Brock Collection, the Los Angeles-based line known for its romantic Baroque-inspired designs favored by stars like Meghan Markle and Margot Robbie, is the latest American brand in limbo.
The label hasn’t released a ready-to-wear collection in a year, no longer works with several of its wholesale partners, including Moda Operandi, Net-a-Porter and Forty Five Ten, and hasn’t posted on its Instagram account since October. 2021. Its relationship with licensing partner HIM Co. also ended last year.
“I have confirmed with our buying team that unfortunately we are not offering Brock Collection for the upcoming season or for the foreseeable future,” a Moda Operandi representative said. “Our understanding is that the brand is not currently producing collections and/or is on hiatus.”
The break comes just months after Brock Collection created two capsule collections. He launched a collaboration with Swedish retailer H&M in June and wedding platform Over the Moon in October. H&M declined to comment. Over the Moon founder Alexandra Macon said in an email that the collaboration “resulted in a strong sale that exceeded our lofty expectations.”
Questions around the brand’s operating status have been swirling for months, especially since 2016 CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund award winner and New York Fashion Week staple Brock Collection took part in the weeks of the in-person and virtual mode in 2021 (his last track outing was in February 2020).
Kristopher Brock and then husband and wife Laura Vassar founded Brock Collection in 2014. Wholesale relationships with retailers such as Neiman Marcus, Saks Fifth Avenue, MatchesFashion and Ssense soon followed. For retailers like niche fashion curator Forty Five Ten, Brock Collection was a top supplier, a store representative said, catering to customers across the United States and particularly in Texas, where the store is based and where shoppers gravitated toward plush, soft clothing tinged with Victorian and Western cues.
In 2018, Brock Collection signed an exclusive licensing agreement with Onward Luxury Group, now High Italian Manufacturing or HIM Co., which once owned the rights to Jil Sander and had in the past manufactured products for Mulberry, Proenza Schouler and Nina Ricci . The agreement was reached with the aim of expanding Brock Collection’s presence in Europe, Russia and the Middle East. But one of the company’s US officials confirmed to BoF that Brock Collection’s partnership with HIM Co. ended in 2021.
Brock and Vassar filed for divorce in 2019. Brock declined interview requests.
It’s hard enough for independent brands to survive. Adding a pandemic to the mix means that every business decision – like how and when to rotate categories – has an outsized impact. Take Christopher Kane: the British label is expanding its offer by creating the lifestyle brand subsidiary “More Joy”. More Joy slogan T-shirts and other products retail for $500 or less, a much more accessible entry point for shoppers compared to the brand’s $1,700 pleated dresses.
Brock Collection’s latest ready-to-wear collection, released in March 2021, focused on looser silhouettes and fabrics that emphasized comfort, but at high prices, such as $1,340 for a dress wool-blend midis or $940 for a pair of printed denim jeans.
During the pandemic, shoppers reconsidered where they were spending their money, “resulting in a humiliating reset of who that customer is and how many brands can realistically exist in that space profitably,” said Elise Saetta, director Stern Fellow of New York University. Fashion and Luxury MBA Program from the School of Business.