Yesterday's post on being a great brand also extends to retailers, in particular the bit about knowing your customer and what she might want. Last week in Milan I visited Wait & See, a brilliant new independent retail store (it opened in September 2010) by the supremely elegant Uberta Zambeletti (above in the photo). Uberta is an experienced designer in her own right and has worked for years in the industry for Etro, Max Mara and Missoni, amongst others. She is over 35 and totally gets what women want to wear to look great and completely understands her customer and how they want clothes presented, I could have bought nearly everything in the shop.
She has a massive selection of brands (over 90) but has cherry picked just a few styles from each one to work within her own idea of what this season is all about. It really is her edit of the best of what's out there perfectly pitched to her customer. She also works with designers to get one-offs for the store that work in precisely with her vision. She has a few of her own designs in the mix too and hopes to increase these when she's settled down a bit.
The store is a joy to shop, small, light-filled and easy to read, with stories set out in easy to digest, colour coordinated chunks, with displays of accessories interspersed to keep you from getting bored. I recognised hardly any of the brands, which made it very exciting to shop/discover, they were mostly Italian/French and had a touch of the elegant bohemian about them, which I think is Umberta's handwriting.
It's a long time since I've been into a shop that seemed so brilliantly pitched at the modern, fashionable-but-not obsessed grown up woman. It's just a shame you have to go all the way to Milan to see it. Never mind. Uberta's philosophy on life is 'wait and see', hence the store name, so perhaps she'll eventually get around to opening a store over in London (where she trained in design, at Chelsea and then at the Royal College) or perhaps she'll inspire someone here to get the retail mix right for us. Meanwhile, here's her website and blog (and how fabulous is that music?)
M.A.D sat on this very comfy sofa and contemplated writing something on the blackboard while I messed about trying everything on. Note the lovely Bokja bee. I loved the patchwork lining on the inside of the doors in the changing rooms (below).
I bought this gorgeous cotton knit dress by Boboutic in a pale tobacco, which looks great worn either just as a dress with flats or over slim cut off jeans in dark denim.
And here is Uberta, looking very chic and Italian. Her dress is vintage, her pants by Soho de Luxe and shoes by Roses' Roses.