Chiara Ferragni Brings Sparkle to The Grove
The social influencer turned shoe designer launched her first stand-alone U.S. pop-up store in L.A.
Though her eponymous brand, which is currently stocked at Saks Fifth Avenue, Shopbop, Farfetch and more, has popped up in department stores before, the new shop at The Grove marks the Italian fashion influencer known as The Blonde Salad's first-ever stand-alone U.S. store.
"I just love L.A.," Ferragni told Pret-a-Reporter of why she chose the city for her introduction to the world of brick-and-mortar retail. "I actually live here now, and I love it so much, especially The Grove."
The Chiara Ferragni retail space is located at the heart of the shopping center, near the stage and just across from Santa's village, in the same pop-up space that recently hosted Obsessee's "IRL" shop. "During Christmastime, it's so magical," added Ferragni, whose storefront will be open through the holiday season (Nov. 19 through Jan. 2.). "My family always comes here to visit for Christmas, and last year they were like, 'Oh, my God, Chiara, you have to open a store here, it would be a dream!' Then we started working on it, and it actually happened. It’s insane!"
Pieces from the designer's fall 2016 collection, as well as a preview of six styles from her spring collection — currently exclusive to the pop-up — will be available for purchase inside the sparkly space. Shop espadrilles and glittery loafer slides embellished with her signature winking-eye motif, as well as snow boots to match the glitter-covered snowboard perched at the entrance.
"I’m obsessed with music, and David Bowie is my favorite, so we had to have this music-inspired collection, too," added Ferragni of the pair of white leather slip-ons featuring the eye with Bowie's Ziggy Stardust lightning bolt blazing through it.
A capsule collection of oversized tees and sweaters, as well as backpacks bearing the kitschy blue eye, are also available in a variety of colors and, of course, sparkles. "I think when you wear Chiara Ferragni shoes, you really want that to be the center of your look," she said of the collection's healthy dose of glitter. "I love that it’s a pop and that it’s fun, but that it’s also easy to wear." Prices range from $40 for a phone case to $112 for a choker to $365 for slip-on shoes.
Moving forward, the 29-year-old plans to open a permanent store in Milan in 2017, hopefully followed by permanent outposts in New York and L.A.
When asked if she's concerned about the current tumultuous political climate affecting her plans — both from the standpoint of being an immigrant, as well as a business woman — she didn't seem too worried. "I have a green card, and even though I am living half here and half in Europe, this is my home base. It’s great to be a European here, I feel very welcome," she said. "Hopefully everything stays kind of the same. But I’m excited. I feel like, for business purposes, there is so much for me to do here in the U.S."