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Breaking: Claiborne by John Bartlett to Close

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Earlier today, Liz Claiborne announced that it would be sold exclusively at JC Penney stores nationwide starting next season, and giving the rights of the Isaac Mizrahi-designed line Liz Claiborne New York to QVC. Upon hearing the news, we wondered about the fate of Claiborne by John Bartlett, their well-received new menswear line. Just now, we got our answer: According to the Vice-President of Public Relations at Claiborne, John Bartlett for Liz Claiborne will no longer exist.

In an e-mail to us, she explained:

We have enjoyed a great partnership with John Bartlett over the past few years and he was the driving force behind the reinvention of our Claiborne men’s business, bringing the brand both critical and editorial success that it had not seen in years. Our inability to get traction with this brand re-launch is not a reflection of the design vision or even of the reaction to the product. It is more a reflection of the state of the men’s apparel business in general – too many brands and labels in the space and a strong drive by retailers to rationalize vendors. John is a strong and talented menswear designer and we wish him the best.

Rest in peace, Claiborne by John Bartlett. We hardly knew ye.—Phillip Picardi
· J.C. Penney Commits to Liz Claiborne, Pushes Isaac Mizrahi to QVC [Racked]
· Offsite: Bartlett Brings Detail to Department Stores [Racked]