Fashion

The Webster’s New Manhattan Store Has Fashion-Lovers Flying North for the Winter

Laure Hériard Dubreuil brings her beloved Miami store to the city that never sleeps.

Dubreuil at The Webster New York.

It didn’t take long for fashion doyenne Laure Hériard Dubreuil to conquer South Beach. After attending New York’s Fashion Institute of Technology and working as a merchandiser for Balenciaga and Yves Saint Laurent in Paris, she moved to Miami in 2007 and, two years later, founded The Webster, the now-cherished multibrand boutique on Collins Avenue. Since then, new iterations of the shop—known for its nontraditional selection of pieces from top-tier designers presented in vividly hued, living room–like spaces—have popped up in Costa Mesa, California; Houston; and Miami’s Bal Harbour. Now, Dubreuil is ready to take on Manhattan, and is launching a six-floor location in SoHo this month. “New York operates at a really different pace,” she tells me by phone, before jetting to Paris for Fashion Week. “The energy there is so stimulating for me. It’s a magical place.”

For French-born Dubreuil—who moved back to New York in 2011 and shares an East Village row house with her husband, the artist Aaron Young, and their three-year-old son, Marcel—opening a shop in the city was a logical next step. Over the years, Dubreuil has amassed a devoted East Coast client base, and her New York customers have long begged her to bring a shop to the city. According to her, snowbirds who winter in Miami and the creative set that visits for Art Basel have become hooked on the Webster’s singular items. Dubreuil’s taste for eccentric products fuels the production of offbeat pieces that otherwise would not have been put into production due to lack of commercial interest. She carries pieces that she claims “people can’t find anywhere else.” That exclusive, carefully crafted experience runs through in all its initiatives: In Miami, for example, the Webster recently hosted a Valentino pop-up accented with black basketballs and pink yoga mats in its entryway. It was the only boutique outside major fashion capitals to host the brand’s pop-up shop, stocked with coveted limited-edition pieces and the Italian label’s resort 2018 collection of jewel-toned dresses and elevated, sports-inspired separates.

View from within the new Soho boutique.

Similarly, the Webster’s New York location is filled with offerings intended to satisfy even the most demanding appetites. Like the original outpost, which Dubreuil describes as “an extension of my closet and things I love,” the new store carries attention-grabbing pieces that flirt with the limits of good taste (think glamour by way of unapologetic amounts of glitter). It features garments from nearly 100 designers, from  London-based Isa Arfen to Tokyo-based Julien David, as well as children’s clothing and, for the first time, winter coats, furs, and sweaters.

The space also exhibits artwork and furniture by local talent. Verre églomisé expert Miriam Ellner has created a gilded wall painting, while furniture-maker Katie Stout contributed a light sculpture. A life-size bronze flamingo by Rogan Gregory sets the store’s tone, warding against any possible self-seriousness. And, like the Webster’s uptown counterparts, the fifth floor features a salon by Australian stylist David Mallett, marking his inaugural outpost outside Paris.

Dubreuil seems to have embraced New York’s culture of swift creativity. Just as she created her own version of Miami style, she’s re-envisioning New York fashion with literal and figurative warmth. “I’m a curator,” she says. “I’m constantly editing.”

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