Tocca Fetes New Store, Clothing Relaunch with Former Lyell Designer

While Tocca's new Hudson Street location formally opened late last year, the preview event for the label's new spring collection felt like a celebration both of the new location, as well as the label's relatively new ready-to-wear designer, Emma Fletcher.

Fletcher spent years helming downtown It-label Lyell before shuttering the brand (much to the heartbreak of her fans) back in 2010. Her handiwork is definitely evident in Tocca's new collection of delicate, ladylike separates -- especially the lace pieces and the silk tanks. Spring represents the designer's sophomore effort for the label, and also happens to be the first collection that the label has chosen to whole-sale -- meaning you can expect to see Tocca pieces in other New York boutiques.

The label's new store on Hudson Street feels like the right space for the clothing, which has an independent, thinking woman's kind of sex appeal -- not unlike neighbors like Annelore up the street. Fletcher's boyfriend -- who also helped her with Lyell -- is behind all of the woodwork in the store.

Despite confessing to be clueless when it comes to scents and beauty, Fletcher tells us that the collaboration with Tocca felt pretty right. "I vaguely remembered Tocca on Mercer Street and my friend shopping there all the time ... It's funny because when I got the phone call when they asked me, I was sitting in a friend's summer house and she had Tocca candles, and I had just been looking at them. It just felt right."

At the time, Fletcher had a five-month-old baby and had just shut Lyell a few months before, so she was relieved by the brand's more relaxed approach to opening the shop: "We'd kind of been through all the same stuff, and we just want to do whatever we want," she said.

"Now, we are doing everything," she laughs. "Of course, you get on that train."

While Fletcher spent a solid amount of time for the label's big re-launch of the clothing for Fall 2011, Spring 2012 had a tighter turn-around time, and thus represents a pretty accurate look at how the collection will feel going forward. There are about 60 pieces in the collection, from delicate silk tanks with scalloped edges to lightweight crochet sweaters to a print that Fletcher says references some stationary from 1911.

"The first idea was an envelope," says Fletcher. "There are envelope shorts and a dress. Then I always do a lot of hand crochet. I did a bag that's laser-cut and perforated -- there are a lot of open-feeling things."

While flattering basics like black capri pants were among some of our stand-out favorites, Fletcher says that the lace-cut pieces have been doing extremely well since the launch. "People actually buy the expensive, special things over the more basic pieces." 

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