La Double J arrives in New York for dual holiday events
"All New Yorkers need is more play. New York has so much stress, anxiety, and fear," said Milan-based American J.J. Martin of La Double J.
"Movement helps. Color has an energetic frequency – it's not by chance I am crazy about color. To bring this mood to a disco tonight, where people are dancing and playing, is about raising that vibration," she continued, adding she'd rather not entertain in a stiff environment with everyone just standing with drinks in hand.
On Tuesday night, Martin's goal was reached with the La Double J holiday dance party celebrating her resort 2023 collection in Lower Manhattan. On Thursday, she brought the color and pattern the brand is known for to New York's Italian institution, Caffe Roma.
The rain didn't stop Martin's legions of New York friends, press, and influencers from stepping out for cocktails and dancing at Kind Regards—a Lower East Side subterranean nightclub with a kitsch retro feel—who loosened up to the mostly remixed disco classics spun by Isabella Massenet, daughter of Net-a-Porter founder, Natalie Massenet.
Hosted by downtown It-girls -- artist Brianna Lance and model Renata Zandonadi Quaglia -- guests, such as Olivia Palermo, Jessica Wang, Mary Leest, Zoe Lister-Jones, Jenny Walton, Brian Atwood, Natalie Massenet, Erik Torstensson, Indre Rockefeller, Marina Larroude, and Coco Bassey sipped champagne from cups and nibbled hearty hors d'oeuvre primarily decked out in the brands colorful and sparkly creations boogied and posed for holiday-themed photos.
It was the mood the designer told FashionNetwork.com her clothes are meant to evoke.
"These happy clothes can put you into a high-vibration state. There are many ways a human being can get into it. I talk to customers about ways to raise vibrations and expand their consciousness," she explained, adding, "It's a no-brainer fashion business; it's not conceptual or hard to understand. It's print and color mood-boosting clothing, and the metaphysical and spiritual aesthetic comes through in the clothes."
While the designers felt compelled to shower New York with this uplifting vibe, the city and the U.S. have been generally receptive since day one.
"America is our top market since the beginning and New York the top city, followed by LA," said the journalist-turned-designer, citing Bergdorf Goodman, Kirna Zabete, and The Webster as early retail champions. "We really got going in 2020 with Saks, strategically placed in top performing doors. We are more DTC-focused, so we open wholesale accounts smartly to avoid leftover merchandise that the retailer might mark down because we don't go on sale."
The brand has its sights set on a New York real estate location where Martin says her democratically priced, sized, and shaped luxury dresses and other La Double J goods can have a home.
"As soon as I find the space, we are ready," she continued, pondering uptown or downtown. Her team, which includes her ex-husband Andrea Cicolli is already on the case.
"When you see the store in Milan, the whole concept comes together; the 100 percent 'Made in Italy' ready-to-wear, the homeware, and the goddess cave where we have five representations of the 'Divine Mother' and do yoga, meditations, and energy healings."
Expect to see more of the spiritually-focused events in the future space. "Last time I came to NYC, I did a breathwork class at Bergdorf Goodman on their top floor. What I am trying to do is not regular fashion events."
Her homeware line has a similar uplifting effect with its colorful patterns. Martin will continue a hospitality-focused "takeover" program in New York that began with the new Villa Passalacqua on Lake Como, where the De Santis family collaborated with La Double J for the pool area, tennis, and bowls courts. The brand also did temporary pop-ups at Risoelatte in Milan and Café Maisie in Paris.
Staying true to its Italian roots, the brand is partnering with Caffe Roma, established in 1891 in New York's Little Italy, for the next two months on a takeover.
"We decorated everything down to the cookie boxes, pastry shelves, tabletops, cushions, and outdoor seating in our iconic cherry and Lilium prints. Its 'pattern-tastic!' The café is totally old school and like you find in Milan, the same place for decades. It's not the chicest place in town but the most authentic," she effused.
And the kinda place where the good vibrations flow.
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