Slane Shuts Down Wholesale Division

Effective Jan. 30, Slane will no longer accept wholesale orders.

The New York City–based design house founded by sisters Landon and Heath Slane in 1997 announced plans yesterday to halt its wholesale business. Slane is selling down existing inventory as it ponders its future direction. Its e-commerce-enabled site will remain live, and it will continue to seek out collaborations with partners like Forevermark, with which it teamed to create a pair of 22.04 cts. t.w. diamond earrings worn by Kate Hudson to the 72nd Annual Golden Globe Awards on Sunday night.

Landon Slane revealed in a phone interview yesterday that discontinuing wholesale operations has been a consideration for the past two years and was made in part because of industry’s frenetic pace. Demands placed on designers include constant requests for newness, extended terms, memo, and trade-outs in an increasingly competitive marketplace.

“The pace is not sustainable,” observes Slane. “It’s not positive for anyone, and it feels disposable and not special or precious—when every indication we’re getting in the marketplace is that the more special and precious pieces are doing so well.”

Not ready to sell the business, but also not ready to let go of all the independent retailer relationships—Slane has upwards of 40 wholesale accounts—the company has established over the course of 18 years in business, the siblings decided to “hit the pause button and see what makes sense for us,” explains Landon.

“We introduce 15–20 new collections a year, it’s quite a pace,” she adds. “Slane sits in some of the biggest independent jewelers in industry, some of which are offering discounts and incentives and want to see us participate in national ad campaigns. We are sharing this same tough retail environment with them, and we’re expected to keep up. We just had to ask ourselves, ‘Does this still make sense for us?’ We appreciate the ride and journey, but now we have to step back to determine the future of Slane.”

Slane designs are known for their modern classic appeal—think columns and bee motifs—in sterling silver and 18k gold. At press time, Slane had 14 employees and did not plan to exhibit in any 2015 trade shows.

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