New tweens concept launches

Thread & SoleNew children’s and youth footwear and apparel store, Thread & Sole, has opened its first store at Sylvia Park, with a three year goal for 18 stores in New Zealand.

The launch at Sylvia Park is to be followed by a second store in Manukau at the end of May.

Following the Manukau store, plans are afoot to launch another four stores throughout New Zealand this year, a six next year, and a further six in 2017. The stores will range in size from 118 to 150sqm.

Mid-May, the store’s e-commerce site will become fully operational.

Thread & Sole, the brainchild of Kelly Leigh and Mark Anderson, has been well received by the market.

“The feedback is that customers are welcoming this option as a change to the typical kids’ shopping environment,” says Leigh.

“This is because they have the feeling that their shopping habits are based on availability rather than choice.”

Leigh explains that after working together for almost a decade as a marketing manager and CEO, she and Anderson discovered a gap in the market for on trend branded products at competitive prices for the sub-teen market through their joint experience in marketing, visual merchandising, and retail operational roles, as well as international inspiration from participation in the Westfield World Retail Study Tour.

threadandsole three“All of this gave birth to the concept of offering kids a place where they actually want to shop and which resembles the environment in which their influencers already shop,” she says.

“Overall we used many influences and expertise gained over time to create a unique and clean pallet in a kids’ retail environment.

“We believe a combination of company-owned and individually-owned franchised stores will offer a strong and consistent brand message to the market, with the ability to grow the network in a timely manner.”

Thread & Sole’s international footwear and apparel labels for boys and girls from age three to 14 include Ben Sherman, Firetrap, French Connection, Majestic, Ouch, Bardot Junior, Converse, Vans Shoes, Dr Martens, and Palladium as well as some sports brands that will be added from the beginning of next year.

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