Struggling up-market Australian accessories label Oroton has gone into voluntary administration. The news comes after Lover announced on Monday it too had gone under.

The 79-year-old handbag retailer has seen a few years of slumping sales resulting in a $14.2 million loss last year. The company announced this morning that after an eight-month review it couldn’t make a comeback. With 59 stores around Australia, it’s a big blow to bags.

Interim chief executive Ross Lane said there was no other outcome other than voluntary administration. “The board is disappointed that it has had to take this step after running such a comprehensive process,” he said in an official statement to the ASX.

It’s business as usual while administrators Deloitte Restructuring Services pursue a sale or recapitalisation, the company said.

While this news paints a bleak outlook for Australian retail, recent store openings imply that, yes, while some labels are floundering, others are optimistic. But designers need to readjust in the age of fast fashion and create deeper connections with customers. We’ve seen Kym Ellery open a boutique art gallery above her flagship and Sydney’s Sarah and Sebastian open a store that retains an element of the workshop, challenging the retail model.

Perhaps these formats will find traction in the market.

oroton.com.au