Terry Cloth Gone Glam

juicy couture book

I can still remember the delicious thrill of buying my first Juicy Couture sweat suit. Matching sage green terry separates bought on the second floor of Bloomingdales.

Choosing a color was a major decision- all the sweats displayed by color like they were a part of Willy Wonka’s weekend wardrobe.  The allure was 100% about experience.

While the green sweats, and those that came after them, have all come and gone from my closet, Juicy Couture will always hold a special place in my fashion history book.   So when Pamela Skaist-Levy and Gela Nash-Taylor wrote a book disclosing all the crazy details of starting Juicy Couture in a tiny office in Pacoima, CA and later selling it to global powerhouse, Liz Claiborne, I was IN without question.

The Glitter Plan, How We Started Juicy Couture for $200 and Turned It into a Global Brand is an entertaining and sometimes sobering look into the rise and evolution of a brand that revolutionized the world of sportswear. I cannot recommend it enough; the book is a treasure trove of business lessons. It’s particularly rare to read, in full disclosure, the financial arrangements behind the sale of a brand to a big parent company. Pam and Gela, the Juicy Girls, bare it all.

It’s tough to narrow down my favorite quotes from the book, but here are five that really made an impact:

  1. “The trick to our success- and any success- is passion; you can’t manufacture that.”
  2. “Figure out your brand DNA. Ours was fit, fabric, and color. What is going to be your mantra, the three-to four-word guiding principle for every choice you make and thing you say about your product?”
  3. “Keep your eye on the market and how your product is positioned, and read trends. What’s new and what’s selling around your product?”
  4. “Do develop visual signatures and design codes that can carry over from one product category or licensed product to the next.”
  5. “Don’t be pushed into something that doesn’t feel like you. You are your brand.”

Skaist-Levy, Pamela & Nash-Taylor, Gela, with Booth Moore. “The Glitter Plan.” Gotham Books. 1st ed. New York, NY, 2014.

Viva La Juicy!- N.C.


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