St. John Knit’s Caviar IS the New Black

St. John Knit’s Caviar IS the New Black

I received a letter from Marie Gray, CEO of St. John Knit at home this week.

I assumed it would be about the economy.  That’s why we hear from CEO’s these days, right?

It wasn’t.  It was a 5 paragraph letter about a major change in the staple color of the staple fabric of the classic clothing line: the black Santana knit.  For various reasons including the environmental impact of dyes, the fabric color dying process has changed over the years.   Marie Gray writes that she had noticed that recent “black” collections had a bluish cast and had migrated far too close to their navy blue color.  So, they innovated.  They created a new process that would use less water and energy and produce a truer black that will be called “Caviar”.

Why does this matter to loyal customers like me?  In short, your old stuff won’t match the new stuff.  Part of the beauty of the items is that they last forever and you can mix and match items from lines and years.  It is garanimals for grownups.  The letter mentions that all stores and consultants have been armed with swatches of old black, navy, and new caviar for people to compare for themselves and prepare for the changes.  It also reinforces St. John’s commitment to craftsmanship at a time when other brands are focused on discounting which re-reinforces why this is a brand worthy of of a weekend – as well as my loyalty and respect.  While I wont be making any big purchases any time soon, the swatch compare will drive me into the store on my next NYC trip and who knows, maybe caviar will be hard to resist.

7 Replies to “St. John Knit’s Caviar IS the New Black”

  1. St. John Knits…wow!! Very glamorous, very dignified, very classy. I have been to the store many times, salivating, hoping, wishing that I would have even just one outfit. But I know I don’t have the extra money to be able to buy one. I enjoy the browsing though. My girlfriend has one or maybe a couple. Understand she has a more glamourous job than mine. Is it true that the company guarantees their clothing from damage caused by drycleaning. I know the pailettes are kind of permanent but what kind of guarantee does the company have if for some reason some pailettes pop out from being dry cleaned. Can she take it back to the store? She will have to find her receipt…good luck! She bought it in 2007. Can you please educate us on this matter? Thanks for your time.

  2. I would definitely give it a shot. I’ve had 2 “issues” with SJK items since I started getting interested in the clothing and both were quickly corrected by the company. I had a pair of pants start unraveling around the waistband (I called the store, mailed the pants back, they had the fabric rewoven and returned them to me). The other is the circumstance that made me such a fan in the first place – my wedding dress. You can read about that here:

    In short, as a brand, they stand by their products so I would suggest your friend call the place where she purchased the item and ask them for guidance!

  3. I too received the letter from Marie Gray – and am incensed. The selling point of St. John is investment dressing. One purchases a jacket today that interchanges with pieces purchased seasons ago. All dye lots and fabrics match. Shoppers, more than ever, are looking for value and creative ways in which to update one’s look without replacing working wardrobe staples. The idea of introducing “Caviar” and no longer offering basic black Santana means every St. John client is “starting over.” This one (former) client will NOT! St. John can keep its “new and improved” black! Had St. John run parallel blacks for several years, they might have inspired confidence that St. John truly cares about its long standing customers. My take is this is a marketing ploy to get customers to update and spend new dollars for “Caviar” wardrobe basics.

  4. I am a long-time fan of St. John. I recently purchased a sheath dress in a melange knit that was called “black” on the tag. When I went to wear it with one of my classic Santana black jackets, it looked navy blue. Now I know why. I am pleased St. John is environmentally responsible and look forward to purchasing items from the Caviar Collection. From what I’ve seen so far, the designs are better than ever.

  5. We are the largest resellers of St John Knits on eBay and we have many colors and styles to choose from including the Black knits that we all want to keep. We also have a large consignment business reselling all top designers including St John Knits. Please check our website for more information by clicking the eBay link.

  6. Will she please start making longer clothes for the ladies who do not care for the short ones

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