We pay attention to retail


With the opening of his first store—snugly located in Paris' tony Palais Royal—Rick Owens has come a long way from his former milieu, which he once described to us in a Hinterview as the "super sleazy, crystal, tranny hustler bars just off Hollywood Boulevard." Yet despite the high-rent ambitions, we're happy to report that Owens' new luxe ways aren't far removed from his old louche days. Among the women's and men's collections, jeans, shoes and bags, as well as his furs for Revillon and pieces from his new furniture line, one can find "opera DVDs and books on all my favorite scary old queens, like Stephen Tennant, Robert de Montesquiou and Jayne County," not to mention Internet-scavenged human skulls and bones. Displays and seats are made out of cashmere-upholstered plywood crates, recalling, according to Owens, a posh boxing gym from the 1940s as designed by Jean-Michel Frank [the interior designer known for his opulent materials]. And finally, for those with their noses in the air, the American in Paris promises to "always make the store smell good, too." Rick Owens, Jardins du Palais Royal, 130-133 Galerie de Valois, +33 (0) 1 40 20 42 52.
He's dressed both the tasteful head of Camilla Parker-Bowles for her royal wedding last year and the crazy cranium of Isabella Blow with a jewel-encrusted lobster number, but now the world's foremost hat artist, Philip Treacy, is turning Umbro—the official outfitters of the English soccer team—on its head with his new Philip Treacy for Umbro line. During London Fashion Week last spring, and with the voice of Grace Jones booming through the speakers (challenging the audience to "come and have a go if you think you're hard enough") a parade of models, British soccer stars and ribbon-twirling gymnasts took to the floor to show off the milliner's foray into men's and women's clothing and accessories. The range reinterprets Umbro's sporting heritage with a wink of luxury: hooded sweatshirts in cashmere, for example, and hybrid sneakers in black python skin, as well as unicorn-logo tees, shorts, blazers and—gasp—baseball caps, all in cornea-burning colors-on-colors and a dizzying optical patterns. Prices start at $80 for a workout top and go up to $800 for a tailored down jacket. At Bloomingdales in New York and Questionair in London. -Stephen Morriss

British high-street menswear institution Topman comes up trumps again with its Benjamin Kirchhoff/George Cox for Topman footwear range. Gothic-inspired designers Edward Meadham and Benjamin Kirchhoff have joined forces with the George Cox company, pioneer of the 1950's brothel creeper shoe that became part of the rockabilly and punk uniform for decades, to create a range of similar shoes and boots in suede and waxed leather. From $205 at Topman in London, Opening Ceremony in New York and Side by Side Tokyo. Back at its London flagship on Oxford Street, Topman ups its style stakes even more with the launch of Lens, a space curated by b-store owner Matthew Murphy, who curates a rotating selection of re-worked and re-issued pieces (pictured here) by the likes of men's designers Siv Stoldal, Dexter Wong and Henrik Vibskov. Meanwhile, Topshop, Topman's big-sister store, continues to realize its global ambitions with its higher-end Unique label, which, as of September 1, lands at the temporary new Dover Street Market housed in the Comme des Garçons structure that previously hosted the CDG meets colette collaboration and the Junya Watanabe Happy Army store. The range, unveiled during London Fashion Week, features woolen pants from $147 and wool coats from $330. And now, we're topped out.-SM
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For his latest designer homage, this time to Marc Jacobs, Polish illustrator Przemek Sobocki did like the designer and got personal, adding collaged snapshots of his friends and family to the mix. After all, Jacobs, going back to his Sonic Youth, could always rely on his friends and muses—an illustrious group that counts Emmanuelle Beart, Gong Li, Uma Thurman and Isabelle Adjani—to slather on a famous finish to his collections. For his part, Sobocki included "pictures of my mum when she was young, friends I have not seen in many years, but who are still close to me, as well as some friends I just met a couple of weeks ago. In this way, the story is also about memories, when all of a sudden something reminds you of somebody from the past and you lose contact with the present for what seems like hours." As for the clothes, the fall Marc Jacobs pieces seen here include a leopard print velvet V-neck slip dress with a gathered waist, gray cashmere socks, kangaroo gloves with suede piping, connected heel shoes and a quilted "Maggie" bag. Your guess as to whether that's Maggie Gyllenhaal or Maggie Cheung. At Marc Jacobs stores worldwide.

While we haven't a clue what Albert Einstein's theory of relativity is all about, we're fairly certain it has something to do with McQ, the newest member of Alexander McQueen's growing family of lines. A more affordable sibling ($120 and up) to his signature label, the denim-based range—which debuts for fall—takes rockabillies, easy riders and other renegades of 1960's teenage America, with a little good girl thrown in, to create a classic rebel look. Studded leather jackets, belted capes and sharply-tailored pencil skirts for girls are paired with striped T-shirts, bomber jackets and laced leather pants for boys. To set the misfit mood, McQueen's launch party in Milan last spring included—among street-cast models—a concert by London ska-punk band The Ludes and a set by New York's terror of the turntable, DJ Miss Guy. In New York at Untitled (26 W. 8th Street, 212-505-1082) and Eva (227 Mulberry Street, 212-925-3208). -Lisa Weatherby
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After a month of foreplay, which included some exhibitionism, Maison Martin Margiela finally enters the Hong Kong market with its first store on the island-city, centrally located at 18 On Lan Street. The month prior saw the four floors of the all-white space transformed into a gallery, teasing soon-to-be shoppers with the house's signature pieces, past and present…Fall arrivals at Dover Street Market have started rolling in, including all the goodies of the Comme des Garçons empire, as well as Azzedine Alaïa, John Galliano, Dior Homme and Lanvin's mind-blowing debut men's collection, designed by Lucas Ossendrijver…That Lanvin Homme collection, meanwhile, appears stateside exclusively at Barneys in New York, Boston, Chicago and (along with Maxfield) Los Angeles…Thom Browne also makes his debut at the Madison Avenue retail giant this fall. We're told the cashmere coats, especially those with beaver-trimmed collars, will be the first to fly off the racks…We profiled them in the Hint Shop recently, but we can't get enough of Rogues Gallery. The Maine-based label designed by Alex Carleton has just launched "Nowhere Is Too Far," a pop-up-shop-within-a-shop (through September 4) at Earnest Sewn's Meatpacking boutique, 821 Washington Street, 212-242-3414. Expect plenty of men's and women's fashion to buy, as well as limited-edition one-offs, bags, jewelry and accessories, plus the added bonus of a screening of "Stewards of the North Atlantic," a documentary made between RG and the BBC to benefit Provincetown's Center for Coastal Studies. C'mon, it'll do you good...While the rest of the fashion industry has been getting seriously distressed over denim, G-Star, the champion of raw denim, has perfected its product while expanding into tees, sweatshirts and accessories. This month sees the opening of the London flagship at 5-11 Shorts Gardens, Covent Garden.

We love summer, by which we mean, of course, the concept of summer. It's great to know it's there as we watch it through a window, our cheeks dog-flapping in the arctic breeze of a large AC unit. On the rare occasion that we must venture into the blinding swelter—with no chance of a solar eclipse—we rely on Adam Kimmel's new sunglasses to shield us from the evil that is the sun. The native New Yorker has delivered a simple, Ray-Ban-circa-Risky-Business frame in a choice of tortoiseshell or black, focusing on subtle details and slight contrasts—i.e. silver lenses against gold hinges—that draw from his own classic taste and that of his coterie of famous friends, though not the creepy Scientologist kind. $325 at colette in Paris, and Dover Street Market in London. -SM