More turbulence is afoot at J.Crew. In April, Jenna Lyons, the brand’s longtime creative director, suddenly announced her departure from the company. Somsack Sikhounmuong, who had been designing for J.Crew since 2001, would replace her. But right at the start of New York Fashion Week, Sikhounmuong has announced that he is also leaving the company. Business of Fashion first reported the news.
Sikhounmuong will not be replaced. Instead, his roles will be absorbed by a wide range of staff. This means that J.Crew will no longer have a creative director, with a distinct vision for the brand.
Over the last few years, J.Crew has seen declining sales. There were many reasons for this, including a pricing strategy that made the clothes unaffordable to their core customers and a sense of fatigue around Lyons’s eclectic aesthetic. In June, CEO Mickey Drexler was replaced by James Brett, who formerly ran West Elm.
J.Crew was among the few mainstream retailers that presented collections at New York Fashion Week. This season, it is noticeably absent from the schedule. It’s unclear what J.Crew’s future holds, but all of this tumult is certainly not inspiring much confidence.