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Lane Bryant, Fashion Bug to leave Valley Mall

Lane Bryant outlet at Hagerstown Premium Outlets will continue to operate

December 28, 2010|By KATE S. ALEXANDER | kate.alexander@herald-mail.com

HALFWAY — A major women's clothing retailer that specializes in fashion brands for plus-sized customers is closing two of its Hagerstown stores in 2011.

Lane Bryant and Fashion Bug, both owned by Charming Shoppes Inc. of Bensalem, Pa., will leave the Valley Mall in the first quarter of 2011, company spokeswoman Ilana Bagell said in a recent e-mail.

"The company's decision to close these locations is based on an ongoing process of analyzing the performance of the entire real-estate portfolio," she wrote.

Lane Bryant, one of the most recognized names in plus-size women's clothing, will close its Valley Mall store by the end of January, Bagell said.

According to a sales flier mailed to customers between Dec. 8 and 10, the store-closing promotion was for 40 percent or more off storewide merchandise at the Valley Mall location only.

Starting Jan. 5, Lane Bryant will offer 50 percent off everything in the store, Bagell wrote.

The promotion is only at the Hagerstown location.

Fashion Bug, a brand known for its affordability and size ranges in women's clothing, will close its Valley Mall location by the end of March, Bagell wrote.

"We have greatly enjoyed doing business in Hagerstown and would like to thank our customers for their loyalty over the years," she wrote.

Fashion Bug is running a store-closing sale at the Valley Mall location, Bagell said. A sign on the store's window indicates all merchandise there is 30 percent to 50 percent off.

Charming Shoppes has 19 Lane Bryant locations, including outlet stores in Maryland, Bagell wrote.

It also has 24 Fashion Bug stores in the state, she wrote.

Once the Valley Mall stores close, customers will not have to go far to shop for the brands.

Bagell wrote that Charming Shoppes will continue to operate its Lane Bryant outlet at Hagerstown Premium Outlets, just off exit 29 on Interstate 70.

Customers are invited to shop at the outlet, online or with Lane Bryant's sister brand, Catherines.

Catherines, which also owned by Charming Shoppes Inc. and offers career and casual clothing for plus-size women, has an outlet store at Hagerstown Premium Outlets, Bagell wrote.

After Fashion Bug closes, Bagell said customers can shop the brand online or at one of the nearest stores.

According to its website, Fashion Bug currently has stores within 50 miles of Hagerstown in Frederick, Md., Charles Town, W.Va., and Winchester, Va.

Charming Shoppes Inc. is the parent company of three distinctive brands: Lane Bryant, Fashion Bug and Catherines, according to its website.

Valley Mall Marketing Director Michele Wills did not respond to a request for a comment on the store closings.

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