Hello-Hello, and happy Monday!
Today we begin with a Sign of The Times that we hoped would herald a return to sanity when it comes to logos. Below, a snippet from this story in Women’s Wear Daily about luxury merchandise and markets:
“…Gucci Group would move away from logos, “adjusting to this new perception of luxury, which is more subtle, more sophisticated.”
The comments come from Gucci’s parent company, PPH; we can only hope this movement points to a diminution in the number of Logophobia attacks one suffers when in close proximity to most Gucci merchandise. Unfortunately, the “move away from logos” doesn’t appear applicable to all Gucci items.
‘Subtle’ and ‘sophisticated’ those are not. Nor are two handbags from the Fall 2010 line.
Perhaps we didn’t fully understand the company’s intent when it comes to this topic.
Next, reports that American Apparel is moving toward more ‘traditional’ styles. Sunday’s Chronicle carried a story entitled “Can Preppy Look Save American Apparel Empire?”
“After outfitting the world of 18- to 30-year-olds in all manner of T-shirts and leggings, American Apparel is going preppy, diving into more sophisticated garments such as blazers, pleated pants, button-down shirts and more formal lace tops.”
We would find the notion laughable were it not obvious this is the firm’s direction; it certainly goes in the “You Can’t Make This Stuff Up” category. But when visiting the company’s online store one notices the home page touting “Classic Guy” styles.
“Preppy” from the firm that the story notes “… remade the hipster wardrobe, sensing the demand for neon nylon bike shorts and lace-thong leotards…”? Not to mention the firm known for its overtly racy ads featuring scantily clad (or unclad) young people? (If unfamiliar with this marketing maneuver, all one need do is visit the company’s online Photo Archive to see examples.)
One of the most surprising items we saw in the men’s section, the Red Wing shoe, similar to many boat shoes, albeit with trendier lines.
American Apparel is contending with a number of issues, not the least of which is possible delisting on the New York Stock Exchange; this is compounded by its own accounting firm quitting, citing concerns over some of the company’s financial data.
Other challenges are explained in the story (which also appears in Bloomberg Business Week):
“Before the financial concerns intensified, Charney had been contending with damaging sexual-harassment allegations followed by an immigration bust. Fifteen hundred workers at the Los Angeles factory had to be let go owing to lack of documentation and 1,000 more quit over concern of being swept up for immigration violations.”
(To learn more about American Apparel’s CEO Dov Charney, click here, he has his own web page.)
One mystery amid the style changes: we don’t understand why the new direction appears targeted only to male shoppers. Visiting the women’s section of the website doesn’t indicate any evidence of a newly conservative or traditional approach.
Indeed, items the company is known for abound; most are NSFW (Not Safe for Work viewing).
To be fair, there are some basics available, like the Unisex Collared Shirts and Unisex Tees.
But by and large it seems that American Apparel’s new ‘preppy’ clothing styles are intended for the gentlemen, not the ladies.
We close with a quick look at this weekend’s benefit for the Princess Grace Foundation in the Hamptons.
On hand for the festivities (and also a co-host), Monaco’s Prince Albert II and fiancée Charlene Wittstock. Louis Vuitton was the other primary host, the event was held at the Water Mill home of Anne Hearst McInerney and Jay McInerney. Below we see Ms. Hearst and Mr. McInerney, the latter is an author we very much enjoy reading.
Monaco’s royal wedding is scheduled for July 11, 2011. For more on how Ms. Wittstock is approaching that event, we turn to Women’s Wear Daily:
“But Wittstock seems very low-key about her upcoming nuptials, scheduled for next year, even if the rest of European society isn’t. “I’m not one of those girls who imagined themselves walking down the aisle in a big dress,” she said. “My style is very easy.” Wittstock was wearing gold flip flops with her gown.”
With that we say G’bye until next time!