Long Tall Sally

Long Tall Sally has fallen short amid uncertain times. 

The women’s specialty apparel retailer, which sells clothing and footwear for women 5 feet 8 inches or taller, said Tuesday it will soon close permanently, another casualty of the coronavirus.

“The changing economics of retail, along with fierce competition, have hit us hard,” Alison Doherty, chief operating officer of Long Tall Sally, wrote in a note on the brand’s web site. “Trading has been incredibly challenging and we’ve relied heavily on shareholder support to bolster LTS. The sudden and profound impact of COVID-19 has further weakened our position. The economic outlook is now too uncertain for our shareholders to continue to support the business, so it’s with a very heavy heart that I must tell you we will be winding down Long Tall Sally.”

The exact date for when the e-tailer will close its online shop has not been set, but Doherty estimated it will be toward the end of August, at which time the web site will be shut off. 

Long Tall Sally was founded in 1976. The brand caters to tall women by offering clothing options that came with longer torso sizes, shoulder and hip proportions and addressed issues such as varying front and back rises on pants and darts on blouses. 

Since its beginnings, the need for tall sizes was evident and the company grew quickly. Today Long Tall Sally has 104 employees and sells brands such as Karl Lagerfeld Paris, Chillax, Point Zero, Y.A.S., Mavi Jeans and Dolce Vita, in addition to the LTS label.

But other brands, including The Sixes, Amalli Talli and model Karlie Kloss’ jeans line, along with retailers like Old Navy, J. Crew, Asos and Topshop, have popped up in recent years, offering tall sizes and causing added competition. 

In 2016, Long Tall Sally was sold to German-based holding company Tristyle Mode GmbH, backed by private equity firm Equistone Partners Europe, for 30 million pounds. In 2018, Long Tall Sally closed all of its brick-and-mortar stores to further cut costs. 

The London-based brand said it is not currently in administration — a restructuring procedure similar to a Chapter 11 bankruptcy in the U.S. — but the firm is open to finding a new buyer, or to selling off its assets.