COVID-19 has just claimed its latest fashion victim. After a four-year run, fashion label Sies Marjan is closing its doors for good.
According to a company statement obtained by Business of Fashion, the brand cited the "significant" financial impact from the global pandemic as the cause. "What we have worked on has been a dream come true," the brand's founder and creative director Sander Lak said in a statement. "Thank you to everyone who has given their time and talent to Sies Marjan over the years."
Lak, who launched his label in February 2016 to great acclaim, had some of the most anticipated shows of New York Fashion Week thanks to his masterful use of color and relaxed silhouettes. He was also the recipient of the 2018 CFDA Swarovski Award for Emerging Talent. (He started his career working for Dries van Noten in Belgium.)
The brand was backed by billionaire couple Nancy and Howard Marks, who also bankrolled the acquisition of luxury label Ralph Rucci. (They ended up parting ways with the designer.)
According to editor Lauren Sherman, Sies Marjan had plenty of things going for it but also lacked in other areas. "What it had: A cool designer liked by editors and buyers. A billionaire backer," she said. "What it didn't have: Proper distribution. (It launched with Barneys.) The synergistic resources luxury groups have, like retail, marketing, sourcing, production, talent etc etc."
"I think the American fashion system has some real soul-searching to do in terms of how we fail these designers, honestly," said Fashionista editor Tyler McCall. "Covid didn't help anything for sure but I think the problems run deep here."