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Barneys Installs Black Awnings to Announce the Reign of Mark Lee

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He's booted longtime women's fashion head Julie Gilhart, he's "promoted" creative director Simon Doonan to a less central position within the company, and now new Barneys CEO Mark Lee has even switched the flagship's iconic red awnings. WWD reported this morning that the new black canopies will go better with the brand's black shopping bags, but we can't help but be reminded of a pirate unfurling the Jolly Roger—the message seems to be "There's a new guy sailing this ship."

Lee also plans to renovate the flagship's main floor, launch a new black and white ad campaign (look for it this Sunday in the Times Style section), and add a section about store development to the Barneys website. Also, in a move that's as shocking as the ouster of Gilhart, Lee plans to drop Barneys is dropping Prada bags and RTW from the chain. Barneys will continued to sell Prada menswear and women's shoes, but if you want that striped stole from the Rihanna video, you'll have to look elsewhere.

Update: A Barneys spokesperson clarifies to Fashionista that the Prada decision was made before Lee came on board, and stems from a dispute about leasing.
· Two Longtime Execs Out at Barneys; Is Simon Doonan Next? [Racked NY]
· Barneys Names New Creative Director, Promotes Simon Doonan [Racked NY]
· Barneys Boots Prada Women's + Other News [The Shophound]

Barneys New York, Madison

660 Madison Avenue, Manhattan, NY 10065 (212) 826-8900 Visit Website

Prada - Soho

575 Broadway, New York, NY 10012 212-334-8888 Visit Website