Lacroix’s non-fairytale ending, J.C. Penney and Mango, Designer rentals, Yoox IPO, McCartney meets Morrissey

End of a fairytale: Christian Lacroix fashion house to strip down (Guardian) “Christian Lacroix, the celebrated French designer whose fantastical creations and luxurious image captured the decadence of its age, was told today that the fashion house he founded over two decades ago is to cease making haute couture.” J.C. Penney Is Betting Big By Adding A European Flair (WSJ) “J.C. Penney Co.may be making its biggest

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Sustainability in vogue, Ted Baker’s profits drop, Haute not out, Inditex sales up, Stella on ecology

Ted Baker advertising campaign | Source: Ted Baker

Sustainability is back in fashion (IHT) As the industry redefines the meaning of luxury, “Sustainability” and “Responsibility” have become the new buzz words. Ted Baker profits fall (Drapers) Ted Baker saw pre-tax profit fall 19.5% to £17.8 million for the 53 weeks ended January 31. In Fashion, Some Like It Haute (WSJ) “Economic crisis doesn’t mean the end of luxury. But while many brands have

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A Deeper Luxe | The new ethics of luxury

LONDON, United Kingdom - Just a few years ago, the concept of Ethical Luxury was dismissed by major luxury brands. Products based on environmental concerns and fair trade principles were associated with hippies. Most fashion conscious cosmopolites wanted nothing to do with the Birkenstocks, baggy pants, and hemp T-shirts of the so-called green movement. Today the current has started to shift. With global income inequality worsening and a rapidly deteriorating environment, social issues have come to the forefront of consumers' minds. They now expect a greater commitment to craftsmanship, social causes and environmental concerns. The press is abuzz with reports of these attitudinal shifts. “Luxury Considered,” published last week by Ledbury Research on behalf of DeBeers, reported a distinct change…

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Japan’s Fast-Fashion Frenzy, McCartney’s new stores, Gap’s resurgence, Shoppers’ short attention

Japan's Fast-Fashion Frenzy (JC Report) "Japanese consumers have fallen head over heels for cheap clothing and may never turn back." McCartney Sets New Tokyo, Paris Stores (WWD) Although the brand is only seven years old, Stella McCartney has opened new stores in Tokyo and Paris. The Gap's Resurgence: Great Start to the Holiday Season (Seeking Alpha) At Gap, "spending is up significantly" for November 2008 compared to last November. Retailers Will Find It Hard to Keep Shoppers' Attention This Year (Seeking Alpha) Though Black Friday sales were impressive in the US, many analysts think that consumers wouldn't be able "to sustain their buying frenzy for the duration of the holiday season." People lining up to purchase goods at Topshop in…

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Luxury Outlook | Finding meaning in design

Back in September, The Business of Fashion caught up with noted futurist Faith Popcorn to talk to her about "recession culture," and how this changes the way consumers scrutinise spending decisions. It seems like a quaint discussion now (because of my questions, not Ms. Popcorn's answers) because our interview took place back when consumers in the U.S. were still spending. Boy have things changed since then. By the middle of October, Eric Wilson of the New York Times reported of worried U.S. consumers walking into department stores and retailers, shopping bags in hand, returning entire bags of merchandise which had been previously purchased. What's more, he went on to report of dramatic drops in sales at major luxury departments stores…

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Stella McCartney | Taking Asia by storm

Bolstered by a string of well-received collections in recent seasons, positive feedback from the sales floor, and her newly profitable status, Stella McCartney is setting her sights on Asia.  In 2007, the brand signed an exclusive distribution deal with the Lane Crawford Joyce Group to open 10 freestanding stores in China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Macao, Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia by 2012. And yesterday, McCartney announced a partnership with TSG International Marketing Pvt to open 6 stores across India, including two stores by the end of this year. Boy have things changed for the upstart brands in Gucci's portfolio. After years of operating in the red, there was much hoopla in 2007 when Stella McCartney and Alexander McQueen finally broke-even,…

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