Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Can Christine Day Be Replaced Already?


Today's Wall Street Journal (Thanks to Ms. M for the photo.)

The shit seems to be really hitting the fan today regarding the pant sheerness issue. It looks like the list of recalled pants is quite extensive and extends from before March 1st (as it should). I'm not sure why the recall is only limited to black pants since the colored ones are even more problematic.

The fabric manufacturer has fired back, replying that they made the fabric to lululemon's specifications.

"The Taiwanese supplier behind the see-through yoga pants recalled by Lululemon Athletica Inc said on Tuesday it followed design specifications and the Canadian retailer had merely misjudged customer tastes."

"Eclat Textile Co Ltd, a supplier for Lululemon for more than 10 years [emphasis mine], told Reuters that "a gap between Lululemon's expectations and reaction from the market" was the cause of the problem."

"With the black Luon pant recall Lulu has now had its fourth quality control issue in the last year," Credit Suisse analyst Christian Buss said in a note to clients. "We see some potential that Lulu risks alienating its core customer base should quality control issues persist."

Excellent point, Mr. Buss - that's right, the fourth quality control issue that has surfaced in the past year. However, long time fans of lululemon know the slide started when the company went public and Day was brought on board. Changes in the fabric started shortly after, maybe about 2010-ish and really accelerated through 2011 and 2012. Once Chip left in January 2012 the slide to mediocrity accelerated. Designs have been genericized and most new products have all the charm and appeal of a big-box store product. The special omega logo has been removed or minimized to the point that you can't tell you've bought a lululemon product. Inferior, thin luon is being used in more and more designs (looking at you Forme and Daily Yoga jackets). Tops have been shortened (Swiftly tank). The famous camel-toe proof gusset design is long gone.

Day has ruined everything special about lululemon. The bullet proof quality, the fit, the femininity, the lululemoness of the product. She changed beloved, best-selling designs such as the Scuba hoodie, Power Y, Scoop Neck tank, Swiftly tanks, to name a few. Gussets on pants got changed from a diamond shape to a cheaper-to-manufacture diamond. Tops have been shortened.

She is a one-trick pony who grew the company through expansion. (I've heard that isn't going so well and that stores placed too close to each other are cannibalizing each other's sales.) I'll give her minor props for getting a website up and going but that's it.

It's time to bring in a new CEO, with a commitment to quality, who has experience in the apparel industry and an eye for style.

97 comments:

Anonymous said...

http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-wGd2NtdnflY/UQ5C3j9bXOI/AAAAAAAAI9U/ErAkjFd5KBY/s1600/citizen-kane-clapping.jpg

Anonymous said...

So Day is certainly ultimately responsible...she is helming the ship. However, what about her executive team? Who is responsible for sourcing and approving fabric? Who is the head of design? Blame should fall on investors as well, for expecting a huge ROI in such short time. Shame on Day and the executive board for bending to the investors' calls instead of staying true to the brand and building with longevity in mind.
What they did was a quick band-aid to up stock prices...but they had to know that eventually the you-know-what would hit the fan.
And it has. I personally think it's been on the fan for several months now...the market is just waking up.
I do not think Day should stay on, but not all of the blame falls on her. The head of product/manufacturing and head of design must be replaced. Whoever allowed that shoddy fabric, construction and design should be shown the door, stat. They clearly don't understand the brand or the vision.
Would profit margins be a little lower with the designs and fabrics of 2006? Yes, certainly. Would the company be crashing and burning? No.
You know that saying that pigs get fat and hogs get slaughtered?
Here you go.

Kdub said...

Sorry if this has been answered, but what is the earliest purchase date to be able to return merchandise? March 1? I

Houndlvr said...

She has one MO. She did it to Starbucks, she's doing it to Lululemon. I had more faith in Chip Wilson to appoint someone with a like-minded vision for the company...I'm surprised that he fell for her-she provided short-term eye candy for the investors, but look where it has taken her in the long run.

Lululemon should have annuled their relationship with her long ago!

RunItMyWay said...

Well said. I think Lululemon had a special share of the market - loyal customers who were willing to pay a premium price for a high quality product that was special and had a level of "uniqueness". Ever since Christine Day came in, I think she's been alienating that base and moving toward cheaper, more generic product that was more widespread. She took away what made Lulu items special in the first place. The high quality; the little features were stripped in favour of cheaper mass-production, and items were made in bulk so that when you go to the gym or the mall, a dozen other girls have the same item.

Time for some fresh blood to breathe new life into the company and revive the old grass-roots quality and feel to the company that made it so successful in the first place.

Eric said...

Yes Lulu pushed the limits. They tried to produce everything as cheap as possible hence why all the best selling products were changed to lesser quality items (Like daily yoga, scuba stretch, form jacket). These items cost significantly less to produce and more profit was made. She clearly pushed it too far when they tried to thin the luon and now its backfiring. I hope they can make those good pieces again and recover.

Aramina said...

I totally agree

Anonymous said...

Here's another interesting read: http://money.msn.com/top-stocks/post.aspx?post=d41322ab-99ff-4cbb-8cb9-e85719e4d1b5

In the article, it states:

Meanwhile, according to the Wall Street Journal, the chief financial officer of Eclat Textile Co., a Taiwanese supplier to Lululemon says their clothes were not "problematic."

The remarks came after Lululemon blamed the supplier for the "see-through" problem.

"All shipments to Lululemon went through a certification process which Lululemon had approved. The pants were manufactured according to the requirements set out in the contract with Lululemon," Eclat chief financial officer Roger Lo said.

_________________________________

I think Lulu blaming the manufacturers rather than outright apologizing for their lack of oversight makes them look really bad. It's one thing to blame the manufacturer, but Lulu has to bear some responsibility for not implementing good quality control measures.

I, too, find it fishy that they chose to announce this a few days before the earnings so investors lower their expectations for this week's meeting.

Let's hope that this ACTUALLY solves the whole sheerness problem rather than just sweeping it under the rug.

RunLikeTheWind said...

Entertaining blog post!

Unknown said...

Amen! All of us here on the blog have been saying this for almost a year now. I'm not only an old school lulu lover and obsessed purchaser but also stock owner (bought tens of thousands during their IPO). LET'S LISTEN TO THE DEVOTED CUSTOMER and get lulu back on track before it's too late!

Anonymous said...

It may sound terrible but I'm so glad that this happened. I haven't been able to buy any bottoms except Studio Crops in the last year (and it's not because of my body shape!) due to the sheerness issue. We, the core customers, have been complaining for over a year on the lll site and Facebook. And the supplier has been working with lulu for 10 years so the fault is not theirs either. They know how to produce quality fabric. So this confirms what we've been saying and Educators have been denying: the luon formula did change. Lulu gave the manufacturer specs that didn't meet customer satisfaction! Is there no marketing research done in this company? Or did they think they could train us, i.e. brainwash us, into paying $80-110 for see through pants? But since customer complaints weren't enough to bring about change on gussets or sheerness, unhappy shareholders will force lulu and Day - assuming she's still steering the ship - will have to act and fast. And in the long run, that will be the best thing for all of us lulu addicts and every other person who spends money expecting to receive a quality product.

Kirsten said...

Great blog, great reviews!
I haven't bought any lulu since after Christmas sales 2012 so I'm kind of out of the loop. (My last purchase was an awesome pair of Dance Fitness Pants, sinificantly discounted, probably, I was to discover, for the unavoidable camel toe.) The news today of the recalls tweaked my interest.

I'm curious. Why, if the quality has demised so much, do you keep purchasing?

I invested in Oct. 2008, after Day took over, then sold just after the split. I'm thinking of investing again, but would appreciate a fan's opinion.

Thanks

Anonymous said...

Why complain and continue to by their products??

Anonymous said...

@luluaddict
Isn't that unethical-Day cashing out her stocks? Isn't that kind of a similar situation to what happened to Martha Stewart?
Crazy stuff.

Anonymous said...

And to think that I have an order on the way, which contains no less than five black luon bottoms (WUP,WUC,2x Invert, Free Fall) all of which were pulled out of the website the same morning I received the shipping notification.
If I were in the US, I would just return them, but they will first get to a mail forwading service, and then redirected to me overseas. So much $ wasted. sight
Wonder why the bottoms were even shipped out in the first place...

Anonymous said...

very very well said LLA!! so spot on. i think the only clever thing here by lulu is that the sales have been off for a long time and they have the quarterly call coming so wanted to have a deflect and blame approach to explaining the drop - when we all know it is exactly what you stated in the post - nothing else to be added. as usual LLL is blaming out - this time it's the manufacturer, with previous color bleeds it was our sweat! LOL! never ever is it "you know what - we goofed up and will work hard to fix it, we own the goof" never ever - it's a very strange thing.

Anonymous said...

@anon 9:47AM- I couldn't agree with you more. My spending has declined, but I still buy products.

Also, Lululemon used to use a triangle gusset. I have a pair of WUCs from early 2009 ( they have the "this belongs to" tag inside the key pocket). They have a triangle gusset and never gave, or give me CT.

Anonymous said...

WHAT!?! cashed out 90% of her stock holdings - OMG - the writing is on the wall, our quality sucks, our financial performance is heading south - let me cash out and be on my way! WOW!!!

LuluAddict said...

A few reasons- 1- the slide has been slow and there are still decent items - Cool Racerbacks being one example , 2- the competition stll isn't there as far as fabrics and fit are concerned (or resale value, which is a huge consideration ), 3- lulu has a huge loyal following and we've been waiting for them to turn it around , 4- they have a lot of innovative other fabrics - luxtreme, silverscent, sheer luon, circle mesh. 5- There are still lulu-esque items being produced - the Don't Hurry Be Happy pullover, the Namaste tank are two examples.

Anonymous said...

If I want new to me bottoms/generally pre-owned I buy gently used off ebay to get the quality I desire...I do not even attempt any new pants...I got tired of sending them back awhile ago

Anonymous said...

Is that legal to cash in your stocks knowing there will be a decline? Isn't that basically some sort of insider trading? She's a nut job.

Anonymous said...

Thank you LuluAddict for this great blog post. I agree, 100%. I have been frustrated for so long now, like many other lulu customers, and it feels good to see my exact thoughts in print. Thank you.

Anonymous said...

Does Canada have different insider trading rules than the US?! Can she really cash out 90% of her stocks like that?

Anonymous said...

Just wanted to say that was a really well-written piece LLA...Thanks so much!

Anonymous said...

I think it is very irresponsible for LLL to blame the supplier instead of owning up to their mistake. I don't even think the supplier has to take any responsibility in this as they were only following product specs given by LLL and had no say in how/what LLL makes/design.

Kirsten said...

So? How does Lulu stack up compared to Under Armour, that you have advertised on your site?

Laura Kane said...

Hi Luluaddict, can I chat with you about this? I'm a Toronto Star reporter. You can reach me at lkane@thestar.ca or 416-869-4470. Thanks!

luluFemom said...

Well said in the post LLA, and your points @ 9:59 are exactly the reasons I have been sticking around waiting for the turnaround. (Though I told my husband to sell our shares of the stock last fall...) There's no denying that the decline observed by loyal customers follows the company going public and getting greedy for profits. If you look at companies that had a similar trajectory - a remarkable (but perhaps less-"business savvy" by Wall Street standards) visionary as founder, a huge falter/near loss of the brand upon going public, turnaround to return to the original roots: Apple, Starbucks, Specialized - I have hope that this is the turnaround point. Because, to your point #2 @ 9:59, a true competitor has yet to emerge.

Anonymous said...

Where can I get a list of recalled items?

luluFemom said...

Also worth nothing, iVivva - which has seemed to maintain the quality of their Luon in the face of lululemon's decline - has only sizes 4 & 6 available for the rhythmic crop (i.e. WUC) in ANY color. Grown-ups snatching up all the size 10-14s or this recall extending beyond lulu? ;)

LuluAddict said...

I've read Ivivva WU don't have any gusset.

Anonymous said...

I'm glad LLL is finally acknowledging this problem, although I think they're doing it in a sneaky way.....days before an earnings call, only claiming black Luon is problematic, and placing all blame on the fabric manufacturer. Usually textile mills perform quality assurance testing before fabric is sewn into garments. An apparel company will sometimes do their own in-house testing to ensure fabric/garments meet specifications. Lulu must have known about this issue for awhile (not to mention all the customer complaints) or something just plain fell through the cracks here.

Also, maybe it's just me, but I think the colored Luon and seamless fabric are sheerer than the black Luon.

Anonymous said...

It's about time! Thank you LLA. The quality issues have been mentioned on this blog many times and for a long time now. The execs at Lululemon should have been paying more attention to this blog and the comments on their website a long time ago. They could have nipped the issues in the bud before it reached this stage. We want the old Lulu back. I say bring Chip back on board!

Anonymous said...

All of this is so so true. All of my beloved items have gone down the tubes, the only things i've bought in the last 4 months have also recently had problems (speed shorts are mostly completely sheer, swiftly tanks are shortened, and now CRBs are becoming incredibly sheer too). I used to buy so so much because of the quality, and now there are reasons why I can't purchase anything, including:

- WU/WUC/groove shorts/groove pants: sheerness, triangle gusset
- inspires: first the waistband (now remedied)now the sheerness
- power y tank: didn't mind the initial move to luon light, but now they're all sheer and really horrendous quality.
-Scuba: i'm not buying the stretch, even if they finally made it a bit longer and lined the hood. The side panels are still missing and overall quality still absent.
- turbo shorts, in stride/stride jackets, define jacket: in what universe do the sheer groovy run shorts and ill-fitting cheaply made daily yoga and forme jackets act as replacements? It's like a bad joke.
- studio pants/crops: unlined colored versions also sheer.
- cabin LS: the devotion LS was a horrible replacement IMO, very thin and cheap and (GASP) sheer.
- Run: for your life crops or run:fst and free crop: now we have the fish-butt pace crop? eww.

And the icing on the cake? Almost every single one of these items (or their respective replacement pieces) has gone up in price. In some cases, way up.

It's so so sad. I've been a lululemon fan for a long time and the quality decrease in the last year has really put me off from buying. The only purchases i've made recently that I truly love the quality of is the Swiftly's, CRBs (most recent I bought was shell pink), don't hurry be happy pullover (wearing right now), and my new energy bras.

For lack of a better phrase, Lululemon needs to put up or shut up.

Anonymous said...

Lulumum's blog has a screen shot of the offending items. I'm not sure how she got a hold of it but it is still helpful nonetheless. Good luck!

Anonymous said...

THESE ARE JUST CLOTHES. Stop buying them if you want to complain about them. You all clearly have more than enough. This is just a clothing store. Nothing more. So many people become obsessed over their product and don't know when to stop.

Anonymous said...

LLA 9:44 AM, WOW interesting info!

Of course nothing with Day or LLL shocks me these days. Sheerness a well know issue to any loyal LLL customer.

http://www.cbc.ca/news/business/story/2013/03/19/business-lululemon-recall.html

http://www.lululemon.com/media/index.php?id=224

Anonymous said...

Ok, I get that the sheerness is a big issue with the new fabric, but what about the terrible pilling?!?!

Anonymous said...

Sheer Yoga pants is trending on Yahoo now.

Gosh I hope Christine Day is DONE and LULU comes back to the greatness they once had!

Anonymous said...

I'd like to hope this isn't some marketing ploy to make it seem like all these manufacturing disasters this past year have just been a "BAD BATCH" of material. Seems like they are trying to acknowledge the damage that has been done to the brand without admitting that they really have tried to shaft us, the buyers of this now overpriced garbage.
I look through my closet at all the OLD Lulu clothes and compare them to the new..it's almost obscene how cheap the clothes are now. The fabrics are flimsy and the product design and innovation as well as the manufacture of the products is now so inferior that I refuse to buy this crap.
They won't change until you refuse to buy this stuff. Keep purchasing and they won't improve.

Anonymous said...

The ivivva tights have a triangle gusset. Some of their slouchier fit bottoms do not have a gusset.
I haven't ordered any ivivva in the last few months, but I can say that their Luon has been nicer than the LLL fabric.

I am anon 9:11, and I've been thinking more about this whole mess. I had no idea Day had cashed out. That to me says she has no confidence in the company, and she's on her way out.

Second, I have decided that all of the changes were Day asserting her authority and showing this little company in Vancouver how things are really done. Perhaps she had a lot of structure and oversight at Starbucks, and she saw LLL as an opportunity to really make her mark. It's very arrogant. Unless a company is really struggling and you have to make massive changes to save it from bankruptcy or something, it doesn't make any sense to walk in and throw your weight around like that. And I agree with the person who said it's disappointing that Chip would bring her on board. Maybe she sold herself well at the time, but from where we're sitting (and have been for months), Day clearly doesn't understand the brand or the core customer. I wish I were a few years farther along in my career...I'd totally throw my hat in the ring for the job. ;)
Fingers crossed that the company can move forward, restore LLL to its former glory...and that people come back. That will be the kicker.

Anonymous said...

LLA, where are you getting the info that Day cashed out 90% of her stocks? That's a pretty serious allegation to make without a source!!!

Anonymous said...

LLL blaming the manufacturer they have worked with for years. Sure, nice try. Here's how it has gone: economize on this historically great luon. They need to make more because they are expanding globally (regardless of scarcity model). It has been getting thinner--manufactured to their specifications--and customers have continued to buy: sales and profits continued through the roof. As for the manufacturer messing with the material formula. Well, anything is possible. Yet loyal LLL customers have long identified problems with sheerness in the luon: minimum year and a half. Customers have been very vocal about feedback, whether via LLL product reviews or Facebook. It's pretty outrageous and absolutely greedy that LLL continued to ignore this feedback, especially coming from countless customers across the globe.

As for me, guess I'm glad I am good with my older luon items.

9:50 AM - don't just accept it! Email or call them, they need to make it right! As for shipping your order, I imagine the warehouse floor had no clue and was just doing their usual routine.

Anonymous said...

hey luluaddict! facebook banner got me curious and led me to

http://www.lululemonsale.ca/

my jaw dropped. fake and being advertised!

Anonymous said...

I am desperate to find a replacement brand. I purchase online, but was recently in a Lulu store. The jackets were mostly short and ugly, with color blocking as their main design. Gone the ruffles. Gone the ruching. So dismally uninspired. In addition, the seams on many items were fraying and crooked. They don't just have a sheerness issue. The quality is completely denigrated. Any new brands out there?

Amanda said...

If anything the sheerness issue has been great for eBay sellers. Ive noticed older grooves that i had my eye on selling for near retail value when they werent selling for that much last year. Maybe it's that they are looking to replace a favorite print, but i think they are looking for the same thing that i am, lulu's previous quality.

Anonymous said...

Lulu addict, YOU should be the new CEO :) I totally agree with everything you say. I used to buy at least one or two things every single upload and now I never get anything. I recently got a new practice freely and it is horrible compared to my old ones! Lululemon is not what it used to be. It makes me so sad :(

Anonymous said...

I was wondering the exact same thing. Isn't this considered insider trading?

Anonymous said...

Slippery slope is what we have been saying. Regarding Day's cashing out: so shady! Doubt it's legal. Sounds like she's on her way out.

It's weird, the latest items I purchased were the In Stride Jacket in black and the Groove Pant Tall (all black), I just had them hemmed. Both items came with the old red hangtag. I didn't know this when I ordered the In Stride and was so happy to see that tag on it. The Grooves in particular I bought because I knew they were older luon. I knew my LLL purchasing was well curbing, if not ending, due to the deteriorating quality. I still love all my gear and am OK if I have to stop for now. Hopefully whoever they bring in will set things right. Go back to the great quality and stop making the ugly stuff that nobody wants!

Kathleen said...

I'm running errands so I cannot audit it myself but activity such as this should be able to be verified on yahoo finance or a similar site. I'm going to check myself when I'm not out and about.

LuluAddict said...

All insider trading is disclosed to the SEC. I said I read on a financial board. Here are her recent transactions. People can verify what they want:

Insider Trading Info: http://www.secform4.com/insider-trading/1397187.htm

http://biz.yahoo.com/t/80/6556.html

MissesSantos said...

I foresee... LLL recalls at ROSS.

LuluAddict said...

@ Misses Santos - that will be the beginning of the end for me. Once you find it at TJMaxx or Ross I'm done. I've read they recycle or incinerate recalled items

Anonymous said...

From Forbes:

“Chip had the grace and forbearance to know he’s not CEO material,” Day said. “He gets what it means to hand something off.”

Hmmm....maybe Ms. Day was really talking about herself?

If you don't listen to your core customers and throw quality out the window, YOU are not CEO material Ms. Day.

Anonymous said...

Very interesting, thanks for tracking this LLA. Questions -

? Does anyone know where the confirmed sku/product recall list got to? There was one, it was pulled, now all returns are case by case with gec

? Was it just black luon? I'm reading no

There's something rotten at the core of all this. See ya later, integrity, this is all blame and no responsibility.

Anonymous said...

...and when Chip was still at the helmet, people in this very same blog wanted him out. Difficult crowd.

LuluAddict said...

@ anon 1:07 pm - Did they? The blog got started in 2008 when he had already hired Day. Are you referring to the John Galt bag issue? Maybe because of his shocking marketing techniques - the Mansy, Shop Naked, We're With You Kess, Say No to Camel Toe. I can see that riling people but that all happened before the quality went to hell.

Anonymous said...

Outstanding blog entry! Thank you for all the valuable information.

Eric said...

The media needs to pick up on this stock info!

LuluAddict said...

@ Eric - the insider trades are public information. I'm sure they are regularly scrutinized.

LuluAddict said...

OMG, hilarious comment on lulumum about this issue:

Laura

Those of you in Vancouver must be on the watch for white smoke coming out of Lulu HQ, signifying a new leader ;-)...

Anonymous said...

omg there's a Yahoo article on this issue *facepalm
my brothers are not taking to let me hear the end of this. they've been telling me that the brand is ripping people

Mimi said...

They've finally addressed what loyal customers have known and said for some time now. I am not surprised they tried to shift the blame to their long term manufacturer. I used to love the Lululemon brand but lately their style, price and quality has just not been there. Not to mention they tweaked so many beloved core items, often without notice. I only purchase occasionally now, still waiting for their old luster to return but their inability to accept blame is off putting to me. I think they need to make some big changes now.

luluFemom said...

Lol LLA - the worst part about that comment is I feel like it's kinda true. Call me a lapsed Catholic, but I think I'm watching this one even more closely...

Anonymous said...

I think LLL's biggest problem is customer service. Mistakes happen but they need to own up to them and don't blame the customer. Their return period is terrible and I hope the new CEO will make some changes with respect to that.

Anonymous said...

LuluAddict is a yahoo celebrity once again:) Congrats on being featured so prominently in that front-page-yahoo article!!! i'm going take an extended work break, grab a can of kiwi-strawberry soda and read the comments:) i agree: condescending christine needs to go!!!

Anonymous said...

LOL on the white smoke LLHQ comment.

When Day leaves - let's hope so - she's still going to think she is a success in her own mind. She expanded the brand, increased profit, delivered to shareholders etc. etc. She met the goals. Inferior product and unhappy customers? Longevity of the company? She doesn't care and is certainly short sighted to not have placed value on the customer, quality and the longevity. Whether she goes on to work for another company is neither here nor there. She herself has a lot of money no doubt, to never have to work again.

I know women have it tough in business. Yet you would think that a brand that caters predominantly to women, with a woman at its helm, would get it right particularly with keeping the customer happy.

Anonymous said...

Wow I step away from my computer and all hell breaks loose. I have a feeling LLL will A get their act together or get bought out by some bigger company. LLA love your comment abou the white smoke. Yikes!
Just saw a lady pushing a stroller down 5th avenue wearing LULU black luon tights couldn't tell which ones, but they were as sheer as a pair of cheap nylons

M

Anonymous said...

please send the link for the yahoo article featuring lla - would love to read it! also lla thanks for doing such a great job posting comments and updating info on this whole lulu situation.

LuluAddict said...

If you go to the Yahoo main page there is a story about the recall and it mentions the blog by name lower down the article. I can't believe this story is so big.

Anonymous said...

I remember back when I first started working with textile clients they were working on some special fabrics for lululemon. Usually, sports and technical fabric companies (such as under armor and polartech) work on new fabrics each season, always updating, testing, working with the textile developers in vancouver to stay cutting edge.
However, lululemon had a few fabric developed.. and then nothing the next year or the next. We thought they had moved to a different textile development company. But now I think they just worked on making their existing technical fabrics cheaper to produce and just came up with technical-sounding names for the new, inferior fabrics.

Its ridiculous because I loved lululemon but why pay money to a company claiming to be technical and cutting edge when they don't even bother to up their game each year like other sports companies do?? Why do they deserve our money?

Anonymous said...

thanks so much! very nice quotes by you and wow! over 1,600 comments! this is incredible - the story is now national news? i think it just illustrates how frustrated core customers are with the quality issues as well as the backhanded/sneaky way lulu announced and is handling this latest issue. i mean to throw the manufacturing partner under the bus without even speaking to them - i wonder if anyone over at HQ is saying "hey guys, we need to stop this and start acting like human beings" the sad truth is i really believe if lulu came across as authentic and sincere the customer would be extremely forgiving. some people actually live the values that lulu prints to be trendy on their bags!

Anonymous said...

wow i've been saying its ms day from the get go- she is the CEO that means she's at the top of the proverbial food chain, every person own the line ultimately answeres to her, she is responsible for EVERYTHNING; that said, ya i'd say its time for her to go before the company goes the way of the GAP, big box store quality- a few coments hit the nail on the head in this regard- she isn't a style maven thats what lulu needs someone w/ the EYE for lululemoness, the shorter hemlines really chap my hide even more than the cheaper fabrics nothing uglier than long butt and too short of tops on tights- a bad bad bad bad look!!!! anyhow like the tame me tank upload- finally a nice top i'm considering buying again-

Anonymous said...

I just noticed on the the Turbo short is back on the US side of the website in black...

Anonymous said...

It is true, Christine Day sold $20 million of stock in 2012 including $5 million in December when the stock price was $73-75. Chip Wilson just sold $21 million worth in January.

Also, you won't believe this, but just today lulu management filed a document with the SEC stating lulu management is increasing their bonus pay! From the document: "The amendment increases the maximum performance level for each financial performance goal and for each individual performance goal under the Plan from 150% to 200%."

LuluAddict said...

@ anon 3:19 pm - Interesting comments. I think they have come up with some innovative fabrics since I've been following them:

silver luon - hasn't really caught on but some people,including me, really like it,

sheer luon and silverescent sheer luon - it's delicate but I love it for workouts on how days,

circle mesh - love it, very cool and soft,

silverescent knit - love it for running, though I wish they'd go back to their old Israeli manufacturers,

luxtreme - so breathable and great to run it, they need to be more consistent in the thickness in the manufacturing of it.

[My personal] Jury is still out on the seamless knit they use on the Ebb and Flows since I haven't found it to be super robust.

Anonymous said...

ITA with the sideswiping of the textile producer. The underhandedness is appalling. Anyone with even the most basic knowledge of textiles can see right through the excuses Lulu has come up with to explain issues.

Anonymous said...

the comments on the yahoo article are hilarious!! its filled with people who A) want to see pics of see through yoga pants or B) exclaim about the high prices.
The sheerness issue is only important to us :P

Anonymous said...

In regards to Christine Day dumping her stock...

No CEO dumps their stock and expects to still be employed afterwords.

She's done!

Anonymous said...

If anyone was in doubt as to exactly WHY we as women should NOT accept inferior quality products because they're just "a little sheer", I encourage you to read the comments on the yahoo article. It's all a buch I pervert men expressing their "gratitude" for women exposing their asses and camel toe in public and exercise class. It makes me sick. No matter how hot you are or think you are, I would like to think that all women have enough self respect to not desire such despicable attention. Moral of story: DO NOT ACCEPT SHEER BOTTOMS, WE DESERVE BETTER!!!

Anonymous said...

You know, I never like to see anyone crash and burn. I don't take any glee out of Day failing the company so miserably. However, I am a little relieved. OK, a lot relieved. I love this brand. I'm a little obsessed. I'm a serious athlete, and I've counted on LLL to make me feel great and look good while I'm competing or training, and I've been having a really hard time finding fitness apparel that is as good as LLL. I've completely moved away from the brand in the last 12 months or so, and I've missed it. I'd love to come back. Maybe Chip Wilson would come back as the CVO (Chief Visionary Officer...and yes, I made that up), and be the creative and design voice and right the ship. Someone else can run the business, but they have to follow Chip's lead on quality and design. Might be a nice compromise. Or maybe someone who understands the brand and is committed to restoring it to its glory days will be found. Who knows. I hope that the investors and board have learned a lesson with this debacle. Quality and style cannot be sacrificed for profit. Stay true to the brand and to your core customer, and the profits will come. Here's wishing Day out and a new day in. ;)

Anonymous said...

<3 you Anon @ 5:37 pm! Agree completely!!

Jen said...

Maybe I missed someone else making this observation ... not only did they issue the release in advance of the investor call, they issued the release just hours before an upload. Think of the web traffic they've received today! Got to admit, they do have a brilliant strategic PR team.

Anonymous said...

I think it's all a PR stunt. "Sheer yoga pants" -> fun news, lots of funny comments -> increase brand awareness, store/website traffic, etc.

Feeling really skeptical about the timing of this and why they chose the pants to be the hot issue. Bleeding hot pink colors, tanks 1" shorter, thinner fabric...these issues don't make sensationalist enough news. But "see-through yoga pants"? Now that's brilliant! That will really get the internet community going!

Totally a PR stunt, I say. Lulu is NOT "listening" to us hardcore fans as we wish Lulu would. We complain but we still buy and generate dialog about the brand, so as far as the company is concerned, the fans are still fans. I think Lulu thinks things are getting a little dull lately (stagnant sales? decreased store/website traffic?), and so they pulled this stunt to heat things up and get things more interesting. It worked!

LuluAddict said...

@ anon 7:57 pm - I kind of agree with you. Black luon pants aren't the worst offenders as far as sheerness goes. Luxtreme is much, much worse. Almost seems like a stunt.

Anonymous said...

How do you guys actually know what products/designs are more profitable than others?

Jenny said...

I have been a lululemon fan since the beginning. I see some issues with quality but my main concern is design! I think lululemon needs to go back to creating products that are all about function and stylish but not following current fashion trends. Do we really need to have dropped-crotch yoga pants?

If Christine Day really did sell off her shares I think she's in HUGE legal trouble. Aren't Q4 results going to be shared shortly?

Claire said...

I only know enough to be dangerous on this whole topic; however, from a loyal Lululemon Lover, I have to say I have noticed the decrease in quality fabrics. I wasn't sure if it was just me or not, but now I read that many have noticed scrimping on quality, lining and length. I don't love a lot of the new designs either. Super sad, as I could not wait to see (and buy) the latest and greatest in Lululemon!

Anonymous said...

People flocking to the website? Maybe to gawk but to buy a brand that's in the news for poor quality issues? Not likely! I doubt it's a stunt. I don't think the manufacturer would agree to or appreciate negative publicity.

I would disagree with you on luxtreme. LLL generally uses luxtreme in its running crops and some pants. It might be sheer if you bend but it's not see-through imo. I have no issues with luxtreme being too sheer. I totally appreciate luxtreme and the (generally) second skin feeling it will give and sometimes (depending on the style) great compression. As a hard core runner it's awesome. I have several luxtreme running crops (and a couple pants). When I have read that people wear luxtreme bottoms to yoga and then complain about sheerness: you may hate it, but when LLL states "designed for running" they really mean it. I personally appreciate the tech specs for running but acknowledge that it limits them in another way. Many women wear luxtreme crops to the gym, crossfit, bootcamp etc. (lots of bending) so of course you expect this athletic company's gear to function for you in any sport. It shouldn't have to be "capsule" specific when they design stuff for cross fit, i.e. "pump up the gym". If you're not a hardcore runner, you disregard "designed for running" and expect that if you're coining out this king of money, it had better work for whatever sport you are engaged in, running or no running. Peace.

Anonymous said...

http://www.lululemon.com/media/index.php?id=224

One of the last points on the media page/faq on this issue, for whoever mentioned the items are going to TJ Maxx or wherever.

"Will you be able to recycle the unusable pants or do you have to destroy them?
• We have a process to take care of product that doesn’t meet our quality standards and will be working to ensure that these products are recycled and managed accordingly as well. Once we have received all the affected luon, we will be able to make an informed decision on the best way to reduce the impact of this batch.
• For further information on our sustainability commitments visit http://www.lululemon.com/community/legacies/environment#waste"

Anonymous said...

Based on the SEC filings, it looks like Ms Day has been cashing out her stock options. She still has a significant stake (35,232 shares), unlike Chip (2,141) who sold a huge chunk early this year, and Sheree Waterson (Chief Product Officer) who sold her entire stake last Dec. Not defending anyone, just stating the facts based on the filings.

Eponymous Rox said...

Haha--I normally report on crime (GatherNews agency, Crime Mag, etc.) but two of my friends who are diehard Lululemon fans kept insisting this pants issue was "absolutely criminal"...so I covered it. (Don't know if I can make a live link to the article in this post, but you can click on my name in this comment as well: http://news.gather.com/viewArticle.action?articleId=281474981861269 )

Best of luck everybody; I'm back to chasing some hardened criminals now!

E.R.

Anonymous said...

I totally-definitely agree.

Anonymous said...

anona 5:37 your comment should be a manifesto.

M

Anonymous said...

Sounds exactly like what happened with Abercrombie. Anyone remember Abercrombie's excellent fabrics and quality 20 years ago??
I hope LuLu can come back, I love the older styles and girly/functional look!

Anonymous said...

If you quit and cash out your shares it is fine. If Day cashed out her shares right before lulu announced the recall, that would be insider trading.

Anonymous said...

I tried on the ivivva equivalent to wunder Unders and they did not have a gusset. Did not seem to be shear though and they were pink/coral.