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Fashion for All (Almost)
By: Janet Kalandranis
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In the midst of NY Fashion Week there are images of over-the-top outfits, shoes that girls would die for, and an inaccessibility that makes it the “who’s who” of the fashion world. The week is played out like a theatrical movie with scenes and costumes that just don’t feel like they would work in the everyday. But as much as fashion week is a brand that’s over the top, it provides inspiration for more real-life brands. Those that are more accessible; those that have figured out how to bring the fringe of a skirt to the everyday outfit.

Fashion is supposed to be high-end. It’s supposed to be expensive and it’s supposed to take chances. That’s why there aren’t NY Fashion Week outfits in every closet. But what if a brand could take the dreamlike inspiration from Fashion Week and make it work, yet also make it stand out? What if this brand could make it available...really available?

Kohl’s (stick with me here) has made fashion mainstream. No, it’s not runway fashion, but it’s higher and more designed than the original line of clothing it had when the brand first launched. The brand knew it had to step out of the assumed “lack of cool clothes” if it was going to make an impact in the fashion world. So it turned to celebrities — fashion icons, some would say — to throw out all the rules of Kohl’s and just create. What ensued was brand success, both for Kohl’s and for the designers.

Sure, the brand won’t be featured on the runway this week, and it probably won’t create the next big fashion following. But what Kohl’s has done is created a new niche for its brand. It’s differentiated and accepted for those fashion icons that go to school, work a 9 to 5, and simply need something affordable yet fashionable for the weekend. Kohl’s is placing the emphasis on fashion, not accepting discount-store staples, and in the end changing the game. One fringe at a time.

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About the Author
Janet Kalandranis is here to give you all the little brand thoughts that run through her head with a little dash of spice. Find her online here.
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