Expensive fashion brands Abercrombie & Fitch and Hollister dumped by teens in favour of H&M and Zara


Parents can breathe a sigh of relief. The pricey casual fashion brand Abercrombie & Fitch, and its stablemate Hollister, have been dumped from the teen wishlist.

Sales have collapsed for the preppy American style once so beloved of youngsters, particularly in private schools, in the face of cheaper, “fast fashion” retailers such as H&M and Zara.

Figures for the second quarter showed overall sales down by 7 per cent, with the revenues for the California-flavoured Hollister brand crashing by 10 per cent. The core Abercrombie & Fitch label was down 1 per cent.

Famed for its nightclub-dark stores and, in London, for having a stripped-to-the-waist male model greeting shoppers on the door, Abercrombie & Fitch’s sweatshirts and T-shirts, sporting big logos and a scruffy sportsfield  feel, became an overnight hit in the Noughties. And that despite the eye-watering prices of £80 and more for a hoodie.

But as teens have found better things to spend their money on – mobile phone apps and games – so they’ve moved on to cheaper, smarter- looking clobber copied from the catwalks by the cheaper, faster-moving chains.

Yesterday’s figures were accompanied by a 10 per cent slide in the share price and speculation the brand was going the same way as so many other casual fashion labels on the turn, from Juicy Couture to American Apparel.

Perhaps taking a line from the playbook of Superdry and French Connection, the British labels that found themselves falling out of favour a few years ago, Abercrombie & Fitch told Wall Street investors yesterday that it would scale back on the heavy use of logos on its clothes to “practically nothing” by next spring in the US and go for more fashionable looks.

“In a continued challenging environment, our sales for the second quarter were somewhat below plan,” said the chief executive Mike Jeffries, who is set to close 60 stores this financial year.

Last year, he was accused of promoting an unhealthy body image when defended the company’s sizing policy in a controversial interview in which he argued that its clothes were designed for “cool” and “attractive kids”.

He  had to backtrack on the “no plus size” policy, offering larger sizes and more colours, in an effort to win  back shoppers considered too “big” for Abercrombie & Fitch.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Money & Business

Recruitment Genius: Payments Operations Assistant

£23000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: They win lots of awards for the...

Recruitment Genius: Telephone Debt Negotiator

£13500 - £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This nationwide enforcement com...

Guru Careers: Communications Exec / PR Exec

£25 - £30K: Guru Careers: We are seeking a highly-motivated and ambitious Comm...

Guru Careers: Pricing Analyst

£30 - 35k: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Pricing Analyst to join a leading e-...

Day In a Page

On your feet! Spending at least two hours a day standing reduces the risk of heart attacks, cancer and diabetes, according to new research

On your feet!

Spending half the day standing 'reduces risk of heart attacks and cancer'
Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Reds baulk at Christian Benteke £32.5m release clause
With scores of surgeries closing, what hope is there for the David Cameron's promise of 5,000 more GPs and a 24/7 NHS?

The big NHS question

Why are there so few new GPs when so many want to study medicine?
Big knickers are back: Thongs ain't what they used to be

Thongs ain't what they used to be

Big knickers are back
Thurston Moore interview

Thurston Moore interview

On living in London, Sonic Youth and musical memoirs
In full bloom

In full bloom

Floral print womenswear
From leading man to Elephant Man, Bradley Cooper is terrific

From leading man to Elephant Man

Bradley Cooper is terrific
In this the person to restore our trust in the banks?

In this the person to restore our trust in the banks?

Dame Colette Bowe - interview
When do the creative juices dry up?

When do the creative juices dry up?

David Lodge thinks he knows
The 'Cher moment' happening across fashion just now

Fashion's Cher moment

Ageing beauty will always be more classy than all that booty
Thousands of teenage girls enduring debilitating illnesses after routine school cancer vaccination

Health fears over school cancer jab

Shock new Freedom of Information figures show how thousands of girls have suffered serious symptoms after routine HPV injection
Fifa President Sepp Blatter warns his opponents: 'I forgive everyone, but I don't forget'

'I forgive everyone, but I don't forget'

Fifa president Sepp Blatter issues defiant warning to opponents
Extreme summer temperatures will soon cause deaths of up to 1,700 more Britons a year, says government report

Weather warning

Extreme summer temperatures will soon cause deaths of up to 1,700 more Britons a year, says government report
LSD: Speaking to volunteer users of the drug as trials get underway to see if it cures depression and addiction

High hopes for LSD

Meet the volunteer users helping to see if it cures depression and addiction
German soldier who died fighting for UK in Battle of Waterloo should be removed from museum display and given dignified funeral, say historians

Saving Private Brandt

A Belgian museum's display of the skeleton of a soldier killed at Waterloo prompts calls for him to be given a dignified funeral