Nestled among the couture boutiques of SoHo in New York City you'll find an inviting little shop with a bright orange sign on one window that reads: Kirna Zabete. The shop's other window is emblazoned with “So many designers, so little time.”
So true. The boutique, which is owned by best friends Sarah Easley and Beth Buccini, is full of fabulous clothing and accessories from such avant-garde designers as Balenciaga, Givenchy, Alexander Want, Jason Wu and Stella McCartney.
Starting Sept. 9, a mini version of this hip shopping destination is coming to local Target stores as part of The Shops at Target. The program, which launched in May, highlights distinctive specialty stores and boutiques with affordable offerings presented in limited-edition collections co-created by the shop owners.
Along with Kirna Zabete, The Shops at Target this season will feature New York City's Odin, San Francisco's The Curiosity Shoppe and Boston's Patch NYC.
Dare to have fun
Kirna Zabete at Target is a daring collection of fun, flirty pieces, full of unexpected mixtures of patterns, textures, styles and accessories.
“One thing that we say that we love is a fashion risk. I would rather just put on too many bracelets or mix some prints that might be a little off than be dull,” Easley said in a video interview at KirnaZabete.com. “I appreciate an effort. I even like a little bad taste. Bad taste is better than no taste.”
Buccini nods in agreement.
The name of the boutique was derived from the pair's “silly college nicknames:” Easley is Kirna, and Buccini is Zabete. Best friends since the day they met in the freshman dorms at University of Virginia, the two left their previous careers in 1998 and struck out together as business partners.
The Target collection mimics the partners' attitude for their brick and mortar location in its sass and versatility.
“The style of the boutique is to be able to dress in many different moods. Maybe one day you want to be girlie in a roses hot pink dress ... or maybe you want to be more rocker chick,” Buccini said.
Featuring nearly 100 pieces, the urban-chic Kirna Zabete at Target collection has some distinct hallmarks: signature colors of pink, red and teal, boldly colored graphic dresses and coats, lots of layering, busy tights and signature splashes of red and pink. And most of the line is sealed with a kiss: Puckered lips are a design element that ties together the collection.
“We love mixing prints and pattern and colors,” Buccini said during a video/photo shoot for the Kirna Zabete for Target Lookbook. “We added a bunch of red accessories because red is our favorite color. And we love red lips to tie it all in.”
In some ways, the Target collection throws all fashion rules out the window, reviving the boyfriend jacket, faux leather pants, lace and graphic textured tights and the drawstring jumpsuit.
“We love fashion — beginners, intermediate and advanced. If you know nothing about fashion, can't pronounce Kirna Zabete or Balenciaga, we welcome you with open arms,” Easley said. “We would love to dress you as well as the most seasoned fashion editor and every(one) in between.”