Have you heard? Vogue’s Donna Karan and DKNY patterns will no longer be available after next Wednesday, July 13th. According to the McCall Pattern Company, the licensor of the Donna Karan trademarks [the LVMH-owned Gabrielle Studio Inc.] has decided to end all pattern licensing. (Source: Facebook.)
Vogue Patterns has been publishing Donna Karan patterns since 1987. The company added DKNY patterns in 1989.
The end of both licenses makes the Spring 2016 releases the last DKNY and Donna Karan patterns.
Donna Karan announced her departure from Donna Karan International just over a year ago, saying she means to focus on her new, privately owned company, Urban Zen. Parent company LVMH will not be hiring a replacement. Instead, LVMH will be developing DKNY, which is designed by Public School’s Dao-Yi Chow and Maxwell Osborne. (See Vanessa Friedman and Jacob Bernstein, “Karan Leaving Brand That Carries Her Name.”)
After thirty years of Vogue patterns—closer to forty, if we count her work at Anne Klein—Karan’s absence will be keenly felt. But could she return soon with Urban Zen patterns? Under her agreement with LVMH, Urban Zen’s “distribution … [can]not compete with any of the Donna Karan brands.” (See Donna Fenn’s interview for Fortune.) This could account for the unprecedented end-date for the Donna Karan and DKNY patterns
, just in time for the Fall 2016 pattern launch. Update (July 7): the Fall 2016 patterns were released today, too early to avoid a distribution conflict. Perhaps for Winter 2016?
It would certainly be in keeping with Karan’s ethos if July 14th marked not just an end to the old pattern licensing, but also a new beginning. As her program notes always read, To be continued…
8 thoughts on “Goodbye Donna Karan, Hello Urban Zen?”
I am wondering if retailers will be required to return the dead stock. Or if my dusty JoAnn’s will clean out the drawers. Given what I keep finding stuck in the corners, I suspect not very well.
Interesting. I effectively learned to sew by making up DKNY patterns for Vogue in the early 1990s.
Oops I mean “DKNY for Vogue patterns.”
Oh I do hope you’re right about Urban Zen. Vogue Patterns seem to have fewer and fewer designer patterns these days; no Ralph Rucci or Zandra Rhodes in the latest release that I noticed 😦 I have been hastily acquiring a few Donna Karan patterns I’d been dithering about.
If Donna Karan sold Urban Zen patterns via Vogue patterns and part of the proceeds were donated to her foundation, it would be a win/win for all (and us!) you listening Donna?? Vogue Patterns??
Interesting post. I wonder which designer will step up, if any, to take her place?
Interesting- does Vogue have to remove the oop from the website too, I wonder….
They’ve said they do — everything from the newest to out of print.