Coming up Trumps! Mogul's daughter Ivanka shows first ever fashion show – and the bright, stylish collection is deemed a hit
11:46 GMT, 30 March 2012
Ivanka Trump staged her first fashion show this week, to display the latest addition to her merchandise empire.
The array of brightly coloured scarf dresses, slim pants and tailored suits hit stores a few weeks ago, and were showcased in the catwalk show on Wednesday night.
'This is such a validation of what I've been working on,' the daughter of billionaire real estate mogul Donald Trump told a packed audience before the show at Lord & Taylor's flagship store in Manhattan.
Top Trumps: Ivanka presents her first ever fashion show, with brothers Eric, left, and Don Jr, there to watch
Family support: Ivanka Trump, left, is joined by husband Jared Kushner, centre, and mother Ivana in the front row of her presentation at the store
Ivanka's mother Ivana Trump looked glamorous in black suit and metallic tights, and seemed relaxed at the prospect of greeting her ex-husband Donald, whom she divorced in 1990
Good(ish) to see you: Ivanka Trump looked relaxed on meeting her ex-husband Donald, him less so – and the two kept their distance
For the occasion, Ivanka chose to wear a pair of cream-coloured jodhpurs from the collection.
The line, which ranges from a $50 (31) top to $245 (253) dresses, has been a hit.
Lord & Taylor's president, Bonnie Brooks, said 40 percent of the pieces delivered to the store have sold already, and it's the designer brand customers are searching for most often on Lord &Taylor's website.
Brooks, also president of Lord & Taylor's parent company, Hudson's Bay Co., said a new collection typically has a five percent sell-through rate.
She said Trump's clothes have appealed to a broad group of consumers, from women in their 20s to those in their 60s.
Bright: Ivanka's collection is rich in colour and print
And it goes beyond the Trump name, she said. Ivanka Trump is a mother and a business woman, and consumers relate to that, Brooks said.
Trump, executive vice president of development and acquisitions for the Trump Organization, first forayed into retailing in September 2007 when she opened a luxury jewellery store on Madison Avenue.
The store expanded and relocated to Manhattan's SoHo district last fall.
Trump's jewellery is sold nationwide at various boutiques for $3,500 (2,189) apiece on average, including $5,000 (3,128) diamond necklaces and $600 onyx and diamond earrings.
Her second jewellery boutique opens in Beijing this summer, and four more are planned in China by 2015.
Resonates: Ivanka Trump is a mother and a business woman, and consumers relate to that, Brooks said
In spring 2011, Trump started selling handbags and shoes, but at prices more in line with her clothing: Pumps cost about $125 (78), handbags about $150 ($94).
'You can't fake diamonds,' Trump said after the show. 'That is, there's flexibility to offer high-quality and stylish clothing even if you can't use crocodile, she said.
Trump said she aims to fill a void she sees in department stores between 'dowdy' and overly trendy.
Macy's Inc. and Nordstrom Inc. stores also sell her clothing and accessories.
Chic: The collection goes beyond the Trump name, says Lord & Taylor's Bonnie Brooks
Hit: Ivanka Trump's ready-to-wear collection has gone down a storm in Lord & Taylor where it went on sale some weeks ago
The business, excluding jewellery, is expected to generate $230m (143m) in sales this year, and Trump's goal is to build a $1bn (625m) business, with expansion into children's wear and other areas.
'It's all about execution and staying on message,' she added.
Trump says she's involved in the design of the products – but don't expect her to do the sketches: 'I can't draw.'
Instead, she said, she sends her design team pictures from magazines to help articulate what she wants.