Pam + Viv 4-Eva; Fashion Week To Leave Bryant Park?

  • The first season of Erin Wasson's much-anticipated line for RVCA is late. [Racked]
  • Fresh from accusing Dolce & Gabbana from copying a menswear design he hadn't even then shown, Giorgio Armani has snide words for Rome's fashion week. (The Italian capital has a small couture week, which is separate from the bigger ready-to-wear week in Milan.) Rome fashion week responds, basically, that Armani should eat it. [Reuters]
  • Meanwhile, Italian designers didn't necessarily enhance their fashion-forward quotient by showing an inordinate amount of Obamawear. Did nobody think giant screenprints of the man's face on caftans might be slightly too literal an interpretation of "hope"? [Reuters]
  • The industry, like the country, continues to feel the effects of this recession. Macy's is laying off 4% of its workforce, or some 7,000 people, in company restructuring. [WWD]
  • Liz Claiborne, which owns the brands Mexx, Lucky Brand, Juicy Couture, and Kate Spade, announced plans to cut 725 jobs across the company this morning. That's 8% of its workforce. [Reuters]
  • Avon is struggling against poor sales, and the high US dollar. Restructuring made net income jump 80% last quarter, but the company expects 2009 to be tough. [WSJ]
  • Meanwhile, retailers whose margins are hit hard by discounting this season are trying to find ways to manufacture and distribute clothing ever more cheaply. Think less embroidery and time-consuming embellishment, less air-freighting, and switching from Chinese factories to ones in countries like India. [WSJ]
  • Update in the ongoing search for the "recession-proof" inessential of myth. It's not designer frocks. It's not lipstick. It's not body creams. But it might be shoes! A survey of consumers reports people are still planning to buy new shoes. [WWD]
  • Annick Goutal's sales were up 7% on last year in December, but the figure for the average sale dropped. The iconic luxury perfumer is accordingly scaling back its expansion plans. So for now you'll still have to go to France, or the magical land called eBay, for those gorgeous bottles. [Financial Times]
  • Uniqlo is faring better than most. Same-store sales climbed 5.7% in January, and it also grew sales through the difficult months of November and December. Their raft of designer collaborations for the coming months and their commitment to cheap, beautiful basics should put them in good stead. [WWD]
  • Can you imagine New York Fashion Week taking place at Lincoln Center? The Bryant Park Corporation, which runs the park where the tents have dwelt twice-annually since 1993, has frequently clashed with fashion week organizers IMG, and apparently the $2-3 million it receives in rent from IMG every year is no longer enough to keep BCC happy. It wants the giant tents, the stiletto-clad editors, the sulky models, the hyperactive stylists, the vague celebs, the chattering media, the whole faaaaaabulous lot of us out after the coming September. Lincoln Center is in the middle of its own redevelopment, and I can't imagine designers who are mainly headquartered downtown, in Chelsea, or in the garment district being happy with such a faraway location. [New York Times]
  • The Kaiser acquired a furniture company. "One thing is on the body, the other thing is around the body," he shrugged, says Women's Wear Daily. He's also dressing Marianne Faithful on her upcoming tour. [WWD]
  • ABS by Allen Schwatz is rushing production on a $300 knock-off of Michelle Obama's Jason Wu inaugural gown (Wu himself is not producing the one-off dress for sale). Schwartz is also doing a version of Obama's Isabel Toledo sheath, but in ivory, since he thinks women won't buy lemongrass. Which is odd because lemongrass is exactly the kind of color most women would not have considered wearing until we saw the first lady looking so radiant in it. He doesn't give a fig what Jill Biden wears, either, so Reem Acra need not fear a reproduction of the red chiffon sleeveless gown Biden chose for the inauguration. Schwartz has bigger fish to fry, like taking inspiration from what Kate Winslet, Sandra Bullock, and Drew Barrymore wore to the Golden Globes, and guarding against "soft" sales in a market that has seen the designer dresses he copies so heavily discounted that they approach his versions in price. [WSJ]
  • Maybe P. Diddy ripped off an artist's glass sculpture for his perfume bottle. [TMZ]
  • Jason Wu's not going to show fur in his fall ready-to-wear collection, after all. Seems like quite a sudden reversal of concept less than two weeks out from fashion week. [WWD]