WWD posted an incredibly long article today that boiled down to this: Marc Jacobs' Marc by Marc Jacobs collections is incredibly successful. It's celebrating 10 years and is reissuing some favorite pieces from the line to celebrate. All bow to Marc Jacobs president Robert Duffy.
The article goes on to elucidate how a lower-priced contemporary line was championed by Duffy, but initially met with resistance. Once the ever-wise Duffy did get the go-ahead from the folks at LVMH, the secondary line has been nothing but an enormous money-making machine and and a way to saturate a larger market that can't, say, buy a much higher priced collection piece. The story also follows how instrumental and dedicated Duffy is to the company, where he has acted as president since 1984, standing by Marc's side through the now infamous Perry Ellis days to his current standing as a revered design innovator for both his eponymous lines and for the luxury brand Louis Vuitton.
But really, the article focused on how Duffy's real baby is the Marc by Marc line, and how that has, in the past decade, become an integral part of the brand and how it functions. The stores, of which there are 161 freestanding in the world, have very low turnover rate thanks to the fact that it's impossible to keep merchandise from moving and employees work on an hourly-plus-commission basis, with many moving on into corporate careers and other top performers being flown around the world to Jacobs' shows and international store openings. So to toast the line, the company will release a small capsule collection of seminal pieces for consumers, who will inevitably gobble them up, as is the case with anything that has Jacobs' name emblazoned on it. So while the rest of the world seems to be complaining of the recession-induced duldrums, maybe they should look within and not blame it on the external circumstances. Some companies seem to be doing just fine.