Candid Intimates to launch store AND collections
We get really excited at the TLJ Studios when we hear about a new retail store or online retail site opening. It’s a good sign that our economy really is getting better.
On a good day, we’ll ALSO hear about a new designer or manufacturer bringing their collection to the masses.
So, you can imagine how excited we are to bring you the news that there’s a new lingerie line called Candid Intimates that’s ALSO opening up their own retail store!
We sat down and interviewed April Andrada, product designer for Candid about their upcoming store opening and collection launch.
TLJ: April, tell me a little bit about the Candid Intimates store concept? What is the official open date?
April: The concept is bigger than “the store.” Our idea is to design, manufacture and sell lingerie, loungewear and accessories so women and girls can live fashionably and comfortably.
“Our core brand value is authenticity. That means that we are here to support women and girls at being their very best, most-authentic selves every day, not to create some unachievable fashion fantasy,” – April Andrada
Our garments are artisan-designed, hand-patterned and well made, all of high-quality materials. They are also very, very lovely and unique.
Also, there will be several distinct brands under one roof:
Candid Intimates: An aspirational line for women
Cotton Candy Intimates: A fashion-forward line for girls and young women
Candid Atelier—Coming Soon:An artisan line of lingerie offering a very wide range of band and cup sizes, from 30A–38G.
Our official open day is January 28, 2011.
TLJ: How many people are involved with the store and what are their roles?
April: There is a core group of people, which seems to be expanding daily.
Key personnel include:
Robin Levitt, President
Asher Alfasi, Finance and Construction
April Andrada, Product Design
Bok Goodall, Market Strategy and Product Design
Richard Levitt, Brand Strategy and Communications Design
Mollyrose Weintraub, Retail Store Director
Shirley Vasquez, Product Design
Leslie Kendall, Pattern Maker
TLJ: What was the main inspiration to start the store?
April: Robin had a deep desire to create lovely, accessible fashions while exercising her 20-plus years of experience as a retail executive.
TLJ: You are opening at the Glendale Galleria. What was the driving force to open at that mall-based location versus a stand-alone boutique?
April: Traffic, location and retail complement of stores. Robin has managed several stores over the years at this center, which have shown very solid performance. It was always her choice location for launching the brand. Apple opened their first store at the Glendale Galleria—we don’t mind following in their footsteps.
TLJ: What were some of the biggest obstacles in getting the store to this stage of development?
April: We are designing and manufacturing our own product, and creating our own retail environment. That’s incredibly ambitious, especially when you consider that we started from an absolute blank sheet of paper. So in spite of deep experience, talent and very hard work, the biggest obstacle is the coordination of so many moving parts. We are creating a brand that will inspire our customers and create lasting relationships.
“We are creating a brand that will inspire our customers and create lasting relationships,” – April Andrada
TLJ: From looking at your images on Facebook, everyone on your team seems to be working on every aspect of the store from signage to stock. What’s the relationship like between everyone at the store?
April: Robin is one of the most inspirational managers any of us has ever worked with. People have come out in force to help support her vision.
Associates she hired years ago—as salespeople, stockroom workers, and managers at various retailers—all want to work with her again. “How can we help?” “What can we do?” “Put me to work!” We are a small, feverishly passionate group that all want to see this brand succeed because we cherish our relationships and the team being created.
TLJ: How long has it taken to get to the point of having the grand opening?
April: About two years.
TLJ: What is your strategy for getting the word out that not only have you opened, but that customers should come to you for their lingerie needs?
April: Right now, we’re pursuing a social media and viral strategy. The interest is amazing, and the energy around the opening is very exciting. Word of mouth is working for us.
TLJ: Are there any retail stores (lingerie and non-lingerie) that you would say you looked to for inspiration?
April: Robin finds inspiration from places and cultures around the world as well as right here at home. She also has worked for some of the world’s top brands. It all informs her vision for how to do things right: how to treat the customer; how to manage the store; and how to excite and motivate employees. Candid Intimates is the result of all her experience, plus her love for wonderful fashion and her magnetic personality.
TLJ: How would you describe the overall “feel” or “vibe” of the store?
April: It’s a cross between a 1920’s French boudoir and an ultra-modern shopping aesthetic.
TLJ: What would you say is the biggest attraction?
April: The beautiful lingerie and our focus on great fit.
TLJ: What is the size of your store?
April: 1,800 square feet
TLJ: Will you offer other lingerie brands at your store? If so, which ones and why?
April: We’re keeping it vertical.
We’ll keep our readers updated on Candid Intimate’s launch and also bring you more images from their collection as well. Keep visiting for details.
To visit Candid Intimates online: http://www.candidintimates.com