Vera Wang’s Lavender Label Is in Trouble


Bergdorf Goodman and Saks Fifth Avenue have reportedly dropped Vera Wang's lower-priced contemporary line Vera Wang Lavender for spring. Neiman Marcus, which sold the line in 30 locations, will only sell it in fewer than ten stores, sources say. Things look even more dire for fall. Neiman hasn't placed any fall orders, while Saks dropped the line. Bergdorf will pick up the line again for fall, but that's not enough to sustain it. Wang told WWD she's considering adjusting her pricing strategy for Lavender or licensing out the label. She might also unveil an exclusive bridge line for Saks (bridge lines fall somewhere between contemporary and luxury lines, as far as pricing goes) as soon as this fall.

Though the line used to net over $50 million in wholesale, it's struggling in the economic downturn, largely because of its price point; the label retails for $200 to $800, which is high for the contemporary category. Industry sources also point out that since Prada U.S. ex-president Constance Darrow joined Vera Wang as president of creative direction last spring, the line took on a harder aesthetic. They miss the line's former light, happy spirit, which would have been more suitable for the contemporary category, they say. We don't quite understand that — in our minds dark, depressing clothes are always cooler than light, airy clothes. And who wants to look like the happy nitwit these days? Clearly looking dark and bitter is the way to go. Always. This is New York, after all.

Bumpy Time for Vera Wang Lavender [WWD]