Kira Plastinina, the Russian teenybopper chain that suddenly shuttered US stores after only seven months in 2008, will be replaced by the Lublu label. The company, which consists of the now 18-year-old designer and a bankrolling mogul father at its helm, seemed to have jumped in too fast, too soon back in 2007, facing obstacles from branding issues (apparently, there's another American label with Kira in its name?) to total economic meltdown and, it seemed, way too many stores.
Now, Plastinina is returning stateside with the grown-up, pared-down Lublu (the website is taupe, instead of pink) on a wholesale basis, instead of opening stores as she had with Kira Plastinina. Lublu means "I love" in Russian, and represents an aesthetic take-two by the designer, aimed at older women, rather than tweens. Plastinina also told WWD Lublu would enjoy a greater degree of exclusivity than its Kira Plastinina counterpart, which operates 130 stores in Europe, as opposed to Lublu's presence at only about 40 doors across the continent.
Plastinina is quoted in the WWD article, saying "I'm a little more involved in the business side than when I was 14." It's a statement that really puts the company's struggle into perspective--the problems seemed stemmed from rushing into things too enthusiastically, prematurely. She was, after all, only 14 years old--so, although she's not yet out of her teens, let's hope this time around some thought and maturity will help get better results.