Cynthia Rowley Diversifies Offer with CuRious Sweet Shop
Celebrating the launch of her debut confectionery line CuRious, US fashion designer Cynthia Rowley recently unveiled a whimsical candy store-in-a-store at her Manhattan flagship that suggests the brand is serious about diversifying its core fashion offer.
Located on the second floor of Rowley’s new East 78th Street townhouse, opened in February 2013, CuRious is billed as an “Alice in Wonderland meets Willy Wonka” environment. Custom-made confections include cotton candy in flavours including black liquorice, watermelon mint and Champagne. It also sells candy centrepieces, bespoke piñatas and – as the piece de resistance – edible place settings: cake servers, cutlery and plates made entirely of candy.
The edible collection is the focus of a viral video to promote the launch, which features two models gobbling plates, knives and even their table in a busy restaurant to the bemusement of fellow diners.
The appeal of branching into confectionery, Rowley explained, was the fact that it provides a broader, feel-good factor and an affordable luxury in a tougher economic climate. “It’s the delight of a treat for yourself without it being like a $1,000 handbag.”
Only the ground floor of the Cynthia Rowley townhouse actually retails the brand’s ready-to-wear and accessories, while the upper two levels are the appointment-only home of ExhibitionA: an online art marketplace owned by Rowley and her gallerist husband Bill Powers.
The growing mutual interest and collaboration between the food and fashion industries is discussed in Fashion Eats and Food Meets Fashion in Harrods’ Digital Campaign. For more on weird and wonderful sweet-selling spaces, see La Maison des Maîtres Chocolatiers’ Confectionery Cavern in Brussels.