Fred Segal, the innovative trend retailer who bought an legendary California everyday glance through a discerning curatorial eye, died Thursday in Santa Monica. He was 87.
Segal capitalized on proximity to Hollywood and celebrity clientele to encourage easy-hunting luxury copied by other models and immortalized in well-liked tradition, most usually in the mid-1990s by way of the early aughts when the store was title-checked in movies these kinds of as Clueless.
Segal and his purchasers “were able to pull what designed Los Angeles distinct and set that into the shop as a substitute of searching — as so many others did — to the runways of New York, or even Europe,” claimed Valli Herman, a life writer and previous L.A. Moments trend critic.
As he distribute the gospel about designer jeans paired with higher-conclusion T-shirts, Herman also popularized the shop-in just-a-shop thought that served promote SoCal manufacturers this kind of as Juicy Couture.
“Fred Segal described L.A. style and sparked a innovative shift in design with the initial ever denim bar,” Jeff Lotman, CEO and Owner of Fred Segal, claimed in a statement.
Segal was born in Chicago but produced his way west as a traveling shoe salesman. He opened the “Denims Bar” on Melrose at Crescent Heights in 1960, which, in accordance to the store’s website, finished up “attracting crowds and triggering website traffic jams even however they were being advertising for the unheard rate of $19.95 when jeans were ordinarily $3.00.”
Besides advertising manner, the Fred Segal keep that opened on Sunset also experienced a buzzy restaurant that drew superstars and tourists alike.
Herman sees Segal’s legacy in Rick Caruso’s qualities like The Grove and The Americana at Brand, which elevate “buying as an exercise, not just a spot for commerce, where by you took all these terrific super market boutiques and outlets and type of designed a complete universe.”
The Fred Segal model has distribute past L.A. and Malibu locations to suppliers at LAX and in Switzerland and Taiwan.
Segal’s passing, next the deaths of Stanley Marcus, former CEO of Neiman Marcus, and the bankruptcy travails of Barneys New York, additional ushers the conclusion of an period of specialty suppliers, claimed a mournful Herman.
“Also lousy, mainly because the retailer experienced a chance to actually know their regional industry,” she claimed. “And with the loss of these kinds of stores you have a serious sort of interpreter.”
Segal is survived by his wife and five little ones.