Ivanka Trump may be a member of the first family, but her new political status isn’t doing much to revive her failing fashion line. While the brand has come under fire lately, with many of President Trump’s critics boycotting his daughter’s products, the trouble began years ago.
According to Nordstrom, the department store made the decision to drop Ivanka’s line due to declining sales throughout 2016. People shared an official statement from Nordstrom.
“Over the past year, and particularly in the last half of 2016, sales of the brand have steadily declined to the point where it didn’t make good business sense for us to continue with the line for now. We’ve had a great relationship with the Ivanka Trump team. We’ve had open conversations with them over the past year to share what we’ve seen and Ivanka was personally informed of our decision in early January.”
While many people, including President Trump, have used Nordstrom’s decision to politicize Ivanka’s fashion line, there has been less focus on the troubles the brand has faced over the years which have contributed to its decline.
In 2011, a cease and desist letter was sent to Ivanka Trump after the discovery that a pair of wedge sandals from her line was a near-exact replica of a pair by Derek Lam. New York Magazine reported that Derek Lam’s chief executive officer, Jan-Hendrik Schlottmann, said, “We have seen very similar copies before but we have never seen a shoe that perfectly copied. It’s such an investment to make a shoe … we had to protest this.”
In 2016, another shoe company, Aquazzura, filed a lawsuit claiming that the design for their “Wild Thing” stiletto sandal was copied by Trump.
One of the most disturbing things in the fashion industry is when someone blatantly steals your copyright designs and doesn't care. You should know better. Shame on you @ivankatrump! Imitation is NOT the most sincere form of flattery. #aquazzura #ivankatrump Proud of mine #madeinitaly #italiansdoitbetter ????????????????????????
A post shared by AQUAZZURA by Edgardo Osorio (@aquazzura) on
Ivanka Trump also drew criticism from PETA for the use of rabbit fur in one of her company’s hat designs. According to PETA, the fur was sourced from China where the rabbits are kept in cruel conditions before being slaughtered for their fur. They posted a letter to Trump on their official website.
CNN reported that the”Genuine Rabbit Fur Pom Cable Knit Beanie” was being sold at a 49 percent discount in January 2016 on the website for Nordstrom Rack — the same company which would pull her products a year later due to poor performance.
Ivanka did her best to use her father’s presidential campaign to boost sales, using public appearances to wear items from her line. She appeared at the July 2016 Republican National Convention decked out with clothes from the Ivanka Trump Collection, posting pictures from the event on her personal website and social media accounts with links so that visitors could replicate her RNC styles.
Ivanka’s latest business woes are simply the latest in a long line of problems plaguing her fashion line. Her father has been quick to defend her, calling her line being pulled from Nordstrom’s shelves “unfair.”
My daughter Ivanka has been treated so unfairly by @Nordstrom. She is a great person -- always pushing me to do the right thing! Terrible!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 8, 2017
According to the Los Angeles Times, 44 percent of Ivanka Trump’s products are “being sold at prices that are on average 49 percent off.”
Senior fashion and retail market analyst at Edited, Katie Smith, said that Trump’s brand has “low market penetration.” Her products have seen steeper price cuts on average when compared to the total number of discounted goods in the U.S.
Ivanka Trump has taken a formal leave of absence from her company to join her husband, Jared Kushner, in Washington as he serves as senior advisor to the president.
[Featured Image by Drew Angerer/Getty Images]