• L.A. boutique Kitson can't give away poor Lauren Conrad's collection. Well, they can, but not to customers. "They're giving away her collection to Caitlin's Closet, a charity that gives girls dresses for their big events, like the prom and homecoming." I have a terrible image of no one choosing her dresses for prom, though - I mean, they have other options, right? [TMZ]
  • Designer Maria Pinto's star has risen along with client Michelle Obama's. 'While she does point out things Mrs. Obama might like, Ms. Pinto said she has never dressed her for events. Of the purple dress worn the night Mr. Obama claimed the nomination, Ms. Pinto said it was not planned. "Michelle is not scheming like her wardrobe should make certain points."' [NY Times]
  • In a match made in pink, Upper East Side, Gossip-Girly heaven, Charlotte Ronson and Shoshonna Lonstein team up for beachwear. "The two, who attended high school together at the The Nightingale-Bamford School, have joined forces on a beach line called Made With Love. Launching at retail in February, the collection includes printed women's and girls' bathing suits - a one-piece and several bikini styles - and matching printed beach towels and cover-ups." [WWD]
  • Anti-fur activists would really prefer the pope not wear this one ceremonial hat trimmed in ermine. Cause that's obviously the archaic church tradition the pope really needs to address first. I'm not saying this one 13th century cap isn't going to start an international run on ermines, but still... [MSNBC]
  • More on fashion week not requiring models to be healthy: "Hilary Riva, chief executive officer of the British Fashion Council, said in an open letter Wednesday that a yearlong model health inquiry deems certificates "an unworkable solution." "From our conversations with our international counterparts in New York, Milan and Paris, it has become clear that they do not recognize the need for an international health certificate," Riva wrote. [WWD]
  • Maybe she's born with it? "Maybelline will give out $10,000 grants to 10 people who have changed lives through education. Post your nominee at maybelline.com." [NY Daily News]
  • An event I secretly really, really want to go to: "Gamorama, Macy's annual glitzfest to benefit children's cancer research, will be all about the '80s Friday night, featuring Cyndi Lauper and MC Hammer." Have already put in a request for "I Had The Time of My Life." Although not, actually, invited. [Star Tribune]
  • Helped by weak buck, Estee Lauder is way up. [Reuters]
  • In its desperate resuscitation efforts, Liz Claiborne gives the unceremonious boot to striped-tights staple Sigrid Olsen. "It is a curious development in the fickle business of fashion that clothing labels like Ms. Olsen's, made by and for the baby boomer generation, are among those being hardest hit by the current economic turmoil and retail< retrenchment." [NY Times]
  • Skechers desperate to acquire Heelys! "After Wednesday's close, Skechers said it would pay nearly $143 million, or $5.25 a share in cash, for each share of Heelys. Skechers said the offer would give Heelys' stockholders an 8.2% premium to the closing price of the company's shares on Aug. 12." [The Street]
  • New High School Musical panties deemed inappropriate for children? "The underwear, for girls as young as seven, are to promote the popular Disney film High School Musical and have "Dive In" written on the front. The phrase is a reference to a scene in film where characters dive into a swimming pool. But the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (NSPCC) and the National Union of Teachers (NUT) have both criticized the underwear, describing it as "inappropriate"." [Telegraph]
  • Trying to smarten up their image, Sears unveils Fashion Week exhibit. '"What we really wanted to do was bring a taste of Fashion Week to people who would normally never get to sit under the tents or get to see a runway show," said Sears spokeswoman Amy Dimond. The retailer will also hold an exclusive kick-off party meant to get those in attendance, like fashion industry executives, to look "at Sears in a way that people may have not in the past." she said. [Reuters]
  • Buyer and showroom head Cynthia O'Connor may be "the smartest woman in fashion" according to BlackBook. "COC + Co builds brands because we have a long-term strategy, not a ‘sell it today and collect your check' philosophy." O'Connor loves it just so. "When people walk in, they can see the success and that validates the experience." [BlackBook]
  • Asos.com CEO says they're gonna be "the amazon.com of the fashion industry. "As well as constantly evolving the mix of brands stocked, the etailer is implementing a range of initiatives - from the launch of a marketplace for second-hand clothes to homepages tailored for customers - to stay one step ahead of its increasingly-growing band of competitors." [VogueUK]
  • "An ex-hasidic fashion designer uses Jewish symbolism in his designs, offending many devout Jews." I'm more offended by the designs themselves, not to be flippant. [Reuters]
  • Without any irony: you can now buy Ralph Lauren Polo from your phone. "Taking its philosophy of "merchan-tainment" to a new level, Polo Ralph Lauren is launching into mobile commerce - m-commerce - incorporating echnology that allows shoppers to buy Polo merchandise from their cell phones." [WWD]

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