107: On Trend – Collaborations

There’s something so intriguing and amazing about a great designer/company collaboration. It’s completely on trend and of the moment for businesses to partner with well-known celebrities and designers. The idea is still new and each collab provides insight as to what needs to be improved and worked on. There have been collaboration disasters, but let’s start with a partnership done right.

Collaborations Done Right:

Derek Lam for DesigNation at Kohl’s

DerekLam/Kohls Collab

Photo Credit

Kohl’s has always been the perfect for celebrity collections, a favorite of mine is the LC Lauren Conrad collection, but I love seeing them work with a well-known designer even more. I’m an avid Kohl’s shopper and huge fan of Derek Lam so I may be a little biased on this one, but this being the second collaboration between the two I think they’re on to something. My work experience as a retail buyer has engrained a certain standard for any purchase I make for myself as well. I really look for quality and value, since I see so much of product every day I’ve been able to analyze how much something is worth much more quickly. The Rio collection seems to be spot on at least in my mind; the design, quality and pricing are something I can definitely get on board with. I also love the commercials for the collection, the Rio inspiration comes to life and is truly relatable to the product. The fun bright colors and airy materials are perfect for spring and summer.


The collection is also a favorite of the stars as seen on InStyle. Not sure I could pull off the denim dress as well as Kate Bosworth, but I love the addition of that gold belt.

Favorite Fashion Finds:


Striped Sheath Dress $52.50


Charmeuse Top $36

Pieced Colorblock A-Line Skirt $40.50


Effortless Blend Look $30/$40.50


Pieced Crop Pants $40.50

Solid Bomber Jacket $52.50

Triangle Bikini Top $33

Prabal Gurung & Target


1. Just how adorable is he? 2. Prabal obviously knows this is going to be a hit.

Target definitely learned from their mistakes on the Neiman Marcus collaboration [discussed below] when they came back with a more focused and well priced collection in partnership with designer Prabal Gurung. According to Business Insider, “the success of Gurung’s line should restore the fashion industry’s faith in designer collaborations.” Prabal Gurung is another favorite designer of mine, and I seriously could not get to the store quick enough to buy items I wanted from his collection. I absolutely loved the commercials before the launch and the super bright, fun patterns were amazing. This was something much more exciting than the previous collaboration with Neiman Marcus and much better on pricing. Target stuck to what the designer knows best instead of trying to make Gurung inspire new products not typically created in his lines. There are still some products available that didn’t do as well in the stores, but overall I think Target saved themselves from their disastrous first collab and put faith back in to the customers, myself included. [For more on the Target/Neiman Marcus downfall collaboration read on below.]

Favorite Fashion Looks:

Target_prabal_gurung_look25I’m still upset I didn’t get to the stores quick enough for these strappy neon printed heels.




Honestly, going back through all of these still makes me mad that the collection got picked over so quickly and I didn’t get to buy anything. Prabal, if you read this please do another collaboration ASAP.

Collaboration Downfall: Neiman Marcus & Target Holiday Collection


Photo Credit: SheFinds

The first mainstream collaboration with the biggest hype was the Neiman Marcus & Target holiday collection. It had the potential to be so great, but was executed so poorly. As a regular Target shopper, I wasn’t too excited about any of the products from the collection and definitely was even less excited about the high price points. Target did not identify their customers well enough to price the products and the random array of products offered were just, well, strange. I’m not sure I know any Target shopper that would pay over $50 for an Oscar de la Renta dog bowl. I understand it was a holiday gift collection, but I think it should have been focused on one product category with sharp pricing to appeal to Target shoppers. The lack of appeal and overarching prices are reasons why Target was trying desperately to mark the products down [even months later] and had an overall poor sell thru.

Collaboration to Come: Macklemore/Ryan Lewis & Nordstrom Bridal

What are your thoughts on these collaborations? Sound off in the comments below!

XO Victoria


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