Former J Crew creative director Jenna Lyons has a new gig, spreading her retail design wings in a deal with Turner for a TV series and lifestyle platform. “I want to find a language and voice that feels honest, approachable and human to share things that I love,” Lyons told THR.
Lyons has signed a deal with the Turner entertainment company for an unscripted TV series that will also anchor a new lifestyle platform with e-commerce and major social media.
Working with Millard Drexler at J Crew, Lyons was a key player in building the $2 billion brand before leaving in April 2017, under the weight of sluggish sales.
“I’m excited to be doing something totally different,” Lyons said Tuesday. “I couldn’t think of a better partner for this next-generation fusion of media, lifestyle, and commerce,” added Kevin Reilly, president of TBS and TNT and chief creative officer, Turner Entertainment, in a statement.
Lyons is reluctant to compare her new platform to either HSN or Goop, saying that her will have a curatorial eye “with practical advice on how to solve aesthetic challenges (and indulge aesthetic whims) in an inclusive way,” Whew!
“What I’m hoping to create is a world that is currently not available. If you think about Consumer Reports, which is not a sexy thing, the guy tells you all the reasons why something is good, but there is not a lot of curation involved. At the same time, in the world of editorializing things, I want to do it in a broader way, in a way that you don’t need to have a home that looks like Martha Stewart’s or Gwyneth Paltrow’s or mine.”
The weekly television series will produced by Our House Media with Matt Hanna, Simon Lloyd and Hillary Olsen executive producing. "Our House Media is super excited about working with Jenna and Turner to create something that’s never been done,” said Matt Hanna, President, Our House Media USA. “The timing seems just right to finally crack the content-commerce puzzle. And connecting a personality like Jenna with the vision of Turner presents us with an incredible creative opportunity.”
Lyons joked about appearing weekly on a TV series, “I’m breeding clones as we speak,” before reflecting on the greater cultural moment of reinvention, particularly in the fashion industry. “I’ve realized it’s ok to be a little scared to pivot,” she said. “Particularly in this day and age where everyone is trying to picture everything so perfect, I have found a great level of comfort in being honest with the fear.”