How do you say “when it rains it pours” in French? Laure Hériard Dubreuil must be intimately familiar with the phrase these days, her famously sunny disposition aside. A New York outpost of The Webster, her iconic, expertly curated Miami store, opened this week, and before the month of November is over, the debut offering from her new ready-to-wear collection, LHD, will hit the racks, mixed in among the Céline, Balenciaga, Proenza Schouler, and Saint Laurent.
The Greene Street Webster was four years in the making. Convincing the Landmarks Preservation Commission to allow a four-floor addition to a cast-iron building in Soho’s historic district takes time, as does actually erecting the thing. LHD has had a briefer incubation period, but it’s no less a labor of love, modeled as it is after Hériard Dubreuil’s own wardrobe, the bright colors, bold prints, and designer labels of which have made her a favorite of street style photographers.
A chorus of designer friends, clients, and employees encouraged Hériard Dubreuil to create the new collection. “At the start, I was like, ‘You’re all crazy.’ I receive 200 emails a day from new brands. Don’t you think the market is saturated? But everybody worked on me,” she recalls. Eventually she decided there was room at the Webster for a reasonably priced, easy-to-pack, colorful range of dresses, skirts, knits, and bodysuits, plus accessories made in collaboration with the likes of Pierre Hardy, Aurélie Bidermann, Maison Michel, Eres, and Linda Farrow. “I started working on it, and like everything I do, I wanted to have something very personal. It’s not adding a brand for [the sake of] adding a brand. It’s about what people are asking for from me,” she explains.
The debut collection is inspired by Miami—one print features alligators and other tropical fauna. Subsequent offerings will be influenced by other destinations, but they’re all likely to be bright and print-centric. “People want something fun,” Hériard Dubreuil says. “It’s about having relaxed and playful items, something you can wear over and over, without feeling like it’s such a big investment.” LHD will be noticeably less expensive than much of what’s sold at the Webster. Hériard Dubreuil designed it that way so that shoppers who aren’t as print-happy as she is can experiment without breaking the bank. “It’s an add-on, something that you can mix and match with the rest of the collections,” she says. “We still want you to buy the $4,000 Balenciaga!”