The sleek, exquisite 9 story building on the corner of 58 & 5th, known to most as Bergdorfs, is turning 111. Why celebrate 111 years when you haven’t celebrated a birthday in years, since 1951 to be exact? Bergdorf Goodman’s executives explain that the message is in the 1-1-1 of 111: Bergdorf’s being one store in one city, providing one singular luxury experience.
Bergdorfs is planning the fete to end all fetes. As Linda Fargo, senior vice president of the fashion office and store presentation describes it, “It’s a top-to-bottom celebration including every floor, all the elevators, every hall, all 21 windows on the three sides of the women’s store, even lavender lighting. It’s a season’s worth of celebration. We’ve also got some surprises, including something dramatic for the Fifth Avenue facade.”
September 4th is the kickoff day, where there will be several permanent shop openings – one of which is The Row designed by the Olsen twins – and renovations along with an extended mix of activities, exclusive products and pop-ups through the fall season.
In planning this bash Bergdorfs reached out to many top designers, many of which made their mark at Bergdorfs, to design exclusives for the dazzling celebration. Over 100 designers responded from Alexander McQueen to Prada to Charlotte Olympia.
Michael Kors, who was discovered by then then-fashion director Dawn Mello as he was designing underneath another designer, created his first collection under his own name for Bergdorf’s. For the 111 celebration, Kors has updated that very first collection. Remember the suit Richard Gere made infamous in American Gigolo? For Giorgio Armani’s exclusive he has recreated the gray pinstripe pleated suit. Another designer who made his debut (2009) at Bergdorfs, Jason Wu created a full-skirted cocktail dress in vivid candylike colors that recalls his first dresses.
There’s also a commemorative book, “Scatter My Ashes at Bergdorf Goodman” (now there’s an idea) by Sara James Mnookin (Harper Design), a title lifted from the caption under an old New Yorker cartoon. Then there’s a documentary about the store with the same title featuring designers, shoppers and employees.
Of course, it wouldn’t be the celebration to end all celebrations with out a big private party at The Plaza. How do I get on that quest list?!!
1st Group from right to left: Carolina Herrera’s Double-Face Wool Dress W/Mink Collar, Dries Van Noten Parka W/Leopard-Print Rabbit-Fur Lining, Fendi’s Calf-Hair & Wooden Clutches, Charlotte Olympia’s Suede Wedge W/Silk Embroidery.
2nd Group from right to left: Etro’s Embroidered Wool & Silk Coat, Marchesa’s Silk Dress W:Goose-Feather Trim, David Webb 18-Karat Gold Black Enamal Onyx Cuff W/Diamonds, Jimmy Choo Suede And Beaded High Heel.