An expensive line selling clothes for cheap? Who wouldn’t love that? A lot of people, apparently. When Lilly Pulitzer announced last week that it would be producing a line for Target, many Lilly fans were not pleased. Twitter exploded with angry messages, claiming that this would cheapen the brand, as they worried about its new, increasingly accessible status.
#LillyforTarget ?? Oh, no! From luxury to mass-market and soon to be bargain bin, there goes of my favorite brands
— Jenna (@JJCaroccia) January 7, 2015
Lilly and Jackie are crying tonight in heaven at the thought of #LillyForTarget. It was never suppose to be this way
— Marie Goldstein (@ThePreppyMAG) January 7, 2015
There are a number of problems with the Lilly for Target critics. Firstly, commenters who are worried that it will make the brand “cheap” or less respectable in some way need to consider the sheer number of leading brands and designers that have collaborated with Target in the past. Few would argue that Jason Wu, Zac Posen or Phillip Lim lost credibility after their highly successful Target partnerships. If anything, it increased the public’s awareness of the brands and influenced potential future consumers.
If you really like Lilly, it seems that you’d be happy to see the brand succeed and become more accessible. Reactions like these beg the question: do these people like Lilly for aesthetic reasons, or because owning something expensive makes them feel that they are somehow better than others? Class and style shouldn’t come at a price.
Perhaps we all need to take a moment to remember the brand’s namesake in her own words: “Style isn’t about what you wear, it’s about how you live.” —Lilly Pulitzer