Carven designer Guillaume Henry threw a “construction” party on Thursday night at his soon-to-be-opened boutique on Mercer Street in SoHo. The theme was construction because, well, he and his team are still constructing the space, which will likely open in the next few weeks. Even unfinished, the store didn’t look half bad — the marble finishings were beautiful, even if they were protected from the still-drying paint by plastic coverings.
It helps that Henry’s pastel-colored Fall 2013 collection was already on display, including the periwinkle wrap skirt and that pink coat. “It’s totally sold out in Europe, but it will be in stock here,” the designer told Fashionista of the double-breasted item. “I wanted to create something super-warm, but in a fresh color — I’m super happy and proud that it’s done so well.”
Henry has been on a world tour of sorts. Last week, he visited both Shanghai and London for store openings. Carven now has 16 stores worldwide, predominantly in Asia. Mercer Street is the brand’s first U.S. boutique. And while the focus of his trip was certainly the store opening — even if it has been a little bit delayed in the name of perfection — Henry has had quite the week. On Tuesday, he hosted a fancy dinner at La Lunchonette for a small group of It girls and insiders, including Ciara and Leandra Medine. Wednesday night, he sat front row at the Victoria’s Secret runway show. “I loved it! It was pure entertainment,” Henry said of the extravaganza. “I discovered that singer, Leo World or something like that. I would never be able to tell you his name but I think his song was so beautiful.” (For the record, the group’s name is A Great Big World, and yeah, I had to Google that because I had never heard of it either.)
What’s nice about Henry is that he’s so excited about everything. He loves New York. He loves designing. He particularly loves designing for a storied fashion house like Carven. One subject he’s a tad more reserved about though is his status as a fashion-industry heartthrob. With his slightly graying schoolboy hair and piercing slate eyes, Henry is undeniably dreamy. And every piece written about him — and every cocktail conversation around him — says it. How does that make him feel? “I don’t know! What I love about my work is designing. I’m not a show-off guy, I don’t go to a lot of parties and things like that,” he says. “So I don’t know what the people are thinking about me, and frankly speaking, I do not care. But when you meet people you have to play nice, because as designers it’s fantastic to have people looking at us.” Perfect answer. Just like Henry. And his clothes.
Carven will open at 83 Mercer Street in the coming weeks.