigning in event spending, but French fashion house Louis Vuitton is going all out for the launch of its new Stephen Sprouse collection. Scheduled for tomorrow, the line's New York debut involves a bold marketing effort for the SoHo store and three events. According to WWD, the company is planning to honor the late fashion designer and artist by covering the facade of its boutique on Greene Street with vinyl and tagging the surface with spray paint. As an additional tribute, the window will feature a large neon light installation of Sprouse's iconic rose pattern.
The night of the launch starts with a cocktail reception at the store, includes another event at the Wooster Street Gallery, and ends with a concert at the Bowery Ballroom. The latter will include a performance by Debbie Harry (who hit the stage last month for the opening of SoHo's Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Annex) and music from DJ Jus Ske.
In other fashion news, the rag trade still seems to be suffering from sluggish retail sales as more designers pull out of hosting runway shows during Fashion Week. Monique Lhuillier and Naeem Khan are the latest additions to a list of fashion houses who have downsized to a presentation format; others include Vera Wang, J.Mendel, DKNY, Betsey Johnson, and Carmen Marc Valvo. Yesterday, PR representative Paul Wilmot confirmed Lhuillier's and Khan's decision for New York magazine, but stated the change was not a budget-conscious move.