Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Cool Racerback Being Discontinued? - Update


I know it's less than twelve hours after a Hey Lululemon topic was made on the rumors that the Refresher Racer was replacing the Cool Racerback (if you haven't already, please add your feedback to that thread) but the thread is up to 95 votes and 82 comments and there is still no reply from lululemon. Furthermore, no anonymous insiders have chipped in here on the blog about whether the rumor is true or not. That makes me think the rumors are true. Damn it. I thought this comment on Hey Lululemon perfectly summed up my feelings about the direction the company seems to be heading in:

velevele Aug 19, 2014 4:10 AM

Seriously, who is in charge over there?  Is it that hard to keep some core pieces and do the experimenting around the edges, rather than replacing the core pieces entirely?  Every time there's a "replacement", it's something worse (Scubas, Run Times shorts for Groovy Runs, etc., I could go on and on). And I'd like to see the experimenting in workout/casual gear, not in that weird stuff that's been coming out lately. Count me in as one who thinks the whole "meesh" (what a stupid name) line and much of the Lab line are ridiculous.  If I want clothes like that, I'll buy them from companies who specialize in that (and are good at it).  You're already losing a lot of your athletic market to other brands (I have a lot of Athleta pieces now, and I just bought my first Beyond Yoga tank, and I LOVE it).  If you want to be some edgy urban-clothes company, then just admit it and stop with all the workout wear already. Companies often get into trouble when they branch out into areas they're no good at.  You're heading down that road fast.

Update:

A reader has some great comments:

Anonymous said...


Their silence is maddening. Here you have a site that they created urging "guest" feedback in an effort to show they're listening, and during one of the biggest uproars amongst their loyal customers, the crickets are chirping. Surely there has to be some kind of response they can come up with to at least give the appearance they care.

Sometimes I just think that the loyal customers that have been with them since they were a small Canadian company (not me - I only date back to 2012) are a nuisance to them and whatever newfangled vision it is they have for the company. It's like they're trying to shake that group off their ankles so they can move on to bigger and some odd interpretation of "better."

I couldn't agree more and definitely think there is a new direction the company is taking in terms of design and tone. Is it winning them new customers? Based on the chatter on the boards I'm a member of I doubt it but, then again, we are the customers they are trying to shake off. 


29 comments:

Amanda said...

Ummm that's like my favourite thing from there. Here's an idea, re-release crbs in jacquard lace and unicorn tears and a few other old favourites, and then tell me its not worth keeping.

Crbs don't even fit me properly, the straps are too long in the 6's and if I size down to a 4 they are sometimes sheer, but they are still my favourite.

Anonymous said...

Such a stupid decision. But not totally surprising. Groove pants - the good ones from way back. Gone. Defines. gone. Scubas - again the good old style. This company is tanking fast. Dump your stock now peeps!

Anonymous said...

Saw this response to a review on their website:
Response from lululemon:
By Katelin, Digital Engagement, August 19, 2014
Hey DanceLemon,
Don't fret - the Cool Rcaerback is here to stay! While we are offering new options in different silhouettes, we'll still be carrying the Cool Racerback.

Anonymous said...

Their silence is maddening. Here you have a site that they created urging "guest" feedback in an effort to show they're listening, and during one of the biggest uproars amongst their loyal customers, the crickets are chirping. Surely there has to be some kind of response they can come up with to at least give the appearance they care.

Sometimes I just think that the loyal customers that have been with them since they were a small Canadian company (not me - I only date back to 2012) are a nuisance to them and whatever newfangled vision it is they have for the company. It's like they're trying to shake that group off their ankles so they can move on to bigger and some odd interpretation of "better."

Anonymous said...

Que the jacked up prices on ebay in 5,4,3,2,1....

Anonymous said...

Whilst I actually like both the CRB and the refresher, I do think the CRB suits a much larger base (well, duh). I did notice on the lulu website under one of the reviews of the CRB a GEC comment not to worry, the CRB is 'here to stay', they are just releasing colours in other styles - which I can understand. Time will tell. And if they are discontinued, those of you with 50+ CRBs can make a killing on ebay :P

MB. said...

To add to this: theyre discontinuing one of the most popular mens items, the Game On Boxer, only to release a scratchier, cheaper material version (no cool max) to replace it. Same price point of course. How convenient...

Melissa said...

I got a similar response from the GEC. So all this hullabaloo is for nothing.

LuluAddict said...

"Sometimes I just think that the loyal customers that have been with them since they were a small Canadian company (not me - I only date back to 2012) are a nuisance to them and whatever newfangled vision it is they have for the company. It's like they're trying to shake that group off their ankles so they can move on to bigger and some odd interpretation of "better.""

^^^^THIS^^^ One thousand times THIS!!! ^^^^

You are so right, anon 11:05 am!!!! I think there is a new "vision" for the company. I'm not sure what it is - edgy urban, hipster 'chic', god only knows, but I really think it's this. I doubt this market is as large as their current one but I'm sure I could be wrong. I think a lot of the items that fall into this category is ugly, cheap looking, and just not well done in terms of good proportion, lines, and just having a good 'eye' for design.

LuluAddict said...

@ Melissa - they wrote to you that it is NOT being discontinued?

LuluAddict said...

However, GEC is not known for being accurate. I'd prefer to see a definitive statement made on Hey Lululemon. That is their design feedback site.

Anonymous said...

i think lll loves to create controversy and have people in a frenzy (over yoga/work out clothes) which they have done time and time again.... i think it's just about as likely to discontinue the CRB as it is that they would discontinue the wunder under.... i've never been on the hey lulu forum - i wonder if there is a way to attach pics.... people should send pics of their crb collections. i thinned mine down to 16 (from a much higher number), i just felt kinda crazy having so many and really only wearing the ones that i actually kept, although i do also have another 16 swiftly CRBs (for running), the regular ones for me are for yoga. i'll bet some on here have a complete rainbow in their closet/drawers, maybe lulu needs to be reminded. in any event, thanks so so much lla, your blog is AMAZING and all the hard work you put into it is so appreciated!

Melissa said...

They wrote something similar to anonymous @11:04. Not being discontinued, just offering different tank styles. As they usually do. And while it might be true that they are sometimes inaccurate I think until we have a definite confirmation it's a little soon to be rounding the troops.

Anonymous said...

For what it's worth, someone mentioned the NLT being discontinued on heylululemon, right after the rumor was posted here and on lulumum, and the GEC denied it.

Anonymous said...

That was the first thing I thought of this morning when I read about this "rumor". The first place I headed was to Hey Lululemon to vote! And as I read all of the comments, I was looking for someone, anyone from Lululemon to have posted at least a "we'll check into this and get back to you"!

NOTHING! Silence...

As others posted... head hanging low...............

LuluAddict said...

@ anon 11:32am - that is another theory going around. Float the rumor to boost CRB sales, lol.

Anonymous said...

If the CRB leaves the line, then I will leave lululemon, its just that simple.

Anonymous said...

They're probably getting a kick out of all this. I always envision them laughing together when they read comments like these...everyone in a tizzy here.
I don't want to see an end to crbs but what worries me is that clothing companies are months ahead of us and if they are phasing out the crb they would've gone through with it months ago when they started production of fall lineup. (If that makes sense)
It's not like they're just "pressing the button" to create this months supply now...
If they really decided to get rid of this staple there's probably no going back by the time we hear about it. Just like lengthening the WUC. We didn't get wind of it till it was a done deal.

Anonymous said...

THIS JUST IN...
From HeyLululemon

katelin Aug 19, 2014 2:33 PM

Hey crbandwus and everyone else sharing their passion with this!

Don't panic! The Cool Racerback (a personal favourite of mine), isn't going anywhere. We are offering some new silhouettes, such as the Refresher Racer, however, the Cool Racerback will still be here to stay.

cc: britt

Anonymous said...

Sorry, this is unrelated- does anyone know what time new items are uploaded? I lost out last week! (And yes- that blazer is absolutely 100% ugly! Wtf?!)

Deezee007 said...

Do you think that Lulu will come out with a CRB that says "Save The CRB" in the next upload? LOL! Brilliant marketing concept, just say'n.

I've left my comment on Hey Lulu and someone had better listen to what we are saying.
Damn the man, save the CRB!!

Anonymous said...

I'm velevele (thanks for the nice words about my post!), and I wrote what I did not so much because of the CRB issue (I only have 3, and while I like them, I'm not a fanatic about them), but because I'm so annoyed about how every time there's a change in a core item, it's for the worse. For example, a few days ago I wrote a detailed comparison of the Run Times vs. the Groovy Run shorts (it's under the Run Times review section) showing how the RTs are smaller in every way (yet cost the same, even though they're now made of less fabric, = more profits for LLL). If you look at reviews, people who never knew about the GRs love the RTs, but most people who had the GRs don't like the RTs as much. It's like y'all have said. The newcomers don't know better. The old-timers, who do know better and keep saying so, are an annoyance. (And I'm not even a old-timer! The GRs are pretty recent!)

I have to admit that I almost went to the website and started snapping up CRBs once this rumor got started. Managed to refrain. :-)

Anonymous said...

11:05 here...thanks for the shout out! Glad I'm not the only one who feels that way! Sometimes the things that they do just absolutely baffle me.

I see that they have since posted a response confirming that the CRB is not going anywhere. I am certain that the delay is telling. If it was an unfounded rumor, it would have been nipped in the bud. I think they saw the firestorm that erupted, realized the move would alienate more customers than intended, called an emergency "oh crap!" meeting, and decided to reverse course. I cannot think of any other plausible explanation for not waking up to a post saying "oh dear! It seems some misinformation is circulating!"

I'm annoyed with heylululemon in general. I post here and there, and my posts and others' are met with silence. It's not like a day's worth of posts to the board is so overwhelming that they couldn't post some kind of acknowledgement that the post was read and taken under advisement, even if the idea will never have a chance of taking flight. It just seems like PR 101 to me. And for the love, delete the spam!

Anonymous said...

Similar to what happened to Studio Crops also. Digital Engagement reps repeatedly wrote that they would not be discontinued in the product review section. However, just days later, Brit announced that they would not make any more Studio Crops on Hey Lululemon website. Moral of this story is that we shouldn't believe what GEC says because they don't know either.

LuluAddict said...

@ anon 1:30 pm - Totally agree. They seemed to take a while to nip the rumor in the bud.

I usually don't post random rumors but a few people had recently posted stories that eds had told them about a month or so ago, when the Refresher Racer first came out, it was being tested as a possible CRB replacement. That was one reason I posted this, hoping to show lululemon the love that exists for the CRB and how many, many people own a great number of them. I don't get the sense there is anyone at the company, at least in a high up position, who really sees the products from the loyal fan's point of view.

Anonymous said...

I think that's exactly what happened. I think it was either a trial balloon, or close to a done deal. If it had been a random rumor, I suspect it would have been quashed a lot quicker.

I kind of like the trial balloon idea. I can just see the conversation. It’s the Monday executive meeting at Lulu. Exec 1: "Hey, I know, let's discontinue the CRB! We can make a smaller shorter cheaper version to replace it, and charge the same, and advertise it as an improved version! Just like we did with Scubas, Run Times, etc." Exec 2: "Hmm, but ya know, I think the CRB is pretty popular. [Not that we keep data on what’s popular or anything, because that would, like, you know, make sense.] Maybe we should hire a consultant to study this.” Exec 1: “Nah, I know! Let’s just float the rumor and see if anyone reacts! Much cheaper than a marketing study! Why should we hire a consultant when our customers will provide input for free?”

LuluAddict said...

@ anon 3:15 pm - I think so. Usually employees will post a comment anonymously to correct me but it was crickets for until the official word came down.

Anonymous said...

I like the refresher tank. I think it suits petite women, so I hope they keep both.


M

Anonymous said...

the tactic of saying that the CRB may be discontinued, works.
It's like the going out of business or final sale technique. It works, it creates a frenzy.

M