The NYT's Thursday Styles' section has a lengthy profile on Brandon Holley and where she aims to take Lucky. The piece goes in depth on the reasons Holley was brought in, shedding light on the ways in which Lucky was failing. It was very informative!
Here's what we learned:
1. Brandon Holley is a bad ass and we have a serious girl crush on her. She shaved the sides of her head and wore ripped tees at punk shows at the 9:30 club in DC when she was a teenager. Then, in her 20s, she started her own Riot Grrrl band, first called Bikini Machine (a la Bikini Kill), then renamed Gangster of Love (much better), and she designed fur bikinis for her all-girl band to wear on stage. The band wasn't into the furkinis though ("There was a revolt," Holley told the Times.) She was part of the LES scene that saw Max Fish open and become the nexis of said "scene." She got into magazine writing because she was planning to write a book about her passion, American muscle cars, and ended up writing a story for Paper about them after meeting one of the mag's founders, David Hershkovits, at Max Fish. Her husband plays piano for Sesame Street. She lives in Red Hook. “I love fashion and I love clothes and I love the way people dress, but I don’t cry at a Marc Jacobs show," she says.
2. Holley will bring "more words" and "prettier models" to Lucky. When Lucky started in 2000 as a curated shopping magazine, it was ground breaking. According to the Times, it turned a profit faster than any other title in Condé Nast history and spawned many imitators. But then it stuck with that same formula year after year and ad pages plummeted in 2009 prompting founding editor Kim France's ousting and Holley's installment. To shake things up she says she plans to give stories a little more meat and use more conventionally attractive models to lure advertisers back.
3. Watch for Luckymag.com to become a “social shopping experience.” We already reported on how Holley plans to bring bloggers into the mag, launching a fashion and beauty blog network called “Lucky Style Collective." More on this from the NYT: "Ms. Holley wants to transform Luckymag.com into a “social shopping experience,” akin to eBay and etsy.com, where readers can create their own digital boutiques, perhaps giving a page in the print edition every month to the woman whose boutique sells the most." 4. Two Lucky spinoff titles are in the works. Even though Condé editorial director Tom Wallace called Lucky a "gnarly little problem,” the publishing powerhouse plans to invest in the brand with spinoff titles Lucky Kids and Lucky Home set to launch later this year.
5. The reign of the "boho" look is over at Lucky. The Times cites part of the problem with the old Lucky was the forcing of the "boho" look down readers' throats well past the point where it was cool. The article singles out Lucky's former creative director, Andrea Linett, who just moved to eBay, as the leading culprit. Holley is not boho: “I’m not really a boho kind of looking gal, so we’ll move away from that,” she said.
Lucky's first redesign after enlisting the talents of Andy Spade debuts in March, with Heidi Klum on the cover. We're looking forward to it. Oh, and you probably noticed that Lauren's quoted in this piece. She's really not that bitchy IRL.