Today’s Fashion Headlines. December 2, 2011

December 2, 2011 • Fashion, Fashion Blog

Adam Lippes could be in trouble, retailers still in trouble, and Simpson sisters start a new girls line

Kellwood Stops Financing Adam

Kellwood, the apparel firm, has decided it will no longer fund the Adam business started by Adam Lippes, the first disposal since Michael Kramer left Kellwood as chief executive officer to join J.C. Penney Co. Inc. as chief operating officer. Kramer had effectively remade Kellwood as a contemporary-focused group with a string of acquisitions that included Adam. And according to sources, Stephen Walmsley is also gearing up to leave Kellwood.

Market sources weren’t surprised by the news about the disposal of Adam, noting Kramer was the one who had championed and spearheaded Kellwood’s acquisition strategy. A few even speculated whether Kramer’s strategy could become undone now that he’s no longer there, with more disposals possible. And with the departure also of Walmsley, a few are questioning whether Kellwood would even continue on its acquisition spree. Adam had planned pre-fall showings next week, and those have since been canceled.

Retailers Still Worried About Sale Season

Retailers pulled out all the stops on Black Friday, giving shoppers the nudge they needed to boost November comparable sales, but last weekend’s windfall wasn’t enough to quell fears of a tepid Christmas. Some analysts said that, barring Black Friday, November was downright sluggish and spoke volumes about the state of the consumer, particularly budget shoppers. Others pointed to hints of a slowdown in luxury spending, which began to emerge last month.

“Black Friday was strong, but the overall November results, including the entire month, were not as strong, reinforcing our belief that the lulls in demand and mall traffic between key shopping periods are becoming more challenging as customers wait for new promotions and events to entice them to buy,” said Nomura retail analyst Paul Lejuez, who said he expects a “significant” pause in shopping between now and Christmas.

Overall in November, retailers posted a 3.2 percent comp increase helped by Black Friday initiatives such as steep discounts, longer store hours, price matching, free shipping and aggressive marketing campaigns, according to the International Council of Shopping Centers.

Simpson Sisters Have a New Girls’ Line

Jessica and Ashlee Simpson celebrated the the launch of their new girls’ line under the Jessica Simpson label, which hit stores for holiday in New York yesterday. Proceeds from the sale of a specially designed T-shirt will benefit Baby Buggy, the charity founded by Jessica Seinfeld, who attended the party with her daughter.

Jessica called the new girls’ collection, being produced by The Jones Group Inc., “a combination of both of our styles. She [Ashlee] is very rock ’n’ roll, and I’m very American.” She also said she just signed a deal for a maternity line, and will also be designing girls’ footwear. And should she give birth to a boy? Boys’ clothing is a possibility, too, she added.

– Taneisha Jordan

Source & Photo: WWD

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