Target pop-up shop brings Jason Wu collection to Toronto
Published Thursday, February 23, 2012 7:29PM EST
Toronto shoppers got a sample of things to come when U.S. retailer Target Corp. stormed into the city on Thursday with a one-day pop-up shop.
The Minneapolis-based retailer, which plans to open more than 100 stores across the country next year, said the temporary King Street West store featured a limited-edition collection from Canadian designer Jason Wu.
"For me to have a broader reach and to be the first designer to bring Target to Canada is really fabulous," Wu told CTV's Canada AM earlier in the day.
But the Vancouver-raised designer who created the white, one-shouldered gown worn by Michelle Obama for the inauguration of her husband, U.S. President Barack Obama, said he is not worried about "watering down" his product for the masses with the new collection.
"With this collection, I wanted to emphasize that it wasn't a warmed-down version of my collection. I designed it with its own inspiration in mind; in this case the French New Wave films," he said.
"I wanted the collection to be a representation of me but not a copy of main collection. So in that way there is something quite authentic about it. I call it the Jason Wu starter kit."
Wu said the collection was a different challenge for him as he chose to work with new materials such as cottons, canvases and silks.
"It really comes through as looking quite expensive and luxurious even though it is at a very affordable price. I think that is a testament to how Target works and how our collaboration works this time," the designer said.
When Target launched a sampling of Wu's collection in Miami earlier this month, customers were enraged after one couple gobbled up the entire collection. But company spokeswoman Dustee Jenkins is ensuring Toronto shoppers that this will not the case this time as each shopper were limited to three items.
When the doors opened to the public just before noon, the first 25 people in line were ushered inside for a photo with Wu and the retailer's canine mascot, Bullseye, before they headed to the racks.
Earlier, Wu darted out of the shop at 363 King St. W. to greet some shoppers and have his photo taken.
Among those in line was Debra Howley, who had been waiting outside since 7:30 a.m. for the opening.
For Howley, the designer was the biggest draw.
"I've been an admirer for a long time and I was going over his collections again this morning," Howley told The Canadian Press. "So I'm so excited that it's going to be so affordable that I'll be able to come away with three beautiful pieces that I'll wear for a long time."
The entire proceeds from the day's receipts were expected to go to the United Way of Toronto.