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Bloor-Yorkville Scene

AlbertC

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The Gap are closing their 3-storey Toronto flagship store at Bay & Bloor at the end of January 2021. They've been located there since November of 1999.

 

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Richard White

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AlbertC

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Luxury Multi-Brand Retailer ‘The Webster’ to Open 1st Canadian Store in Toronto’s Yorkville Neighbourhood

December 15, 2020

Miami-based multi-brand luxury retailer The Webster will open its first Canadian storefront in July of 2021 in Toronto’s affluent Yorkville neighbourhood. The Webster is expected to disrupt luxury retailing in the city with an innovate strategy that includes one-on-one clienteling and a selection of luxury goods that in some instances are not sold elsewhere.

The Webster’s Toronto store will span about 6,500 square feet in a heritage building at 121 Scollard Street near the corner of Hazelton Avenue. The building was built in 1884 by Leeds Sheppard and it will be preserved and designed by Stéphane Parmentier, a Parisian interior designer who is also the creative director of The Webster Home vertical.

The Scollard Street store will be The Webster’s eighth retail store and the brand’s first outside of the United States.

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The Webster is expected to take some market share from retailers such as Holt Renfrew and Saks Fifth Avenue — some of the same brands are carried at those stores, with The Webster boasting a unique assortment not found elsewhere. Founder Laure Heriard Dubreuil for years developed relationships with key brands and obtains some merchandise via consignment. Prior to founding The Webster, Ms. Heriard Dubreuil lived in Paris and worked as a top merchandiser for Balenciaga and Yves Saint Laurent.

More than 100 of the industry’s leading fashion designers are available at The Webster stores including ready-to-wear for women, men, and kids. Brands include Alexander Wang, Amiri, Amina Muaddi, Balenciaga, Bottega Veneta, Burberry, Celine, Chanel, Chloé, Dior, Dries Van Noten, Fendi, Fear of God, Givenchy, Gucci, Heron Preston, Jacquemus, Khaite, LaQuan Smith, Loewe, Marine Serre, Off-White, Paco Rabanne, Palm Angels, Raf Simons, Rhude, Saint Laurent, and The Row among others. A private label brand called LHD, designed by the founder herself, adds an extra element of uniqueness with bold silhouettes and playful prints.

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This week the 121 Scollard Street building was under tarp and construction could be heard within. An expansion at the back of the building could house a restaurant space according to one source, with the front of the building dedicated to fashion. It’s unclear what colour The Webster’s Toronto building will be — the retailer’s South Beach flagship and Beverly Centre locations both feature pink facades. One source said that the Toronto store could be painted gold.


Projected rendering of the store, although the final colour may be different. The article mentions it could be painted gold.

webs.jpg



Some photos from a couple months ago.

scollard.jpg
scollard2.jpg
 
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AlbertC

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pw20

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Intermix at 130 Bloor St W will be closing next month. The Gap-owned multi-brand retailer has been located there since Sept 2011.


Gap Inc has vacated thousands of square feet on bloor street in the last year (Gap, Banana, Intermix). Truly wild.
 

Richard White

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Gap Inc has vacated thousands of square feet on bloor street in the last year (Gap, Banana, Intermix). Truly wild.

That's because they are very much an iconic staple from the 90s. Their style is overpriced now compared to back in the day.

I once bought a dress shirt from there and it set me back 70 dollars. I am all for nostalgia but they are pricing themselves out of business,
 

AlbertC

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I remember being a kid in the 90's and shopping for clothes with my folks at the Eaton Centre, back then for a while Gap and Old Navy were still considered the "cool" stores. But the wave of fast fashion brands like American Eagle, Hollister, Abercrombie, H&M, Zara, Forever 21, Aeropostale, Uniqlo, etc gradually emerged in the market. While the Gap kept getting buried behind and quickly became forgotten.
 

Richard White

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I remember being a kid in the 90's and shopping for clothes with my folks at the Eaton Centre, back then for a while Gap and Old Navy were still considered the "cool" stores. But the wave of fast fashion brands like American Eagle, Hollister, Abercrombie, H&M, Zara, Forever 21, Aeropostale, Uniqlo, etc gradually emerged in the market. While the Gap kept getting buried behind and quickly became forgotten.

The Gap is simply overpriced now for what you get. $100+ for a pair of jeans, $70+ for a dress shirt.

They have nice clothes BUT they are pricing themselves out of existance sort of like Jean Machine did.
 

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They often had 40% off sales though. I bought three jeans for about $45 each at The Gap last year.
 

AlbertC

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A lot of these brands rely too much on sales/discounts to move merchandise. I still get emails bi-weekly from Abercrombie for deals after deals throughout the year, even when there's no festivity happening. They'll do markdowns where you can get reasonable T-shirts for around $12, if you do the in-store pickup option. I think the emergence of H&M and Zara over a decade ago, and Uniqlo more recently, has overtaken the market for fast fashion and relegated the popularity of everyone else before them.
 

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A lot of these brands rely too much on sales/discounts to move merchandise. I still get emails bi-weekly from Abercrombie for deals after deals throughout the year, even when there's no festivity happening. They'll do markdowns where you can get reasonable T-shirts for around $12, if you do the in-store pickup option. I think the emergence of H&M and Zara over a decade ago, and Uniqlo more recently, has overtaken the market for fast fashion and relegated the popularity of everyone else before them.
I don't think it's relegated their popularity as much as societal changes have. Fast fashion's often cheaper, and with a stagnant middle class that puts more emphasis on clothing expenditures. In addition, generations grow up, and the places still doing well are the places that seem to target a much wider age range or more conservative styles. The GAP offers a wider/blander range, but their prices aren't as pandemic-friendly as others. I think of places like Randy River for an idea of how failing to grow older with your clientele leaves you in the dust (if Guy Fieri isn't your only client).
 

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