Saint James Opens Second US Store in NYC

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Grand Opening of Saint James' Upper East Side Location with Live Demo of Company-Specific Knitting Technique

Rendering of Saint James UES Store by Creative Capital

We want to recreate a neighborhood store that translates our values, knowing that they resonate with the local audience: authenticity of made-in-France pieces, long-lasting quality, no gimmicks, but a fierce attention to details.

Saint James, the Normandy-based purveyor of the original Breton stripe, opens the doors to its second US location today at 41 East 78th Street at Madison Avenue.

President, Luc Lesénécal says, “Reopening in the Upper East Side is a very natural move, as it is happening by ‘popular request’. We want to recreate a neighborhood store that translates our values, knowing that they resonate with the local audience: authenticity of made-in-France pieces, long-lasting quality, no gimmicks, but a fierce attention to details.”

Four years after opening its West Village boutique, Saint James’ US expansion comes at just the right time—during the rise of slow fashion retailers. The brand, established in 1889, is one of only 43 Haute-Couture and Ready-to-Wear French brands designated with Enterprise du Patrimoine-Vivant (EPV) by the French State. During opening week, Saint James will host a demonstration of one of the processes—specific only to its brand—for which they’ve garnered such recognition: “Remaillage.”

Constructing Saint James’ famed seaman sweater requires over 25,000 yards of wool, 18 meticulous steps and 15 days of work by teams of highly-trained professional knitters. Master knitter, Philippe Blomme, has worked with the company for nearly three decades. He and his team of professionals operate any of the 75 knitting machines (valued at $100K each) housed in Saint James’ atelier.

“Knitting has evolved so much throughout our history, but it remains a fascinating balance to be found between the highest forms of art and science,” says Blomme.

Remaillage is part of the fourth phase (assembly) of sweater construction. Unique to Saint James, it is the hand-knitting of the collar to the sweater body on the needle of the crown, stitch-by-stitch, to give the garment optimal flexibility when pulling on and off.

Saint James internally trains its “remailleuses” from 18 to 24 months, and currently employs master Remailleuse with 20 years of assembly experience, Stephanie Demassard. In celebration of the new store opening, Saint James brought Demassard and the Remaillage machine to NYC. Live demonstrations display Saint James’ expertise in its traditional craft, for which it was awarded the EPV mark of a “Living Heritage Brand” by the French State.

Debuting on the shelves of Saint James’ new store is the vibrant Spring/Summer ’16 collection. Inspired by the adventure and freedom of seafaring and the beauty of seaside living, the bright new collection embodies its geographical roots, highlighting the hues of yellow and cerulean blue that composed the original blazon of Mont Saint Michel.

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Website: saintjamesboutique.com
Facebook: Saint James
Instagram: @saintjames
Twitter: @saintjames

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Stephanie Sica
SAINT JAMES USA
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since: 07/2011
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