J.Crew is Struggling – Should Jenna Lyons be Blamed?

Jenna Lyons

It’s no secret that J.Crew’s sales are declining. At the end of 2014, CEO Mickey Drexler admitted it had been a “tough year.” It seems more and more that people are blaming Creative Director and President Jenna Lyons. Rumors swirled in December when Page Six reported, “after a dismal earnings report that saw the company go from a net income of $35.4 million to a reported loss of $607.8 million in just a year- style icon Lyons is being ordered by her bosses to focus more on the business and less on her own brand.”

Last month, illustrator Tricia Louvar, drew a comic for The Hairpin, called “An Open Letter to Jenna Lyons.” In part, it reads, “If only I, an ordinary mother on a modest income, could afford to wear a $400 cashmere skirt, silk barely-there blouse and belt to a one-time business-casual event.” Louvar also tallied the cost of an “everyday” outfit at the retailer, and the total was $596. She says J.Crew used to carry classic pieces and now the brand “embodies Lyons’ creative-cool lifestyle” and that many women aren’t able to relate to it.


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Abra Belke, who blogs under the pseudonym Belle for Capitol Hill Style, told Page Six, “When Jenna started, people were excited because it was different. But in the last three or four years, it got ridiculous. I think the brand is more and more out of touch- it seems to be going through an identity crisis.”

Interestingly, sales at Madewell, J.Crew’s sister company, are increasing and new stores are popping up this year. A J.Crew spokeswoman declined to comment on the situation, but rumors are running rampant.

– Claire Mykrantz

Source: NY Post, Jezebel 

Image: Man Repeller 

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