Bill Blass Kills Womenswear Line
Bill Blass is immediately ending its womenswear team, just a month before its NYFW Spring 2013 showing. Designer Jeffrey Monteiro and his team of nine were all let go on Thursday. Despite having 90 percent of the upcoming collection purportedly completed and no cues as to why the Blass women’s line was to be axed, Monteiro and crew were dismissed by Scott Patti, president of Bill Blass Group. Severance packages were not mentioned at the time of firing. Patti on Monday deferred comment to a spokesman for the brand.
“We are going to take a break this season and not show the women’s collection. We are very happy with the editorial and all of the licenses are in place,” the spokesman said. “We are going to reevaluate and make an announcement in the near term.”
As for the cancelled runway show: a venue, PR company, and production firm had already been secured; in Blass’ NYC HQ, a quarter million dollars worth of Italian textiles remain, likely purchased for use in upcoming collections. Fall deliveries of the Bill Blass women’s collection will not be affected and the label has not decided whether a spring line will be produced, according to the spokesman. Surprise seems to be the widespread sentiment among former employees regarding the decision to shutter, though an outside consultant was brought in three months ago to review the label’s business viability. The label has been owned by Peacock International Holdings since 2008.
Pink Faces Cover Girl
Of all the people to head a makeup campaign… this isn’t the first choice that comes to mind but actually makes sense and a little long overdue. Singer Pink has been tapped by Cover Girl for the brand’s latest campaign.
“She’s an awesome addition to our Cover Girl family,” a company rep said. People Magazine reports that Pink’s first order of business will be to promote what the brand is calling a “bold new mascara innovation,” and she will continue to represent “beauty with an edge” in all of her campaigns with her signature pink hair.
Betsey Johnson Starts Dresses Again!
Three months after Betsey Johnson LLC filed Chapter 11, Betsey Johnson has joined forces with The Levy Group to launch a dress line that will debut in stores this spring. Johnson will unveil what is said to be “solid and printed sexy, flowing dresses” during her retrospective runway show next month. The new line is a collaboration between Johnson and The Levy Group’s design director, Suzi Chin. The Betsey Johnson dress line will retail between $99 and $249 and will be sold in better boutiques and department stores.
In late April, it was revealed that Betsey Johnson LLC would close the bulk of the designer’s boutiques and about 350 staffers were let go. At that time, Johnson, who is creative director of her brand, and Steve Madden, founder of Steven Madden Ltd., which owns the designer’s intellectual property, said the apparel would be taking a new direction. In May, Gordon Brothers Retail Partners and Hilco Merchant Resources joined forces to liquidate Betsey Johnson inventory.
– Taneisha Jordan
Source: WWD; People