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When Foley & Corinna departed the Lower East Side this weekend, they became the latest in a string of shops to leave the neighborhood this year. One of those shops was Veda, the three-year-old leather label, which shuttered on Ludlow Street back in August. Veda's far from gone, though—they just launched e-commerce a few weeks ago. We sat down with designer Lyndsey Butler to talk about why she traded brick-and-mortar for the Internet, and what's in store for the future.
What prompted you to close the store?
Our lease was up, so it was a situation of "Oh, do we stay or do we go?" It was actually supposed to be up at the beginning of June, so I thought I'd take the summer off—after all, it's not leather jacket season. I love the Lower East Side, it was a really good fit, but I thought maybe there was another neighborhood better suited to the brand, like Soho, the West Village, or Nolita. On the Lower East Side, people responded to our vintage and one-of-a-kind pieces, which is awesome but takes a lot more work.
What are you looking for in a new location?
I loved the size of the Ludlow Street Store. It was perfect for the collection—closet-sized, so you get that sense of discovery. But now I'm only looking pretty loosely. It's not my main focus because I'm working on the spring collection and other projects.
Have you noticed the trend of stores leaving the area? Did that affect your decision to move?
Well, I did great business there and had great customers. It just became that thing where I was spending more energy on the store than the collection. I feel like the Lower East Side is great, it's booming. It was always surprising to me that there were girls walking down the street all hours of the day. But that demographic of customer lives on the Lower East Side, so she's walking by, on the way to brunch, coming home from work. That said, that side of Ludlow Street has a lot of bars and not a lot of stores, so certain hours of the day had weird energy. It wasn't a shopping crowd.
What should people look for from Veda this fall?
We did this little red motorcycle jacket, it's really cute. When I'm thinking about fall clothes, that's what I want to wear. And then we did these really great rabbit fur jackets that are kind of simple from a glance, but are cut higher in the back and longer in the front. They're really chic but you can wear them day-to-day, with jeans. And we've relaunched handbags—we did that for spring, but the fall ones are cute.
Also, I'm working on a collaboration with the Reformation, across the street from the old store. I actually feel like that will fill that gap with the reworked vintage stuff we used to do. It will have its own little area inside the Reformation, so in a way Veda will still be on Ludlow.
Like what you see? Now through the rest of the week, get 20% off anything on the Veda website when you use the discount count "VEDARacked."
· Foley + Corinna Packs Its Bags, Departs Stanton Street [Racked NY]
· LES Boutique Veda Closes Shop, Moves to the Internet [Racked NY]
· Veda [Official Site]