Update: One day after Blake Lively announced she was ending Preserve, she continued her beautifully-executed failure with this Instagram, thanking everyone for their support:
So sweet. That Blake humour is great in the best of the times, great in the worst.
One year ago, Blake Lively joined the celebrity lifestyle brand club—and became the butt of many jokes—when she launched Preserve. She later told Time she wasn't satisfied with the site, and that dissatisfaction is what led her to announce she's shutting it down completely on October 9.
Blake explains in a new interview today that the site 'never caught up to its original mission: It's not making a difference in people's lives, whether superficially or in a meaningful way. And that's the whole reason I started this company, not just to fluff myself, like, 'I'm a celebrity! People will care what I have to say!'
Blake announced her pregnancy on the site, offered lifestyle advice, and sold collections she helped design, among other clothing and goods. Ending it is 'very exciting and it's also incredibly scary. I never thought I would have the bravery to actually do that, to take the site dark and to say, 'You know what? I haven't created something that is as true and impactful as I know it can and will be.' And I'm not going to continue to chase my tail and continue to put a product out there that we, as a team, are not proud of.'
And though she anticipates some backlash, she isn't shelving this project completely: 'I'm going to take this hit, and the only way I can prove all the negative reactions wrong is to come back with a plan that will rock people. And I have that plan. And I'm so excited about it, and that's what gave me the courage to do this, to say, 'You know what, I'm going to give myself one more shot at this, and I really have to do it as well as I can do it this time.' And that is the only thing that will impact people. And that's what I'm doing. And I'm totally terrified out of my mind! I've asked my assistant to just play 'Shake It Off' on a loop—it feels really good to listen to it on a loop!'
The new brand has the same goal as the original: 'to touch millennials through storytelling, and the idea is to create a shoppable lifestyle,' Blake explains. 'And that's not to say to turn everything into commerce, but to make things easier: This is a thing that I created with my own two hands and this is how you can do it, or this is something that I found on my adventures and travels and this is how you can have it. It's about creating a level of ease for the people who identify with us. We've focused in so much that it's actually very simple, it's very clean, it's very direct.'
But she knows this too shall pass: '[The news will] blow up and I'll look like a jerk and everyone will be really horrible. And then the new news will come out and I'll look like a hero and everyone will be really nice, and then the new site will come out and half will be nice and half will be mean again. I mean, champagne problems—thank God these are the things I get to complain about.'
#ChampagneProblems, genius. Well, keep your chin up, Blake, and let's pour one out for Preserve.
Words: ALYSSA BAILEY