After only a year into its much anticipated relaunch, British label Ossie Clark has announced its plans to close. Clothing business veteran Marc Worth had picked up the struggling company in 2007 from former owner since the sixties, Alfred Radley. Worth was intending to revitalize the brand into a global enterprise and planning on investing, according to Worth, a "seven-figure sum" into the project.
The Ossie Clark label was iconic during the sixties and seventies. The romantic prints and impeccable tailoring caused the line to become practically the uniform for London's swinging sixties era. Clark was highly regarded in his heydey, once known as “King of the Kings Road." Clark’s signature style was fluid, often biased-cut shapes that were distinctive with their full sleeves, swingy skirts and scoop necks. After his death in 1996, Clark's designs were still lauded by the frontlines of the British fashion scene like Kate Moss and Zandra Rhodes, though business-wise, the company never remained stable for very long. The label was declared bankruptcy in 1983 and Clark himself was living in government subsidized housing at the time of his death.
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The relaunch of the label was supposed to involve pairing the timeless elements of Clark's original designs with a more modern aesthetic. Designer Avsh Alom Gur signed on to head up the new collections which debuted in February 2008 for London fashion week. But Gur's printed, color-drenched designs received mixed reviews and he eventually left this past March to focus on his namesake line, his last collection having been fall 2009. With the critics unimpressed and the buyers few and far between, Worth has had no choice but to pull the plug on his aspiring business venture. A spokesman said yesterday, “Due to market conditions, developing the business has been challenging and the decision has been made to cease trading." So Clark will go down in the fashion history books as one of the geniuses of his day, and we'll just keep or fingers crossed for the likes of Escada and Christian Lacroix.
Article Source: WWD
Photo Source: newyorkmag