UPDATE: Racked LA Is No More. Really. And We’ll Tell You Why…

Racked LA, Racked LA Closing,


Fashion Trends Daily, Who What Wear, and The Zoe Report are among the last few homegrown, L.A.-based fashion news sites standing.

On Friday, we received the sad news from Racked L.A. Senior Editor, Natalie Alcala, that the L.A.-focused site of the popular fashion and retail blog would be closing down later today. Racked also closed operations on its Racked NY web property, as well.

The tectonic plates of the L.A. fashion editorial and retail landscape have been shifting wildly under us recently. Legendary retailer Fred Segal closed down its iconic Santa Monica location in March and last week, longtime Los Angeles boutique Satine shuttered its flagship West Third Street location. And Friday, there was disappointing news for the L.A. fashion editorial scene: last year also saw the departure of longtime L.A. Times fashion critic Booth Moore.

Racked LA is the L.A.-centric edition of Racked, the popular fashion web site owned by Vox Media. It Racked in 2013 and has been restructuring its editorial content this year in an effort to boost the site’s editorial profile. Vox Media also owns a host of other popular Web properties, including The Verge, vox.com, Eater, SB Nation and more.

Earlier this year, Racked expanded its team and brought in Britt Aboutaleb from Yahoo, as well as a cadre of other high-profile names from People Style Watch, Vocativ, Fashionista, and more.

In a call with editor-in-chief Britt Aboutaleb, she said that the move was in keeping with Racked’s updated strategy to provide more globally focused content and that regionally focused sites simply weren’t pulling in enough traffic.

“Instead of taking away New York and L.A., we like to think that we’re adding Nashville and other great cities, as well,” said Aboutaleb. “The readership [for L.A.], to be honest, was quite small.”

Aboutaleb said that the existing content will remain up on both the Racked LA and Racked NY sites.

There’s a legitimate fashion presence now. It’s a good time to be in L.A. covering fashion.”— Danielle Directo-Meston, Racked LA associate editor

The L.A. outpost of Racked counted four editors among its team: Senior Editor Natalie Alcala, Associate Editor Danielle Directo-Meston, and contributing editors Jennifer Astin and Ashley Tibbits.

When I reached Racked LA Associate Editor Danielle Directo-Meston on Friday, she and members of the team were at Soho House L.A. diligently working to complete Racked LA’s final stories.

“It really does leave a massive hole in the market in terms of L.A. retail and news coverage, and the opportunity to support local labels and businesses,” said Directo-Meston.

Having served as a West Coast retail editor for Women’s Wear Daily, I have always appreciated Racked L.A.’s coverage of this city’s important and ever-changing retail landscape. And I know firsthand that its size and fluidity make it more than any one single site can cover, which is why losing this voice is especially disappointing.

Racked LA was known for covering a wide swath of store openings in Southern California — from Gwyneth Paltrow’s Goop pop-up shop at Brentwood Country Mart to the opening of Uniqlo and other boutiques at luxury shopping center South Coast Plaza as well new retail concepts such as L.A.’s Platform.

Racked LA closes, Racked LA shuts down

“I feel like there’s so much happening in L.A.,” said Directo-Meston. “There’s a legitimate fashion presence now. It’s a good time to be in L.A. covering fashion. Especially with social media, there are so many new ways to cover it.”

Aboutaleb agreed that L.A. is an important market and said they would continue serving it on the more global Racked site.

“We have an extensive roster of freelancers,” said Aboutaleb. “But now, we are definitely highlighting the best of the best and less of the minutiae of store openings and real estate [news].”

Racked has also been exploring publishing more on social mediums such as Facebook Live, Snapchat, Tumblr and more.

Senior Editor Alcala said in her farewell email that she was “offered a position at the new, more globally focused Racked” but that she would instead be focusing on building her year-old business, Fashion Mamas, a members-only network for mothers who work in fashion and creative industries. The group currently has over 140 members in L.A., more than 50 members in NY, and will be launching in San Francisco next month.

For her next move, Directo-Meston said that she’s looking to support a platform of her own to continue to support L.A. labels and businesses. Said Directo-Meston, “I definitely want to keep supporting our locals.”

This story was originally published on July 29, 2016 and was updated on August 1, 2016 to reflect  statements from Britt Aboutaleb.

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Author:Michelle Dalton Tyree

Fashion Trends Daily is the brainchild of Michelle Dalton Tyree. She is the former West Coast Retail Editor for Women’s Wear Daily, Fashion Editor for The Japan Times, and founder of former L.A. luxury boutique Iconology. Michelle is frequently quoted about fashion retail trends in major media outlets such as NPR, KPCC, The Inside Source and the New York Times. She has developed content for many luxury brands and retailers and has written for Allure, Worth Global Style Network, Footwear News and other media outlets.