July 17, 2015

Vineyard Vines Spreads to Memphis

By David Flaum
– Commercial Appeal –

Almost as quietly as vines grow, vineyard vines, the retailer of bright-colored, preppy fashion, opened its first Memphis store Friday.

The joint venture with Oak Hall, which has sold vineyard vines goods for several years, is next to the Oak Hall store in Regalia Center.

"We’ve been working on this for three months and it all came together this week," said Bill Levy, co-owner of Oak Hall.

The grand opening won’t be until March 2, but the doors opened to customers Friday.

For business, anyway.

"We had people knocking on the doors the last three days," said Cameron Gammill, vineyard vines’ manager of retail stores. They even let a few in to help unpack boxes, he said.

The low-key opening will allow the retailer to work out the usual kinks, said Ian Murray, who founded Stamford, Conn.-based vineyard vines with his brother Shep.

Murray sees the Memphis store’s prospects even brighter than when the deal to open it was struck late last summer.

The Oak Hall and vineyard vines folks hope to use the grand opening event to raise money for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, a charity Oak Hall has long supported, Levy said. Pediatric oncology is also an interest of the vineyard vines leaders, he said.

The store may set aside a percentage of sales revenue for grand-opening week for St. Jude and try to give St. Jude patients gifts — hats or shirts — from the store, he said.