Coach is one of those timeless brands that will forever be relevant in the fashion world and a global leader in premium handbags and accessories. But like many brands, Coach has had its ups and downs as the brand has gone in and out of fashion. However, with numerous well thought out strategies and an incredible design team, Coach has successfully rebranded itself throughout the past years. A consensus has been reached and I’m here to tell you that it’s official…Coach is cool again!
I recently had the pleasure of attending Coach’s Recreate The Runway Event at their flagship store on 5th Avenue. Let me start off by telling you about this store…it’s incredible! If you haven’t had a chance to walk inside, make sure to do so next time you pass by. I guarantee that you will not be disappointed in the slightest. The largest Coach house in the world opened its doors in November 2016 in one of the most coveted locations in Manhattan. As you walk into the store you are greeted with an overhead conveyer belt that slowly moves across the entryway, showcasing items from the latest collection.
You then come face-to-face with a T-Rex that is designed using over 400 leather Coach bags. “Rexy”, designed by Billie Achilleos, is Coach’s mascot but is on the verge of becoming Coach’s newest logo. This particular store features both men’s and women’s lifestyle floors that include the Coach 1941 ready-to-wear collections as well as leather goods and accessories. The Coach House on 5th Avenue offers the largest assortment of customizations; it’s a very fun and interactive store.
On the second floor, there is a workshop station where customers can pick from three classic Coach bags and embellish and monogram them to their liking. I personally love the Made-To-Order workshop located on the third floor. This is where you meet with a Coach stylist and design your own Rogue bag, choosing everything from size, color and stitching to hardware, exotics and leather of the exterior/interior. The best part about this is the fact that there are no two bags alike; your bag is completely customized by you. And by the way, the Rogue bag is absolutely fabulous and the size is perfect for carrying all your necessities throughout the day but also chic enough to wear to dinner.
After getting a tour around the store, I had the pleasure of meeting Izabela Targosz, one of the head designers on the Coach team. It was a very intimate event where I was able to learn about the history of Coach, their latest collection and the way in which they are quickly evolving to become one of the top modern luxury brands. Stuart Vevers, the creative director of Coach, joined the brand in 2013 where he began reinventing Coach with a modern view while staying true to Coach’s roots in leather craftsmanship. It is a struggle to compete in todays fast-fashion world but Stuart Vevers and the rest of the Coach design team were quick to create a new identity for the brand.
Coach’s first ready-to-wear collection was presented in 2014, which turned out to be very successful. In 2015, Vevers released the Coach 1941 ready-to-wear collection; a nod to the year the company was founded. The outerwear collection from this line became even more coveted than the handbags and accessories. During the last few years, Coach has strategically collaborated with other brands such as Opening Ceremony and Rodarte in order to shift the public’s perception of the brand.
Coach has also partnered with some of the most well known influencers, making them the face of their campaigns. Sasha Lane starred in the Rodarte collaboration while Emma Roberts was very influential in promoting the latest collection of Coach watches. Coach also partnered with the person who has the most Instagram followers in the world; Selena Gomez. The Coach x Selena Gomez collection was recently launched, featuring limited edition bags and leather accessories. The designs are functional and made for today’s modern woman without sacrificing style.
The current ready-to-wear collection is stunning and pays homage to retro-1950’s Americana. The collection is nostalgic and features trimmings that remind us of authentic American style while still evoking young energy. Rich embellishments, traditional Western wear and vintage paint-by-number kits were the inspiration for Coach’s latest collection. So what’s in store next for Coach? Well a rebranding to the name Tapestry for one. We will have to wait the rest but based on their latest collection, it’s safe to say they are going to be cooler than ever. Stay tuned because I just got word that there is a fabulous collaboration starting in 2018…I wonder who it is?!? Don’t worry; I’ll keep you posted.