La Ligne Talks Growth and Opening Third Boutique in Palm Beach

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La Ligne continues to expand its retail footprint.

After opening stores on Madison Avenue in New York in 2019 and in Highland Park Village in Dallas in 2020, La Ligne’s next stop is Palm Beach, where it is set to open a nearly 1,000-square-foot boutique at The Royal Poinciana Way on Wednesday.

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As a result of years of cultivating a loyal client base through trunk shows and pop-ups in and around the Palm Beach area, cofounders Molly Howard, Meredith Melling, and Valerie Macaulay felt The Royal Poinciana was the ideal location to expand to.

“Since the launch of our brand in 2016, being able to offer physical touch points to further complement our online presence has always been critically important to the growth and success of our brand. South Florida has become an increasingly important market for La Ligne, with an ever-growing client base we have cultivated over the years through various trunk shows and in market events. It is our hope with this location to further offer our La Ligne community a welcoming and familiar environment, that seamlessly integrates our physical and digital spaces,” said Howard.

The Palm Beach boutique will house the newly launched resort 2021 collection, that features dresses in jewel tones and colorful seasonal prints, including their bestselling Lola ($395) and Pyper ($395) dresses, seasonless essentials and evergreen styles such as the Marin sweater ($295), Bastien sweater ($295) and Lean Lines T ($125, of which 100 percent of sales are donated to the Lower Eastside Girls Club).

For the third time, interior designer Lien Luu was commissioned to create a warm and inviting aesthetic that mirrors the shopping experiences in the New York and Dallas boutiques, while adding design elements that are signature to Palm Beach, such as a green palm print couch. Luu incorporated brass fixtures and detailed crown molding to convey the look and feel of a chic, Parisian apartment, as well as personal objects from the cofounders’ homes such as an ashtray, coffee table books, an old Goyard trunk, a mirror and a Frances Palmer handmade vase. La Ligne’s stripe-centric design philosophy comes to life with references to the “line” throughout.

In designing the Palm Beach store, Howard said they wanted a consistency found in all the stores.

“The feeling you get when you walk into the store, you walk into someone’s very fabulous closet,” she said. She said the new store straddles the worlds of La Ligne and Palm Beach. There are fun, stripy pillows and the colors are bright and sunny.

“It’s the warmer, sunnier Floridian version of our Madison Avenue store,” she said.

In the beginning, La Ligne’s merchandise stuck to a core color palette of navy, cream and black. In the Palm Beach store, those colors aren’t present, and it’s more pale pink, pale blue, orange and yellow. She said it’s a vast offering, and lighter-weight pieces will be among them.

“We’re not going to have the seven-ply cashmere turtleneck in the Palm Beach store,” she said.

Howard estimates the average order in Palm Beach will probably be around $550, which is about two pieces. The sweet spot for one piece will be $325. Sweaters retail between $275 and $495. Overall their number-one style is the Marin sweater which is $295, and comes in 25 colors.

She anticipates dresses will be popular, too.

“We found that the women there are really drawn to our dresses, which are massively successful. The women there move around a lot. People were asking us, for being a brand known so much for sweaters, whether we were nervous about opening in a warmer place, but we find people in Palm Beach are really moving around the country during the year. We feel pretty confident that people will buy our dresses when they’re in Palm Beach and wear a light sweater,” she said.

Some 40 percent of La Ligne’s business is done in sweaters, and dresses account for about 30 percent. “They’re starting to become neck and neck. Over the past couple of months, the dresses have become really crazy,” said Howard. The dresses for fall are silks and charmeuse, and in the summer months, they’re cotton poplin.

The remaining 30 percent of the business is generated by Ts, bottoms, shirts, outerwear and accessories.

Howard said the company has a “robust” retail strategy moving forward and is looking at opening stores in places such as Los Angeles, the Hamptons, Chicago and Atlanta. “We’re lucky to be a direct-to-consumer, digitally native business which has so much visibility into where our customers are. That helps us to make really informed decisions about where we would be successful in the physical space,” she said.

The company continues to do editorial shoots two to three times a year featuring friends of the brand. Currently, Amy Schumer is being featured on its website. Other women who have been photographed include Lily Aldridge, Olivia Wilde, Dianna Agron and Mindy Kaling, who continue to be featured on the site. “We’ve never paid anyone to wear our clothing. There’s no influencer marketing, to us that feels inauthentic to the storytelling we’re doing. We’re lucky enough to have women around who have put us on the map. It’s an editorial story highlighting them and the new collection,” she said.

Describing the current pace of business, Howard said, “Business is better than it’s ever been. I’ve had 15 days in the last 30 days where every one of those days I’ve said, ‘today is the best day we’ve ever had.'” She said November was the best month they’ve ever had.


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