Spanish luxury porcelain firm Lladró has a new CEO: Sandra Jordan, who began in the fashion industry working for brands like Calvin Klein, Kenneth Cole, Gant and Salvatore Ferragamo, takes the reins in the Americas division. Her first project? Launching Lladró’s concept store in Southampton, replete with a new product line. (Hamptonites: It’s open now through the end of September.)
Jordan, who began her career in the fashion industry, went on to oversee the transformation of luxury paper brand Crane & Co., and later went on to become vice president of sales for the Robert Allen Group’s residential division. She launched her consulting and branding firm, The 42nd Parallel, last year.
Her first responsibility, she says, is something of a “cleanup”: “After assessing the market and visiting our laboratory in Spain, my first initiative is to clean up and expand the distribution in the Americas. The focus would be to reinvigorate some of our current customers, open and train new clients in the interior design and home decor world of our new offerings, and craftsmanship with porcelain. We will continue to look for partnerships and collaborate with other artists to show a different experience with porcelain, and change the stigma that we’re just a figurine brand. My first project has been the Hamptons store.”
“Her role at Lladró, the brand notes, “takes place within the framework of the company’s strategic marketing plan,” which includes a debuting Light & Scent line of small cordless lamps, porcelain diffusers and home fragrances. Also on the horizon are collaborations with artists and designers, and new product development. “The company is looking to do more pop-ups, experience new markets, and test product,” Jordan tells EAL. “The Hamptons store is a way to show Lladró in a new light and different ways to use porcelain outside of the curio cabinet. The store is like a gallery, featuring our lighting collection in chandeliers, where the customer can have a magical moment with our Niagra Chandelier hung with optic lights for a starlight affect. Complementing the chandeliers are collaborations with Jaime Hayon from Madrid, Bodo Sperlein from London, and British fashion icon Paul Smith, to name a few, along with our very own artists in Valencia creating decorative objects, sculptures and vases to adorn a home.”
The brand is not without its challenges. One of those difficulties is consumer perception. “We are refocusing the brand to be in more interior design spaces with our lighting and home decor. The challenge is removing the perception that we only do figurines. As we do more pop-up stores in key markets and train our staff across the board, we will continue to show Lladró in a new light and experience a new world with handmade porcelain.”
Speaking of adornment, Jordan’s prior background in fashion lends a certain expertise. “I feel that fashion and art are intertwined,” she tells EAL. “The artistic detail that is handcrafted in a handbag, stitched by hand on a jacket, or hand-bordered on a note card requires the same attention to detail to create a high quality product. The customer looking for quality and wanting to differentiate themselves from the masses is the same customer that wants something different in their home when entertaining or just enjoying the beauty of true craftsmanship. My experience in fashion has taught me how to respond to the discriminating consumers’ impulses, and they want the same level of finish across all products.”