Mink or Fox? The Trench Gets Complicated (WSJ) “Signaling how interactive the online shopping experience has become, Burberry, the British fashion label, is offering a way for customers to design and order custom trench coats online. Called Burberry Bespoke, the program is a full-scale attempt at “mass customization,” a long-time goal of retailers and unusual for a designer fashion house. Customers select the cut
The Prince of Polo (Fast Company) “By associating Ralph Lauren with new digital technology, David has done more than imbue the brand with a current vibe. He has, in the process, made the company a progressive leader among fashion peers. In 2009, David produced an online-only fashion show for Ralph Lauren’s heritage Rugby brand that, for the first time ever, allowed viewers to shop the looks in real time.” Red Faces at Louboutin?
Dowdy Department Stores Start Looking Cool Again (WSJ) “The sector, long derided for dowdy merchandise, maze-like stores and crumbling facades, is making a comeback. Macy’s Inc., Nordstrom Inc. and Kohl’s Corp. are posting solid sales gains even as consumers remain cautious and manufacturing costs rise—and they are poised to continue the streak this fall.” Lagerfeld for the Masses, Again (On the Runway) “Macy’s unveiled its
Designed by You, Made by … Who? (NY Times) “Do-it-yourself Web sites are making it easy for fashion buffs to design and order custom outfits: all you need is an Internet connection and a credit card. But are the sites any good? Can design-your-own jeans rival designer jeans? Is the shoe of your dreams mere mouse clicks away?” The investor’s dilemma: etail vs the brand (Material World) “An announcement of a
‘English,’ With Irony (IHT) “Yet although there have been the usual glancing references to tweed, cable knits, plaids and country clothes, the real story lies with a young, techno-savvy generation. The prints that grow more sophisticated each season are light-years from the classic patterns of roses ’round the door. But they are only a click away from a student with a smartphone and digital skills.” Olivier
J.Crew agrees to $3bn takeover (FT) “J.Crew, the US retailer with a preppy style, has agreed to be acquired by TPG Capital and Leonard Green & Partners in a $3bn deal… The two funds have agreed to pay $43.50 per share in cash for J Crew.” Divergent paths for US consumers as holidays near (AFP) “Americans appear to be shaking off the gloom heading into the holiday season with recession no longer hanging
Styles and Strategy That Defy Convention (WSJ) “Investors have their own expectations, and their cash often puts them in the driver’s seat. It’s a common theme in fashion—designers [who part] with the investment partners whose visions didn’t end up coinciding with the designers.” Macy’s Gets Fast Fashion (NY Times) “Any retailer on earth would just about die to create the kind of consumer craze
Chanel’s luxury dream is turning to dust (Marketing Week) “According to the company’s 2010 estimates… [Chanel] lost 11% of its brand value over the past 12 months. It’s a rare glimpse into the actual state of Chanel’s brand health.” Chinese spending power underestimated, study says (Market Watch) “Chinese households have far more money than previously thought… property companies and even European