Today’s Fashion Headlines. May 29, 2012

Neiman Marcus’ New Strategy for CUSP.

Now all of Neiman Marcus stores Contempory departments will be named CUSP, and the attitude will be younger and hipper. “Our stores are very luxurious and they can be at times a little intimidating. So we want to create an area that is very high energy, feels less intimidating and is modern and fun,” Jim Gold, president of specialty retail for the Neiman Marcus Group, said to WWD. “It shows another side of Neiman Marcus.”  This along with Neiman’s profits rising up 35 percent recently, now perhaps they can afford an overhaul.

BryanBoy Officially at ANTM

We reported earlier that BryanBoy might be coming to America’s Next Top Model, but at the time, the style fashionista vehemently denied it. Well, not anymore! According to WWD, Bryan Grey Yambao will join the cast of the CBS reality television show “America’s Next Top Model” for the 19th season, which is about to commence filming in Los Angeles.

Sources close to Grey Yambao confirmed he has signed a contract and at press time was en route to L.A. with a one-way air ticket. Grey Yambao will join new cast members model Rob Evans and celebrity stylist Johnny Wujek, who have already been announced as permanent third judge and creative consultant, respectively, and publicist Kelly Cutrone, who is rejoining the show as a judge for a second season.

U.S. Spending on Decline

U.S. apparel and footwear consumers are expected to cut their spending in the two categories to $344 billion by 2020, down from $351 billion in 2010, according to projections from Euromonitor. It’s not that consumers are going to be spending less overall. The research firm predicted shoppers would boost annual expenditures by $3 trillion over the decade to $11 trillion, with increases of $730 million in spending for health goods and medical services, $412 billion for leisure and recreation and $137 billion in communications.

“People are more pleasure orientated in their budgets and I think that it’s in retaliation for the prices they have to pay for things like health care,” said Kit Yarrow, a consumer psychologist at Golden Gate University. She summed up the attitude like this: “When I’m going to buy something for fun, it’s damned well going to be fun. It’s going to feel really good. I want emotional impact for what I’m buying.”

TheOutnet.com Adding Same-Day Delivery

On June 11, TheOutnet.com will start a same-day delivery service, for a fee, to customers in London, and three days later will roll the service out to the New York City boroughs of Manhattan, Queens and Brooklyn. The Outnet.com will charge 12 pounds in London and $25 in New York for a delivery, cutting a bit into the 40 to 75 percent off regular prices typically offered.

While acknowledging the move seems incongruous with The Outnet.com’s discount proposition, Stephanie Phair, managing director, said this “premier” service fits into ongoing efforts to differentiate the Web site and leverage off the infrastructure and reputation of its London-based parent, the Net-a-porter Group, which is owned by Compagnie Financière Richemont. “We give customers the luxury treatment within a discount context,” said Phair. “In a sense, it’s all about choice. That’s where we’ve gone.”… Great. Now where’s Chicago?!

- Taneisha Jordan

Source and Photo: WWD

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