Posts Tagged ‘Bobbi Brown’

Duh, New York Times: Did Apple Ruin Its Image By Going On HSN?

September 27, 2012

The knuckleheads in the U.S. press just can’t seem to get it through their thick noggins that home shopping networks are not longer just cubic zirconia emporiums. The latest example is the venerable, but totally out of touch, New York Times.

The broadsheet posted a blog Wednesday with the headline “Would a Home-Shopping TV Appearance Damage a High-End Brand?” It raises the question of whether Emmy-winning makeup artist Eve Pearl should appear on ShopNBC with her cosmetics line.

http://boss.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/09/26/would-a-home-shopping-appearance-damage-a-high-end-brand/

Eve Pearl

The blog says that Pearl worried “whether the mass sales platform offered a good fit for her high-end cosmetics.” We think that the very topic is more reflective of The Times’ attitude, and looking down its nose, at home shopping.

The blog then quotes three experts about whether they would advise Pearl to go on ShopNBC.

One of them, Bethany Karlyn, actually knew the score.

“Maintaining a high-end brand image in a home-shopping venue is not the challenge it once was,” she told The Times. “In fact, she’ll find herself in good company. The schlock impression has changed with high-end brands such as Elizabeth Arden, Benefit, Lancôme, Vincent Longo, Lorac and Shiseido, on HSN. On QVC, Perricone has a two-ounce product selling for $495.”

Not for nothing, but stellar brands such as Apple, Sony, Bobbi Brown, Dennis Basso, Robert Lee Morris, Judith Ripka — to name just a tiny few — don’t seem to be any worse for the wear by appearing on HSN and QVC.

Duh.

Advertisements

Kate Middleton Wore Montclair-QVC Girl Bobbi Brown’s Makeup For The Royal Wedding

June 3, 2011

Famed makeup artist Bobbi Brown — our famous fellow Montclair, N.J., resident — is in West Chester, Pa., right now.

She had QVC’s Today’s Special Value for Friday, an “On The Go” makeup kit for $90 that’s a great deal. It includes two blushes, four eyeshadows, gel eyeliner, brushes and a wristlet. Add that up all individually, and it comes to about $190.

Kate MIddleton was wearing Bobbi Brown makeup at her wedding

We already ordered our kit. We use Brown’s blush and eyeshadows and love them.

BTW, for our new gig at The Montclair Times we recently spoke to Brown’s husband, who is a hotshot developer in town. He was very funny and cracked us up, sounded like a nice guy.

QVC host Jill Bauer gave everyone a some juicy dish about Brown: Kate Middleton and her hot sister Pippa used wore Brown’s makeup for THE wedding April 29!

QVC Revs Up ‘Makeover Day’ To Support Dress For Success, With A $250,000 Donation As Well

May 18, 2010

We’ll be busy at a conference in Chicago Thursday, so we’re going to miss QVC’s National Makeover Day.

QVC’s 24-hour event is “geared toward helping its customers make over their homes, looks and lives,” according to the home shopping channel’s press release.

But we can’t make too much fun of it, since it’s all for a good cause. QVC is working with its vendors to raise awareness for Dress for Success Worldwide, an international non-profit dedicated to helping disadvantaged women achieve economic independence. All will be making a collective contribution of $250,000 to the organization.

As part of “National Makeover Day,” QVC is giving six women from Dress for Success personal life makeovers – including a beauty makeover from Bobbi Brown (our fellow Montclair, N.J., resident), a financial makeover from Suze Orman (who lives in Chester, N.J.) a hair makeover from Chaz Dean (we’re not impressed with his Wen product so far) and a fashion makeover from Bradley Bayou and Gretta Monahan.

“Dress for Success helps disadvantaged women create their own life makeovers,” Joi Gordon, CEO of Dress for Success Worldwid, said in a canned statement. “Thanks to QVC, on May 20 people across the country will meet six of our most incredible success stories – women who have changed their lives and now are poised to achieve their dreams.”

The transformations will be revealed live on QVC, with the experts sharing how QVC’s customers can achieve similar results from the comfort of their homes.

“We wanted to create a day devoted to helping women create positive change in their lives,” Claire Watts, QVC’s president of U.S. Commerce, said in a statement. “It’s not just about changing your look – it’s about changing your outlook. We are thrilled to join forces with our vendor community to raise awareness for Dress for Success. Over the years, the organization has impacted the lives of so many women. We’re honored we can play a part in helping them to continue these important transformations.”

We Hate To Break It To You, Fellow Jewelry Lovers, But It Looks Like Another Year Of Boring Laptops, B. Makowksy Bags and Wii On QVC

February 25, 2010

Mike, enough with the Clarisonic, cause we don't care if it's one of Lisa's favorite things

QVC had a great fourth quarter, which is good for the home shopping network but bad for jewelry geeks like us.

The U.S. channel, a unit of John Malone’s Liberty Media, Thursday reported a 13 percent jump in revenue to $1.7 billion in the fourth quarter.

“We posted our strongest quarterly results in over 10 years, and moved our full-year results into positive territory,” QVC CEO and president Mike George told analysts during a conference call Thursday.

And George got a pat on the back from his boss, Liberty CEO Greg Maffei.

“At Liberty Interactive, QVC had a very impressive fourth quarter, which capped a greatly improved 2009 overall,” Maffei said.

Why is all this bad news for bling lovers? George said that QVC saw the revenue gains because it posted strong sales on consumer electronics, kitchen and floor care, beauty, accessories and fashion jewelry. Apparel, while soft, improved significantly over the trend for prior quarters, according to George.

“Jewelry, especially gold, did remain difficult, however,” he said, at one point noting, “We continue to pull back our time on jewelry.”

That means more Wii and Clarisonic shows, not sterling and gold (fashion jewelry doesn’t count). Break out the No-Doz.

George spent quite a bit of time crowing about Isaac Mizrahi joining the QVC family, but offered no numbers on how well the designer’s extensive line of products have sold.

“Compelling exclusive content is powering our business,” he said, calling the debut of the Mizrahi line as “one of the biggest brand launches in our history.”

QVC also premiered Godiva chocolate, NARS cosmetics, Stephen Dweck diamonds and fashions by celebrity styliest Rachel Zoe in the fourth quarter, said George, who boasted that the channel in its history had never had the level of publicity and buzz it got in the final quarter.

Veteran brands on QVC — B. Makowsky, Rachael Ray, Philosophy, Bobbi Brown and Dennis Basso in fashion — performed well in the quarter, according to George.

Some 720,000 new customers joined QVC in the fourth quarter (which we presume means they made purchases), a 22 percent increase in the number of new customers a year ago. Revenue from new customers was up 53 percent from last year.

“At any given point in time we have 10 non-customers watching QVC for every customer watching QVC,” George said. “So when we get it just right, and get the right kind of products that have high appeal to new names, as we did in Q4, you can really get explosive growth without any additional advertising or other support, just by people coming by the channel.”

He also attributed some of QVC’s fourth-quarter success to the more favorable channel position it now has on DirecTV and Dish Network, and the fact that the network’s HDTV channel is now in more than 25 million homes.

In December QVC launched an iPhone application that’s been downloaded by 115,000 customers in a little over two months, George said.

For The Record, QVC, HSN And ShopNBC Aren’t Funding Us: We’re Proud To Say We’re Not Getting A Dime To Write This (Mmmm, Time For A Business Manager)

February 22, 2010

We've commented on HSN CEO Mindy Grossman's cleavage, and you think she's paying us?

We’ve had a number of people, those who’ve had the integrity to ask us right to our face, if we are getting paid to write this blog. We guess the assumption on the part of some, obviously those that don’t know us very well, is that one of the home shopping networks is paying us to write this blog.

Let’s clear the air. Remember that old chestnut to the effect of when you make an assumption you make an ass of yourself. That applies here, folks. Anyone who thinks we’re getting a single dime from QVC, HSN or ShopNBC esta loco, and estupido.

We guess we shouldn’t be bragging about this — since it’s not helping our bank account — but we are not selling ads, offering product placement or in any way, shape or form or getting compensation from anyone to write this blog.

Then why do it, some people ask us, in disbelief. Well, we are looking for a full-time job, and we consider this our living resume and writing sample. It you’re an employer and you don’t like our style, or think the billion-dollar home shopping industry is frivolous, or don’t like snarky commentary, we guess that we are not the right fit for you.

But if you are looking for a reporter/writer who can cover a beat (home shopping); come up with stories and post items on a daily basis; and uniquely combine writing about pop culture, celebrities, news, finance and the inside-gossip of QVC and HSN, then we’re on.

But home shopping, people ask? We’ve said this several times, but we’ll repeat it for newbies to this blog: We love jewelry and gemology, have since we were a kid, and QVC and HSN are the biggest jewelry retailers in the country. We don’t give a crap if Gawker or The Wall Street Journal make fun of the networks.

Yes, we own lucious jewelry from luxury brands such as Tiffany & Co. and Roberto Coin, but we’ve gotten gorgeous things at the three electronic retailers, as well.

The fact that high-end names like Robert Lee Morris, Bobbi Brown, Judith Ripka, Gucci, Godiva, Tag Heuer, Ann King, Barbara Bixby, Stephen Dweck, Badgley Mischka, Dennis Basso and Naeem Khan are selling on QVC, HSN and ShopNBC now makes the case for the networks far more eloquently than we can.

We’ve dinged all three home shopping channels, as well, numerous times. We’ve written about HSN CEO Mindy Grossman’s cleavage, how QVC hired an alleged embezzler who now stands charged with robbing it, and taken ShopNBC to task letting veteran host Charla Rines go. We’ve made fun of QVC and HSN’s PR departments.

Immature? Perhaps. Have some our blogs been silly? Yes. Are we having fun writing them? You betcha.

We like to think we’re doing for home shopping what Joe Flint at the LA Times does for media in “Company Town.”

And so these home shopping channels that we’ve poked fun at — while also covering them as a business reporter would follow any beat — are the same guys you suspect are paying us to write Homeshoppingista? Wrong.

Makeup Queen Bobbi Brown Tells New York Times How She Hires Staff

January 25, 2010

Bobbi Brown — the makeup diva, QVC vendor and fellow Montclair, N.J., resident — did a Q&A with The New York Times Sunday.

The interview, headlined “High Heels? They Just Don’t Fit,” is in part about how Brown hires employees. It was run as a “Corner Office” column.

After going through outplacement — and getting schooled on resumes, interviewing and “PARS” and “CARS” — it’s a little shocking to see Brown say that that she knows within the first two minutes of an interview if she likes the person or not. And if she likes them, they’re in.

Brown also says that she never looks at a person’s resume until she sits down with them for the interview. Then she has them take her through their resume.

We like that approach. No trick questions. No “what’s your biggest weakness” or “where do you want to be in five years” crap.

Brown, whose Montclair studio is within walking distance of our condo, has several shows on QVC today.

She has several cosmetic items that are only available on QVC.

In her interview, Brown also says that she is not a corporate type, that she prefers the comfort of sneakers over high heels.

QVC, HSN and ShopNBC Should Give Thanks For Home Shopping’s Sea Change: They’ve Attracted Luxury Brands Like Gucci, Badgley Mischka And Stephen Dweck

November 26, 2009

QVC CEO Mike George

We thought we were seeing things a few days ago when we checked ShopNBC’s Web site and saw that it was selling dozens of Gucci watches. What happened, did they fall off a truck? Why was Gucci, a premier luxury brand, being sold on a home shopping network?

Then back in October, we couldn’t believe it when a sharp-eyed poster on QVC’s jewelry forum said that upscale jewelry designer Stephen Dweck, whose chunky gemstone masterpieces are featured in Neiman Marcus, was on the No. 1 home shopping network’s schedule. THE Stephen Dweck?

We checked QVC’s program guide ourselves, and there it was: Dweck was doing a lower-priced jewelry line for QVC called Dweck’s Diamonds. His Neiman Marcus pieces didn’t even have diamonds. The high-end stuff is made with semi-precious stones.

Also in October, we were checking the press releases on HSN’s Web site when we saw the network had struck a deal with one of the most famous and elite fashion houses: Badgley Mischka, designers of bejeweled gowns for the red carpet and celebrities.

We’ve written bits and pieces of this during the past two months, but we thought we’d tie it all up in a tidy package for Thanksgiving: There has been a sea change in the home shopping world, prompted by the disastrous economy and the crash of the luxury market.

Yes, home shopping networks have seen their sales hurt by the economy, like everyone else. But they claim they are still managing to steal market share from brick-and-mortar retailers. In fact, QVC is making a full-frontal assault on them this Black Friday, with 28 hours of special products and programming stunts starting Thanksgiving night.

The consumer press will continue to mention “cubic zirconia” in every story it writes about QVC or HSN, oblivious to the fact that some of the most esteemed names in fashion, jewelry and cosmetics — brands you find in Saks, Bloomingdale’s and Neiman Marcus — are plying their wares on the aforementioned home shopping channels.

ShopNBC CEO Keith Stewart

Male journalists are blind to this. You still have the nerds at Gawker, a snide Web Site for the navel-gazing media, chiding HSN for selling “useless crap.”

If you have ever seen how male journalists dress or their fashion and style sensibilities, you will realize that you can’t expect them to know names like Badgley Mischka, Judith Ripka, Robert Lee Morris, our fellow Montclair, N.J., resident Bobbi Brown, Yves Saint Laurent, Smashbox, Lancome and Dweck. And these brands and artists don’t represent “useless crap.”

Luxury-good makers are hurting, and they need to make up their loss in sales. So they are turning to outlets like QVC, as CEO Mike George explained at a recent Liberty Media conference, as outlets to distribute new lower-priced lines to the masses. George cited fashion designer Vivienne Tam’s QVC alliance at the meeting held in Manhattan by his parent company, Liberty.

“This complete implosion of luxury retailing in America has caused all these folks to rethink their business model,” George said.

And that means partnering with QVC, HSN or ShopNBC.

As we said, it will take the consumer press years to figure out that home shopping channels are distribution powerhouses that have undergone a transformation, in part because of the infllux of talent like a Morris, who does couture jewelry for designers like Donna Karan and RLM Studio sterling silver jewelry for QVC.

The Big Three — QVC, HSN and ShopNBC — are aggressively trying to broaden their audience and potential customer base, those who don’t normally watch any of these three networks. That means the three are actually “programming” the channels, doing “shows” that have entertainment value, not just product shilling, so they will attract non-QVC or non-HSN watchers.

We remember once interviewing a QVC exec years ago and asking what the network’s ratings were. He said ratings were irrelevant: QVC was only concerned about how many products were sold in an hour.

HSN CEO Mindy Grossman

That’s a totally different tune from what we heard recently from QVC’s George, and from the strategies that HSN CEO Mindy Grossman and ShopNBC CEO Keith Stewart have initiated.

Like traditional TV networks, the home shopping players want viewers to “sample” a QVC or an HSN. These new audience members, hopefully, will then see products that they want to buy.

For example, singer Natalie Cole recently did a live concert on HSN to promote a new Holiday CD set she is selling on the channel. If you’re a fan, you might tune in to HSN to see her, and then actually decide to purchase her CD. Artists such
as Jose Feliciano have also performed live on QVC.

QVC alum Stewart on a recent third-quarter conference call pointed out that actress-entrepreneur Suzanne Somers, who came to ShopNBC from HSN, had succeeded in attracting new viewers to Minneapolis-based ShopNBC because she was “entertaining.” And these networks want new eyeballs.

And home shopping networks’ capacity to reach millions of consumers and do fulfillment of orders has not been lost on magazine publishers, celebrities or cable’s reality TV stars. With circulation falling, women’s magazines such as Lucky, Allure, Glamour and Self are partnering with HSN to sell subscriptions.

And stars have seen the light. In a recent interview in Oprah Winfey’s O magazine, Joan Rivers, who’s had a jewelry line on QVC for almost 20 years, told O she was on home shopping when “nobody except dead celebrities was doing merchandise on TV.”

Nowadays, it’s hard to find a celebrity or TV star who doesn’t have a home shopping line. Even Madonna was interviewed on HSN when she was selling her children’s book.

Here’s a partial list:

Paula Abdul, HSN, formerly “American Idol,” Fox

Rachel Zoe, QVC, “The Rachel Zoe Project,” Bravo

Isaac Mizrahi, QVC, “The Fashion Show,” Bravo

Padma Lakshmi, HSN, “Top Chef,” Bravo

Ramona Singer, HSN, “The Real Housewives of New York City,” Bravo

Susan Lucci, HSN, “All My Children,” ABC

Carson Kressley, QVC, “How to Look Good Naked,” Lifetime Television

Dr. Robert Rey, ShopNBC, “Dr. 90210,” E! Entertainment Television

Tori Spelling, HSN, “Tori & Dean: Home Sweet Hollywood,” Oxygen

Paula Deen, QVC, Food Network

Rachael Ray, QVC, “The Rachael Ray Show,” syndication

Ingrid Hoffmann, HSN, Food Network and Univision

Home shopping is a big business. ShopNBC is the also-ran in the group, but in the third quarter Stewart made some nice progress cutting its losses. Sales for the Big Three were all down, but down less than previous quarters.

And we are not talking chump change for these networks. The three home shopping channels generated $8.3 billion in net revenue in 2008. QVC domestic posted $4.9 billion, HSN netted $2.8 billion and ShopNBC had $568 million.

Even with revenue still slipping this year, for the first nine months QVC had revenue of $3.308 billion; HSN had net sales of $1.4 billion; and ShopNBC had $372.6 million in net sales.

Happy Thanksgiving!

We Hope Francois Doesn’t Disappoint With Nars Cosmetics Debut On QVC

November 10, 2009

QVC has landed another high-end makeup vendor to its lineup, Nars.

The cosmetics line will debut on QVC Wednesday at 8 p.m. It is one of many high-profile makeup brands that QVC has brought on board to broaden its product mix, names like Bobbi Brown, Laura Geller, Smashbox and the popular Bare Escentuals.

On Monday, QVC CEO Mike George attribituted the network’s solid third quarter in part to strong makeup sales, saying the channel has “built a prestige beauty business.”

Here is the network’s spin on Nars.

“Chic, sophisticated and timeless with a twist, Nars is the beauty brand for the modern, independent woman. At the heart of this iconic brand is creator François Nars’ philosophy: there are no rules when it comes to beauty; whatever makes you look and feel good is right,” says QVC’s web site.

“From his early days as a student at the Carita Makeup School in Paris to his work in New York with fashion’s top publications, François Nars has helped to transform the face of beauty. His distinct aesthetic is evident throughout the entire Nars collection and in all of Nars’ advertising campaigns, which François photographs himself,” so we are told.

“Nars embraces a woman’s individuality, providing her with a bold, rich color palette, a range of luxurious textures and the confidence to express herself. A favorite of beauty insiders and magazine editors, Nars is also the choice of celebrities, makeup artists and fashionistas.”

Let’s see if it becomes the choice of Homeshoppingistas.

No-Names Rachael Ray, ‘The View’ Host Elisabeth Hasselbeck Do Their Thing On QVC Friday

October 23, 2009

When we tell friends we’re doing a blog on home shopping, some stick up their noses and say they wouldn’t be interested, they don’t know anyone on QVC or HSN. Ignorance is bliss.

So they have never heard of Madonna, who has appeared on HSN to promote her children’s book, or Paula Abdul, Ellen DeGeneres, Susan Lucci, Bobbi Brown, Natalie Cole…We don’t have time to go on and list all the celebrities and big names that have home shopping lines.

Today a couple of fan favorites are being featured on QVC. TV food star Rachael Ray, who has been on QVC for a year with a cookware line, has Today’s Special Value, a stoneware set for $47 and change.

And Elisabeth Hasselbeck of “The View” will be on Friday with her apparel for QVC’s Dialogue line.

Ray was just on, and her hair is long. Does she have extensions, or have we not just seen her in awhile? Last time we looked, she had short hair.