Inside Stitch The official Vera Bradley blog

The lifespan of a color

Today, we officially welcome Purple Punch, Sittin’ in a Tree and Poppy Fields to our list of colors that are featured in the Sale section. (As well as the styles Lisa B, Morgan, Reversible Tote and Maggie.)

Purple PunchSittin' in a TreePoppy Fields 

Which begs the question: How do we decide which and when colors will move from the regular lineup to the Sale section? We asked Monica Edwards, Senior Director of Marketing and Communications, and Chris Jones, Senior Director of Merchandise Management for the scoop.

Q: How do you determine when it’s time to move a color to “Sale” or remove a color from the product line?
A: We listen to consumers in order to determine which patterns are still their favorites and when they decide to move on to something new. Our forecasting team looks closely at styles, colors and the buying habits of Vera Bradley fans across the country to determine if and when a color moves into the Sale section.

Q: How do you predict what is or will be popular?
A: Trend research helps our Product Development team determine which colors and styles might be most popular in an upcoming season. These trends then help our Merchandise Management team forecast when a color or style will be most popular, or when we think Vera Bradley fans will be ready for something new.

Q: What’s the approval process for a change in a color’s status?
A: Our Merchandise Management team will make a recommendation to various departments of the company, such as Direct and Indirect Sales. We then work collaboratively to determine the best time to put styles and colors on sale.

Q: What role do fans of Vera Bradley play in the process?
A: We look closely at what fans are buying across the country to help us determine what will be most popular in a season.

Q: Will you ever bring back a retired color?
A: At this time, we do not have plans to bring back any old patterns. Our design team has so many great ideas for the future, that they can’t envision going back into the archives … But we never say, never!

Q. Does this mean these colors (Purple Punch, Sittin’ in a Tree and Poppy Fields) are now retired?
A: A color or style is only officially “retired” when we completely remove it from production, which we have not done with these.

Q: Just out of curiosity, how has Java Blue remained available for so long?
A: Java Blue was one of our fans’ all-time favorites. For years, they loved it. We saw it being worn year round, and we heard from fans that it was the combination of cool turquoise and warm, deep earth tones that made it so appealing.  It will go down in history as one of the most popular patterns of all time!

8 Comments

  • Maria says:

    Great insight into the process! Sittin’ in a Tree is one of my very favorites, though, and I will be super sad if it is retired.

  • MellieNg says:

    It makes me pretty depressed when a pattern goes into the sale section (that sounded weird XD), because it has a possibility to become unavailable. Purple Punch was one of the first patterns I fell in love (along with Puccini) with <3 and I still haven't bought anything in that print… :( Really hoping it'll still be in the local retailer by my homee :|

  • Elizabeth C. says:

    This was very interesting! I do wish some of the retired colors could be brought back though, I miss them!

  • Gwenith Smith says:

    SIAT was what caught my eye in January 2010. I had been to this particular retailer for the last 12 years summer and winter in Door County, WI on vacation. I had never looked at the VB items nor did they ever catch my eye. I saw SIAT and was instantly sucked in and fell head over heels for the pattern, color and styling of the bags. I spent over an hour deciding between a hipster or mailbag. Finally the hipster won, but once I got my bag and turn lock wallet I walked out and saw a Saddle up on the display and went back in to get the saddleup instead of the hipster.

    Saddleup has taken over the color theme in my home and I am very sad to see it go. It was my first, and I own the most of it with some pissing elements. If it wasn’t for SIAT I probably wouldn’t have even discovered Vera Bradley.

    This January I was back at my favorite retailer for my vacation and picked up some more VB to continue the tradition of where I bought my first piece.

    SIAT is the theme for a wedding I’m planning. My mom loves the idea!

  • Gwenith Smith says:

    SIAT was what caught my eye in January 2010. I had been to this particular retailer for the last 12 years summer and winter in Door County, WI on vacation. I had never looked at the VB items nor did they ever catch my eye. I saw SIAT and was instantly sucked in and fell head over heels for the pattern, color and styling of the bags. I spent over an hour deciding between a hipster or mailbag. Finally the hipster won, but once I got my bag and turn lock wallet I walked out and saw a Saddle up on the display and went back in to get the saddleup instead of the hipster.

    SIAT has taken over the color theme in my home and I am very sad to see it go. It was my first, and I own the most of it with some missing elements. If it wasn’t for SIAT I probably wouldn’t have even discovered Vera Bradley.

    This January I was back at my favorite retailer for my vacation and picked up some more VB to continue the tradition of where I bought my first piece.

    SIAT is the theme for a wedding I’m planning. My mom loves the idea!

    Sadly I cannot type and noticed some typos. Bad typos!

  • Rocky says:

    I love Paisley Meets Plaid. I will be sooooo sad when it is officially retired. :( Please bring it back.

  • lucy says:

    hi, i am doing this project for school so can you tell me the top 5 most popular patters of all time from vera bradley and what they sell most of. thanks

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