Tag Archives: MarthaHome

JC Penney Begins Selling Disputed Goods Designed by Martha

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The new house line of home goods at JC Penney, “JCP Everyday”, is now on sale in stores and online! It is well-known that these products were designed by MSLO employees, although they are not allowed to carry the “Martha Stewart” name, pending resolution of the current court case. Some things I noticed as I viewed the items online:

1. They products definitely bear some of Martha’s signature design elements, the hen-egg blue, the faux bois pattern (one of Martha’s favorites), and the overall elevate taste level are definitely Martha-inspired.

2. Most of the products look nothing like similar items for sale at Macy’s as part of the Martha Stewart Collection. True, the pasty bags at one retailer look like the pasty bags at the other–but that’s because of the design requirements inherent in those particular items. 

3. I’m intrigued by the “JCP Everyday” logo (see cookie cutters image above, bottom row at right). The two overlapping houses do, in fact, make an “M”, don’t they? Macy’s brought this up in the court case, as they sought an injunction to halt the sale of these items, even though they do not carry the “Martha Stewart” name on them. The judge denied Macy’s request, and they have appealed. Further, these items are not allowed to be sold in the Martha Stewart stores-within-stores at JC Penney, nor be placed anywhere nearby, pending the outcome of the current court case–a step taken to minimize harm to Macy’s, should they ultimately prevail in court.

FOMs: What do you think? My own message to Macy’s is this: Calm the heck down, would you? It’s clear Martha and her team have no intention of cannibalizing their own profits generated by sales at Macy’s. That wouldn’t be very smart, would it?

From the Reuters article:

“As of today, those products are on the floor and online,” Paul Rutenis, general merchandise manager of J.C. Penney’s home department, said on Monday in testimony in New York State Supreme Court.

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Details on Martha Stewart Products Offered in MarthaHome at JC Penney!

marthahome_130211Thanks again to FOM Alan for this tip!

Sounds like MarthaHome will launch with offerings carefully selected to comply with those categories Macy’s feels they have the “exclusive” right to sell: specifically, cookware, kitchen  utensils, bedding, and bath. Instead MarthaHome will offer Martha Stewart Pantry (pantry and food items) and Martha Stewart Celebrations (paper party items).

Interestingly, the article in Dallas Morning News mentions a new private label called “Everyday” to be offered at JC Penney stores. (The retailer’s brand tagline is “Every Day Matters.”) This new private label is interesting because, of course, “Martha Stewart Everyday” was the name of Martha’s line at Kmart–a line which featured products in those very categories that Martha is now forbidden to sell at other retailers, according to Macy’s interpretation of the contract. It is unclear if MSLO has been involved in the development of the new “Everyday” line at JC Penney–but as long as it’s not sold with Martha’s name on it, it would be considered legal per the Macy’s agreement. It is also unclear if Martha’s contract with Macy’s has language in it to protect any intellectual property that she already owned before entering into her contract with Macy’s, which would leave open the possibility of selling products under the “Martha Stewart Everyday” brand online or through the mail–although not at another retailer.

It is worth nothing that when the Martha Stewart Collection launched at Macy’s in 2007, Martha Stewart Everyday products were still being being sold at Kmart. It wasn’t until the end of 2009 that Martha Stewart Everyday ended its run at Kmart. So, Macy’s didn’t originally have a problem with the duplicate categories being sold at another retailer.

From the Dallas Morning News website:

The other legal challenge is a lawsuit Macy’s brought against Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia over its celebrity founder’s participation in the Penney transformation. Lawsuits between Macy’s, Martha Stewart Living and Penney were consolidated last year, and the case goes to trial Feb. 20.

For now, Martha Stewart’s name is on rugs, window coverings and two new lines, Martha Stewart Pantry, a collection of food mixes, and Martha Stewart Celebration, a large selection of paper party products.

The 1,100-store chain also has a new private label called Everyday that includes bed, bath, tabletop, cookware and furniture, categories that Stewart must avoid due to a court order.

Penney plans to open its Martha Stewart shops by Mother’s Day in 536 stores.

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Get Ready for MarthaHome!

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Special thanks to FOM Alan for sending this in!

The MarthaHome pre-launch page is live on the JC Penney website! No browsable content yet, but you can sign-up to receive updates by text message or by email. Be among the first in your area to know about special events related to the MarthaHome launch! Looks like MSLO is fairly confident of reaching agreement with Macy’s over that retailer’s lawsuit. MSLO and JC Penney could use some good news–and the launch of this new collection may be it. Can’t wait to explore MarthaHome in a JC Penney’s store!

You can click on “Find a Store” located at the top of the page, next to the search box on the JC Penney homepage, to find the store closest to you.

From the MarthaHome page:

Welcome home…to MarthaHome. A new collection of items designed to simplify your life, while adding color and individuality to the way you live. If you can imagine it, we can help make it a reality.

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