LuLaRoe, the company that has gained a tremendous following with Generation X, Generation Y, and Millennial women, is under fire again for the release of its Americana line, a collection of patriotic prints that are on leggings, tops, and dresses. However, some people have suggested that one of the prints is actually a portrayal of the Liberian Flag, which is similar in some respects to the American Flag.
The Liberian flag is red, white and blue, but has just one star and 11 stripes. The flag featured on LuLaRoe clothing has fewer stripes but one star, leading some to believe it resembles the flag of Liberia more than an American Flag at any point in history, according to Yahoo Style.
While many call the prints questionable, the company says the prints were meant to be taken in patriotic fashion and that nothing was amiss in intent. Even so, customers are finding what they feel looks like the Liberian flag, as well as flags being worn upside down, as being “unpatriotic.” Historically, upside down flags are signals for distress, but there is debate about whether it is considered wrong for them to be printed on fabric upside down or if the problem arises when an actual flag is worn upside down.
However, not everyone is on board with criticizing the collection, including those who are critical of the way the company operates in some instances. Christina Hinks, who runs a blog called MommyGyver, is also a former LuLaRoe consultant. She says that she is not assigning wrongdoing to LuLaRoe about a possible American flag gaffe.
“I don’t think it’s fair to say a company woefully printed the Liberian flag on its Americana leggings if that wasn’t the case. The print has received criticism, but Americana in its definition is, ‘pertaining to America.’ If you have an Americana collection, it’s safe to assume it’s the good ol’ red, white, and blue. It’s when the flag is been inverted into neon colors, or if “Americana” goes pastel, that’s not Americana. The flag is red, white, and blue, not peach, lime, green, or teal.”
LuLaRoe often releases “capsules” for specific events, like Halloween, Fourth of July, or Valentine’s Day, and these items can be very popular, although there have been complaints from customers that “capsule” items are poorly made and often smaller than other LuLaRoe clothes. LuLaRoe is a multi-level-marketing company that generated $1.8 billion in wholesale sales from April 2016 to April 2017, according to LuLaRoe itself. This is the selling of clothing to “fashion retailers,” who then mark up the price and sell the clothing at Facebook “popup” parties or in-home parties.
LuLaRoe has recently partnered with Disney and will be including Disney themes on some of their clothing. The company has been under scrutiny for leggings that supposedly tear easily and are being sued for it. Their leggings are $25 a pair, and customers are complaining that some develop holes before they even put them on or with just one wear. They have also been litigated by a woman who says that they illegally charged her sales tax. LuLaRoe says that they have fixed their sales tax issue and have said that they strive for every customer to be happy, so they have begun a “happiness policy” and “make good” policy. Customers can receive gift cards for damaged items straight from the company under these new policies.
Everyone is not happy with that, though. According to Mark Stidham, co-CEO of LuLaRoe with his wife, LuLaRoe “doesn’t have much to be sorry about,” according to Business Insider.
“It’s statistically insignificant — it doesn’t exist. At the same time, I don’t want to be flippant about that. I don’t feel we have much to apologize for. I’m empathetic, and I’m sorry that [some customers] had a bad experience. But I don’t feel that the company is in a place where a blanket apology is necessary.”
[Featured Image by Joe Raedle/Getty Images]