He's booted longtime women's fashion head Julie Gilhart, he's "promoted" creative director Simon Doonan to a less central position within the company, and now newBarneys CEO Mark Lee has even switched the flagship's iconic red awnings.WWDreported this morning that the new black canopies will go better with the brand's black shopping bags, but we can't help but be reminded of a pirate unfurling the Jolly Roger—the message seems to be "There's a new guy sailing this ship."
Lee also plans to renovate the flagship's main floor, launch a new black and white ad campaign (look for it this Sunday in the Times Style section), and add a section about store development to the Barneys website. Also, in a move that's as shocking as the ouster of Gilhart, Lee plans to drop Barneys is dropping Prada bags and RTW from the chain. Barneys will continue to sell Prada menswear and women's shoes, but if you want that striped stole from the Rihanna video, you'll have to look elsewhere.
I'm a believer in the retail experience: it's theater, magic, it's function.
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