G-Star Store Opening Rocks Back Bay
Darlings, your prayers have been answered! Dutch denim deity G-Star Raw has finally opened a Boston location. Can I get an Amen? The label, founded in Amsterdam in 1989, has developed a cult following among European fashion cognoscenti from Berlin to Barcelona. With 28 stores worldwide, the G-Star gospel is, at last, being spread to the U.S. Last year saw openings in NYC and L.A. and just this month, the Boston store swung wide its doors, and will be followed shortly by launches in San Fran and Chicago.
The new space at 348 Newbury Street (formerly home to Allston Beat) recalls industrial-chic design yet is still airy and inviting. Concrete fixtures from Amsterdam softened with cognac leather inserts complement light wood and an astounding four-tiered ‘wall of denim.’ I was converted immediately! Every detail in the store has been considered, from the spacious, well-lit fitting rooms (N.B. there are no full-length mirrors in the cabins, you have to ‘come out’ to admire yourself) to the variety of hanger orientations, depending on the garment. The cool, hipster staff is extremely knowledgeable and friendly and act as stylists for each client. Tara, one of the charming sales associates, led me around the store with such expertise, I could have written a dissertation on the company.
G-Star is extremely product focused, and as I perused (ok, fondled) the seductive piles of denim I was struck by the extreme attention to detail. First of all, they use Japanese denim which is produced exclusively for the label. Each pair of jeans is a work of art, each style an ‘authentic original.’ Among the vast range of styles and finishes there is an overall theme of high-quality, durable comfort with a strong, masculine allure. Currently the label focuses on menswear, with approximately 70% of the collection geared toward men. Acolytes of the brand are typically well-educated, well-traveled types: architects, designers, photographers who appreciate the extraordinary workmanship. I found an undeniable Dutch or Eastern Euro-chic feel to the military-inspired denim and outerwear.
At the store opening, I had the benefit of observing tanned, beautiful boys and girls sipping champagne and slipping into the sexy styles. Some of my favorite G-Star denim details: pockets which had been hand-scraped with a razor and then repaired for an almost Frankenstein look, sections of jean which had been ‘temporarily stapled’ to create a ‘permanent wrinkle,’ belt loops on the diagonal, button-closure front pockets, riveting, studs, contrast stitching and the dizzying list goes on and on. They should have provided fainting couches! This season all styles are button-fly and as always, are available in any waist/length combination. For men, waists run 28–38; lengths, 30–36. For women, waists are 25–32; lengths, 30–34. Because of the variation in rinses and cuts, waist-size may vary — lengths are always true. There is also a variety of outerwear options from corduroy to cargo-style jackets, hats, scarves, gloves, sweaters, etc. Price point on the denim: $120–220; outerwear, $250–350; tailored/handcrafted styles, $350.
Among the fabulous styles: The straight-leg Dexter pant boasts a reverse yoke, which helps to round out the seat. Bottomline: it makes your ass look great. Actually all of the styles are derriere-friendly. The Radar Low Loose has a slight flare, drop pockets (love it!) and double seaming for a better fit through the leg. The Elwood is a 3-D jean which has been shaped over motorcycle pants, seams and all. I honestly thought I would swoon, these pants are so damn sexy. The Elwood has a crafted knee and reinforced heel — for when you jump on your bike! And the Holy Grail, which I handled with great reverence, is the Handcrafted Raw Collection. These glorious pieces are hand-tailored like a suit from Savile Row. I got up close and personal to inspect the impeccable hem, cinch back (no need for a belt) and double inseam which prevents shifting when walking. Each pair of handcrafted jeans has an info tag in the lining written in ballpoint telling where and when it was made, along with the style details. I say Hallelujah!
Brothers and Sisters, let us bow our heads and give thanks for G-Star Raw Denim! ♦
Special thanks to Shaynirae, Director of US Stores, for her help with this story.
Crossposted from EDGE Boston