- Vivian Hendriksz |
London fashion week designer Matthew Williamson is preparing to shut down his store in London, as the label turns its focus to e-commerce and license-based operations. The decision follows on from the business shuttering its store in New York and terminating its MW diffusion line, following its partner company going into insolvency.
"As we celebrate our eighteenth year in the business, it's really exciting to be able to rethink our company and set new ideas in place," said Williamson and co-company founder Joseph Velosa in a joined statement. "Over the years the industry and consumers have changed and we're keen to address and respond to that. The aim is to refresh what's there and create a lifestyle brand that we're both truly proud of both creatively and commercially."
Matthew Williamsons' current store on Bruton Street is set to close its doors during the summer period, but the label is set to relocate to another location within London. The new unit will serve as a showroom for the brand as well as by-appointment only store for online customers. The label will be launching a new website early next year, which will sell the British fashion designer's collections exclusively, offer free international shipping and same day delivery in London. The label's store in Qatar currently remains open.
"Our online success can be traced to our focus on delivering products with love and attention - that personal offline relationship that can often be overlooked in e-commerce," explained business director Rosanna Falconer, who was formerly the brand's digital strategist since becoming part of the team in 2013. The brand will continue to work with Debenhams on the Butterfly collection as well as with collaborating Georgie Macintyre.
In order to appeal to the current "buy-now, wear-now mentality" Matthew Williamson will design six fashion collections per year and showcase them directly to consumers at small events. The London-based label will still present bi-annually at London Fashion Week, though "not necessarily through traditional fashion shows."