A private little thought I've had for the past couple of years is surfacing in a big way, and it seems I'm not alone: J.Crew, you have gone too far. At the helm of a brand myself, I am always struggling with striking the balance of what's fresh and forward while being mindful not to alienate my core customer. Despite the fact that by and large, I love the fresh direction Jenna Lyons has taken the 'Crew, styling in the brand's catalogs has been a little overly editorial and not (God, I never thought I'd be saying this) catalog enough. For a label that grew it's roots in classic American sportswear, the beauty of JCrew was always in it's simplicity and approachability. With each catalog that came to my mailbox, I was growing increasingly weary of exhaustive layers, clashing prints topped off like a Pinkberry cup full of fruity pebbles with a whole plethora of "too much" - big sparkly baubles, gaudy statement jewelry... it was all fun, but it was borderline tacky... and J.Crew is usually where I know I can safely evade that word.

I'm thrilled the company - to their credit, always finger-on-the-pulse of shifting tides (in layman's terms: they listen to their customers) - recognizes that this once-exciting direction has hit the point of over-saturation, and they are wisely taking the opportunity to pull back. The Fall catalog features lots of smart layering, clean lines, and reliable color combinations: black and white, denims and blues... less kook, more understated. I'm all about a little irreverence here and there, but it's like I said last week: you just can't beat a classic. Unless it's a Birkenstock... in which case, I will beat you with it.

Picks from the new (old) 'Crew...


3 comments:

Joy said...

I still love J Crew but I do agree: everything looks overdone.

Taylor Davies said...

Dead on lady. That said, GIMME THAT WHITE PEA COAT SO I CAN IMMEDIATELY SPILL ON IT. ugh.

miss garlic said...

well said, as always! one has to wonder when sequins on a chambray shirt went from a unique spin, to trying too hard - i suspect that also happened when the price equaled 30% off of $118.

okay, maybe not the best item for example. but seriously, j crew used to be on par with many other mass retailers whose prices are still level with each other. at the end of the day, j crew is not ralph lauren and never will be. what are they trying to do?