Comme des Garçons designer Rei Kawakubo is gradually rolling out her temporary label, Black, around the world. Black in-store boutiques have already opened in two Tokyo department stores, and shoppers are insatiable: Black sales are already 50 percent higher than expected. The line sort of falls somewhere in between the Comme des Garçons’ H&M diffusion line, and the regular Comme line. Prices range from about $84 to $147 for tees and about $350 to $623 for jackets — about half the price of the main Comme line. The Black collection includes some of the label’s best-selling silhouettes in popular fabrics and the label’s signature prints, like polka dots, gingham, and checkerboard.
A freestanding Black store will open in New York on June 22 (the location has not yet been announced). A two-week Black pop-up shop-in-shop will also open in Barneys. But how long will Black stick around? That’s the best part: For as long as we need it. Many pop-ups only last a couple of weeks to a month, but (barring a miracle) not Black! “Rei said she wanted [Black] to last as long as the recession lasts,” the CEO of Comme des Garçons told WWD. “It’s turning morosity into positivity. We can’t just sit there and cry.” He’s right. We have to shop. At Black. The marketing and retail strategies behind this could not be more genius or forward-thinking. Did we mention new styles are rolling out every six weeks? And the demand for Black is so fervent they might launch men’s styles as well? We already feel our money disappearing. The Summer of Black is upon us! And it feels so good.