Two esteemed names within the fashion industry have taken quite a hit this week. News broke Wednesday that the Parisian haute couture house of Christian Lacroix is filing for bankruptcy. In a piece cheekily titled, “How Clothes Brought Down Lacroix,” the Independent sums up the situation: “the creative flamboyance of the man who invented ‘le pouf’ is once again being thwarted by the constraints of commercial viability.” In other words, though critically revered for years, Christian Lacroix is an immensely skilled designer who epitomizes an exuberance that hasn’t translated well into sales (Lacroix, who “posted €10m (£8.7m) losses last year, has never once turned a profit,” adds the Independent). So, while the recession by no means is responsible for squeezing the last bits of life out of Lacroix, the economic downturn definitely hasn’t helped an the already floundering house.
In other news of fashion labels soon to be left for dead, Veronique Branqhuino announced yesterday that she will soon be shuttering the doors of her brand, James NV. The Belgian designer has been on the scene for just shy of a dozen years, and she’s garnered a strong reputation within the industry. Sadly, this is a case of recession-induced defeat: “James NV blamed a sharp drop in orders for its fall/winter 2009/2010 collections, and a plethora of canceled orders and nonpayments for the past spring/summer season,” says Women’s Wear Daily. As for Branqhuino, she’ll take on the role of “new artistic director of the 180-year-old Belgian leather goods brand Delvaux and continue as a professor at the University of Applied Arts in Vienna.”