Fashion

A Dossier on the Demise of Juicy Couture

What went wrong? Canadian Business recently tracked the rise and fall of the house of velour; here are five valuable takeaways from the piece

Juicy Couture

1. There is nothing that two women with $200 and a dream can’t achieve Juicy Couture founders Pamela Skaist-Levy and Gela Nash-Taylor started the line in 1997 with $200 and a revolving line of credit. Eight years later, they sold it to Kate Spade & Co. for $53.1 million.

2. A forgiving waistline + a little razzle-dazzle = ka-ching Forget the bling and the girly colours, the real appeal of Juicy’s iconic tracksuit—at least once it had been sanctified by celebrity—was its elastic waistband, a low-rent concession to comfort that was perfectly concealed by a load of stylish razzle-dazzle. Skaist-Levy and Nash-Taylor may have unconsciously understood the powerful appeal of a forgiving waistband from past experience—the twosome started out as maternity wear designers.

3. The velour tracksuit and the rise of tabloid culture went hand in hand Sometimes a label just manages to meld with the zeitgeist. That was the case with Juicy, which emerged on the scene just as the public became interested in seeing celebs perform mundane daily tasks. The suit became a sort of ‘Celebs they’re just like us’ uniform, with everyone from J.Lo to Kim Kardashian sporting the then-upmarket leisure look.

4. Madonna made Juicy cool Paris Hilton and other B-, C-, and D-listers may have made the look popular, but Madonna gave it legit fashion cred. Canadian Business cites Madge’s wearing a custom Juicy tracksuit back in 2000 as a turning point for the label.

 5. The zeitgeist is great—until it turns on you The label, sadly, didn’t really evolve with the ever-changing times, which eventually craved a little more subtlety and sophistication. While bling was most definitely in during the late ’90s and early 2000s, the culture soon grew tired of crystal-emblazoned backsides.