As the editor of Retail Dive, it’s my job to keep tabs on every piece of retail-related news—the good, the bad, and the silly. From a more human Barbie to some Apple store tweaks, below are some of the most interesting reads from the past week.
Barbie speaks up
Barbie wants to be your best friend—and the most popular toy of the year. New York Times Magazine's James Vlahos details the making of Mattel’s Hello Barbie, which uses artificial intelligence to fashion Barbie as more than a plaything—she’s your talking, joking, and always-smiling companion. CNET's Ben Fox Rubin interviews the toy:
Kohl's goes after 'Generation Double Tap'
Lauren Conrad—of Laguna Beach, the Hills, and Kohl’s fame—debuted her first New York Fashion Week collection this week. The show, which went on sale at Kohls.com immediately afterward, included looks that are “tailor-made for Generation Double Tap,” according to Vanity Fair reporter Josh Duboff.
That new Apple look
The Verge tracked down some of the first pictures of an Apple store designed by chief design officer Jony Ive, who announced in May that he will focus on product design and the look and feel of Apple stores. While many of the traditional glass and light wood accents remain, differences include giant potted trees and an accessory wall made of drawers. You can see pictures here.
Another week, another sportswear company looking to attract women with a new line of fashionable athleisure. New Balance will launch the NB Women line this fall, Bloomberg reports, featuring on-trend designs with understated logos and new fabrics.
The techy truth
Although Target’s move to offer free or subsidized FitBits to all of its workers was generally lauded by the press, CNBC stepped in and reminded everyone that usage of the devices has seen mixed results.
Buzzfeed’s Sapna Maheshwari pokes some fun at the new line for teens from Restoration Hardware, RH Teen. With wares including a $600 leather bean bag to a $1,299 chandelier, it’s everything a selfie-loving, casually-guitar-strumming teen with a never-ending discretionary allowance would want.