More American Apparel Musings

070315_fash_aa2_2If you are reading this page you won't want to miss Lucinda Rosenfeld's clever observations on American Apparel's global plans at Slate. She writes:

One recent afternoon, as I combed the racks at American Apparel, I realized that I owned a substantial portion of the collection—in 1981, at the age of 11.

An insightful essay on the controversial company's potential and potential limitations.
American Apparel Goes Global by Lucinda Rosenfeld (Slate via The Daily)

American Apparel in Year-End Sale

19deallarge1American Apparel, the once novel, now ubiquitous clothing company has been sold to an investment firm for $382.5 million. Its new owner, The Endeavor Acquisition Corporation is a publicly traded company, and will be retaining the services of founder and CEO Dov Charney. Endeavor is committed to continuing AA's rapid retail rolloutAaphoto that has reached 145 stores including 15 in New York City despite the fact that the company's growth has slowed considerably over the last year. While Charney is widely believed to be the creative force behind the brand, his management style has been controversial, and has attracted a multiple sexual harassment lawsuits. Their provocative ads, most shot by Charney have also attracted criticism for evoking an amateur porn aesthetic. In Fact, The New York Times reports that as a result of the lawsuits, American Apparel employees must now sign a document that declares: “American Apparel is in the business of designing and manufacturing sexually charged T-shirts and intimate apparel, and uses sexually charged visual and oral communications in its marketing and sales activity.” Sounds like something you would sign to work at Penthouse, not a t-shirt company. The Shophound will be interested in seeing how the company evolves as part of a publicly owned corporation when its retail network has been expanded to a projected 800 or more units (hopefully somewhere other than here).

Provocative Retail Chain Is Acquired by Andrew Ross Sorkin and Michael Barbaro (NYTimes)

previously, American Apparel Overload

American Apparel Overload


Is it just us, or has American Apparel turned the corner from brash indie upstart to ubiquitous corporate behemoth like the Gap, bulldozing its way onto every corner? Especially after taking a closer look at their corporate policiess, they are starting to bug us, and those pseudo porn ads are just tired!
This time, it appears they have displaced one of the city's best Army Surplus stores, Weiss & Mahoney, a longtime lower Fifth Avenue merchant. We hope W&M will reopen in a new location, because AA is starting to become just as homogeneous and predictable as the stores they are trying to compete against.

Fashion News: Melillo Revives Himself

Nova1Indefatigable designer Tony Melillo is back again. The former Esquire stylist who created the Nova label in the Nineties, then launched a signature collection, then closed it to revive the fortunes of Generra, is relaunching his own label this fall. It will be a menswear collection to start, and we will find it in November at Bergdorf Goodman and Scoop in New York. Considering that this is someone who helped to take Generra from an 80's relic to a must-have line, it will be something worth anticipating.
Melillo Sets Signature Men's Collection (WWD)

Embattled American Apparel founder and all-around perv eccentric Dov Charney is demanding that a 10-page expose soon to be published in Clamor magazine be retracted. Fishbowl NY tells us that the Ohio-based quarterly takes a close look at AA's corporate practices and a critical view of what the company claims to be a progressive business model. For their part, the magazine refuses to retract the piece. Clamor co-founder Jason Kucsma says, "That a social justice magazine with a yearly operating budget of less than $150 thousand is being issued an ultimatum by a company that turned $250 million in profit last year seems a little incongruous to me." This would be only the latest in a series of unflattering stories about Charney after The New York Times Magazine's piece earlier this year, and a recent report on ABC News 20/20.
American Apparel Seeks Retraction Of 10-page Exposé, May Seek Legal Action (Fishbowl NY includes PDF download of article in question)

Deborahharryhomepagecoverimage M.A.C Cosmetics  has announced the latest group of beauties for the next edition of Viva Glam lipstick benefitting the M.A.C AIDS Fund. The Daily tell us that the group includes Rock and Roll heiress Lisa Marie Presley, rapper, actress and erstwhile designer Eve, stripper burlesque performer and Marilyn Manson spouse Dita Von Teese and the still gorgeous Blondie icon Deborah Harry. We will start seeing the ads in October, and The Shophound can't wait to see Harry's photos. Just 'cause we love her.
Mistresses of M.A.C (The Daily)