A Requiem for Teen Dream Accessories Store Claire's
Pour one out for your middle school self.
In today's mall-pocalypse news (that's the mall apocalypse), Claire's has filed for bankruptcy.
The accessories hotspot for tweens that weren't edgy enough to set foot in Spencer's Gifts is handing off control from Apollo Global Management LLC, which bought the company from its founder in 2007 for $3.1 billion, to various lenders in an effort to ease its $2 billion debt, according CNN.
The company filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy on Monday, which will allow it to continue operating most of its approximately 3,000 stores while keeping creditors at bay until a turnaround plan can be implemented. However, according to Business Insider, Claire's will shutter 92 stores in March and April.
Early '00s preteens will fondly recall the closet-sized accessories store as the sparkly haven where they first got their ears pierced (Amazon can't do that for you — at least not yet) or as the space where they copped their Lizzie McGuire-inspired fuzzy hair clips and 50-pack of stud earrings — one for every shade of the rainbow!
Like many mall staples which once seemed invincible, the retailer has suffered thanks to decreased in-store foot traffic as well as online competition that offers the same trendy plastic sunglasses, tiny Santa hats and neon-hued eye shadow palettes. In recent years, the company has attempted to stay afloat by selling products in CVS Pharmacies as well as Giant Eagle markets, but it looks like its going to take more than that to keep up in the current retail landscape.
Should the chain make moves to shutter even more stores, it would be a sad day for fans of kitschy accessories, Beanie Babies (they still sell those!) and girly-girl must-haves (ie. tiaras). Sure, you can purchase a clip-on miniature sequined leprechaun top hat barrette on Amazon or Etsy, but were it not for the Claire's St. Patrick's Day window display, how would you know you even needed one?!
Mar. 20, 8:15 a.m. This story has been updated to reflect that Claire's filed for bankruptcy on Mar. 19.