Home / Celebrity Style / Marc by Marc Jacobs: is it the end of the line?

Marc by Marc Jacobs: is it the end of the line?

Marc by Marc Jacobs, the designer’s secondary line, could be closing. According to a story on fashion news site WWD, the cheaper brand will be subsumed into the main Marc Jacobs label. The idea behind the change is that Marc Jacobs will now run the gamut of designer fashion from very high-end luxury to almost high-street prices. Some Marc by Marc Jacobs products – purses, T-shirts, lip balm – retail for less than £20.

Models on the Marc By Marc Jacobs autumn/winter 2015 catwalk. Photograph: Antonio de Moraes Barros Filho/FilmMagic

This is something of a surprise within the industry – the brand is thought to bring in 70% of revenue for the business. It is also in the spotlight once again thanks to British designers Luella Bartley and Katie Hillier. They were made design directors of Marc by Marc in May 2013, with a brief to regenerate the brand. Hillier was already a regular fixture in the company – she has been working with Jacobs for 10 years.

Marc Jacobs attends the Marc By Marc Jacobs show last month. Photograph: Astrid Stawiarz/Getty Images for Marc by Marc Ja

Marc by Marc was founded in 2001 and was a big commercial success for Jacobs, but it had become a bit tired, leaning on Americana staples such as prom dresses and ditsy prints. Bartley and Hillier set about adding some sass – to critical acclaim. Their third collection, shown in September, was a great combination of tradition, in the shape of William Morris fabrics, and youth-friendly slogans. It is unclear what, if any, role the duo will play in the new structure, but insiders suggest that their contract was only ever two years. They would be well-placed to now move to another company with a boosted profile from overseeing a global brand.

The change could be seen as part of a new era of Marc Jacobs. The designer stepped down from his role as Creative Director of Louis Vuitton in October 2013. This was in a bid to concentrate on his own brand, which has majority investment from Louis Vuitton parent company LVMH, with the eventual end point an IPO. At the time of the announcement, LVMH chairman Bernard Arnault said the restructure for Marc Jacobs would take two of three years. Consolidating the two businesses may be the latest move – this time to appeal to a variety of consumers under one umbrella.

About Fashion Brief