You probably know online luxury retailer Matchesfashion.com for its impressively edited seasonal buy that mixes the best of both established and emerging designers. But what you might not know is that it also has a handful of brick-and-mortar locations — or "town houses" as it calls them — in the U.K. (where it's based). Since the U.S. is Matches' second-biggest market outside of the U.K. (and one of its fastest-growing), the retailer decided to set up shop in New York City for one weekend only, and beginning on Friday, consumers are welcome to preview its edit of the pre-fall and fall 2016 collections at the WOM Townhouse on Lafayette Street. (Conveniently located on the same block as fashion blogger-favorite lunch spot Jack's Wife Freda.)
While this is the first time the retailer has hosted an open-to-the-public experience stateside, it's previously popped up in Dubai, Hong Kong, Sydney and Melbourne. Every town house setup is different, but they all have the same goal: to bring a bit of the Matches DNA and adapt it to each city. The New York town house in Soho, with its high ceilings, exposed brick, outdoor courtyard and indoor pool, somehow feels both old-school and modern, and intimate despite its large scale. It's more like an installation than a straight-up store, which was one of the retailer's main goals.
In addition to checking out the range of designer clothing and accessories — which shoppers will be able to order via iPads scattered around the town house — Matches has curated a number of "studios" that highlight popular product categories: vacation, lifestyle and activewear. There's also a full schedule of programming, including a roundtable with Leandra Medine and Sander Lak of buzzy new label Sies Marjan on Friday, a conversation with menswear expert Eugene Tong on Saturday and a brunch with art auction site Paddle8 on Sunday. These tastemakers were chosen for their common passion for discovering newness and championing up-and-coming talent — something that Matches prides itself on as well.
The retailer sees this U.S. pop-up as just the beginning of its stateside tour: Dallas is up next on the list, followed by San Francisco and Los Angeles in May. Above all, Matches hopes to build relationships with (and get feedback from) both new and existing customers along the way, so if you're one of the site's frequent shoppers, we highly suggest you stop by the town house over the next few days.