luella_spring2010_jourdandunn.jpgJust two days ago I was telling you about Luella Bartley's collaboration with Liberty of London, and today I have some very sad news to report - Luella has ceased trading. *Gasp*

Club 21, the brand's global licensee, has reportedly backed out of its long-term investment by announcing it had reluctantly "taken the decision not to invest further in its relationship with Luella Bartley Limited."

The news has sent shock waves around the fashion community, with Bartley expressing her disappointment at the decision.

"I very much appreciate the support that [Club 21 subsidiary] VSQ has given me, but it is upsetting not to be able to protect jobs in this difficult economic climate," she said in a statement.

"I love the Luella character and hope that after we have survived this challenging time the Luella girl can have an exciting future ahead of her, whichever incarnation she takes on next. We have a number of options open to us, and are considering these over the coming months," she added.

Last year, Bartley was named British Designer of the Year. Her label's estimated turnover is around 9 million pounds and she is the current creative consultant at Liberty. Surely this can't be the end for one of our favourite labels?

Already a "Save Luella" campaign has popped up on Twitter - show your support now.

[Image: Style.com]