It’s safe to say that J.Crew’s print catalog is as iconic as the brand itself. For devout shoppers, this style bible that features the brand’s most covetable pieces in the chicest of scenarios has been the stuff that preppy America is made of. (Think: white shorts peddling through green fields; crisp, rolled khakis on breezy beaches; stripes on yachts, and so on.)
For the company, that means they’re scaling back. For starters, the branding mailer will feature far less pages and will be separated into his and hers versions. (Which, considering the gender-fluid era we’ve evolved into feels a bit antiquated.) This decision is said to leave a little more funding for J.Crew’s digital initiatives. While this doesn’t mean the iconic style guide won't be eliminated entirely, it does seem like the possible beginning of the end for the book, considering this tumultuous time for the brand.
Despite this major change, it shouldn’t come as a surprise. Earlier this month it was announced that CEO Millard “Mickey” Drexler would be stepping down.
“I have been here for 14 years," Drexler told WWD. "I thought it was time to move on and lessen up on the day to day. The plan had been in motion for some time. I told the board a year ago I was ready."
The news came only two months after Jenna Lyons, creative director, president, and the brand’s most iconic spokesmodel, left after working for J.Crew for 25 years.
"It has been beyond my wildest dreams to work with such an amazing team of people at such an incredible brand and alongside Mickey — one of retail’s most talented visionaries," Lyons told BoF in April. "I am excited about the next chapter for J.Crew as well as the opportunity for other creative leaders within the organisation to step up and take on new responsibilities."
In April, a number of jobs were also eliminated from J.Crew Group's headquarters. Surely, the catalog changes are just a taste what's to come for the brand.