Victoria's Secret is being sued for $15 million by one of its suppliers, an outfit called Zephyr Hosiery. Zephyr alleges that Victoria's Secret breached its contract by cutting deals with Zephyr's own contractors and getting them to make hosiery for VS on the cheap — but that the chain continued to promote the new, lower-quality hosiery with Zephyr's product images and packaging, and photographed Italian-made Zephyr hosiery on VS models to make the new, crappy tights seem all fancy. Zephyr also says Victoria's Secret is reneging on their current sourcing contract — and has left Zephyr with $100,000 in VS merchandise that the chain won't allow to be delivered because it wants Zephyr to sign a new contract that would give VS ownership of all Zephyr's intellectual property, including patents, and bar Zephyr from making hosiery for any other company. Maybe Victoria's Secret is actually total, capitalistic ruthlessness? [WWD]
Mariacarla Boscono appears nude and eight months pregnant in the new LOVE. It's refreshing to see a pregnant woman not in the boring old cradling-my-stomach pose. [Fashin]
Ashley Smith wears shorts over tights in Forever 21's fall campaign. [WWD]
Carine Roitfeld released a video teaser for her upcoming magazine, CR Fashion Book, today. There are behind-the-scenes moments from editorial shoots, lots of footage of Roitfeld getting papped on her way to fashion shows, and we learn that the former Vogue Paris editor vouvoies with Karl Lagerfeld. [Vimeo]
More details have emerged about Friday's fatal shooting at an accessories company in the Empire State Building. Hazan Imports, where the victim was a vice-president and the shooter was a former designer, designs and produces handbags, wallets, shoes, and belts for cheap stores like Forever 21 and Strawberry. The company was sued by Louis Vuitton for copying its logo print in 2003; the suit was settled out of court in 2005. Jeffrey Johnson was laid off from his job at Hazan last year; he shot and killed Steven Ercolino, a former boss with whom Johnson had repeatedly clashed. After drawing his weapon in front of two police officers, Johnson was fatally shot. Police gunfire injured nine innocent bystanders. Women's Wear Daily has this eyewitness account from an unnamed beauty executive:
Walking north across 34th Street, he heard eight or nine gunshots, saw the man beside him drop to the ground from a bullet wound, then saw another man stumble from being shot in the arm and a woman across the street fall to the sidewalk after being shot in the foot. Although he had his back to the gunman, he could tell by the expressions of the people walking towards him, and the speed at which they were running, that they could see Johnson. The executive said he darted to one of the oversize 34th Street Partnership planters, and crouched down there for protection. "Your brain just doesn't register in a situation like that. It doesn't happen like in the movies where someone is shot and boom they go down. These people were falling slowly," he said.
Disgraced former Christian Dior designer John Galliano has been stripped of his Légion d'Honneur medal by an official decree from President François Hollande. Last year, Galliano was convicted of hate speech in relation to an incident where he told two strangers at a café, "I love Hitler. People like you would be dead. Your mothers, your forefathers, would all be fucking gassed." [AFP]
Well, well, well: Glamour editor Cindi Leive scored a sit-down interview with President Obama. It'll run in the October issue. The interview took place before Todd Akin made his infamous comments about "legitimate rape" and conception, but Leive did ask Obama questions about women's health. [WWD]
"The fashion industry is the second most polluting industry in the world after oil," says designer Yael Aflalo, whose label Reformation has been quietly gaining a cult following. (We first heard about from the actress Shenae Grimes, who raved about Reformation as a source for inexpensive, beautiful, and responsibly made clothes.) Aflalo and her 50 employees work do not work according to the established fashion calendar with its long lead times and abundant waste: they make clothes for next month ("I don't like selling people coats in July," says Aflalo), not six months hence, and they do it by zero-waste principles. Reformation offers reworked vintage garments and new garments made from surplus materials. And you can get a dress there for $50 on sale. Aflalo says she had the idea when she grew weary of the waste inherent in her old business, a contemporary line called Ya-Ya:
"I also didn't like how much the fashion industry is set up for waste. When I would order lookbooks the minimum would be like 5,000, but I would only need 400. There was so much paper and extra samples that by the time I closed Ya-Ya my warehouse was filled with ten years of waste."
She adds, "I don't want to make things I don't need or that other people don't need." [Fashionista]
An unnamed German investor has acquired the worldwide trademark rights to the Rudi Gernreich name and plans to relaunch the brand. Gernreich was an American designer known for his ultramodern designs in the 1960s, including his famous monokini swimsuit. [WWD]
Former America's Next Top Model contestant Kim Stolz — you remember her: the lesbian who did really well at the T.V. commercial challenge — who now works in finance, has been hired as a vice-president of equity-derivative sales at Citibank. [Bloomberg]
Catherine Deneuve is the face of legendary Paris department store Le Bon Marché's 160th anniversary celebrations. The store commissioned a short documentary from Loïc Prigent in which Deneuve walks around the Left Bank and talks about life, as well as a set of illustrations of the actress by graphic novelist Marjane Satrapi. The drawings will be the basis of the store's window displays for the anniversary celebrations. [WWD]
"Shoes can be part of the sensuality and the sexuality of a woman. Not only this, they can allow a woman to inhabit different identities — and even help her to adopt a different character, should she desire it," says Roland Mouret. Mouret now designs footwear for Robert Clergerie, so he would say that. [Refinery29]
Italian police did a counterfeit bust in Milan and seized 40,000 fake accessories, among them some 12,000 counterfeit Louis Vuitton and Burberry scarves. [WWD]
Wanna dress like Kate Middleton? There's an app for that. [Vogue UK]
Jenn Rogien, the costume designer for the show Girls, offers this description of the main characters via the brands she believes they would identify with:
"Hannah would shop at Anthropologie and Madewell, while Marnie would go to Tahari and Diane von Furstenberg. Shoshanna goes to Milly, H&M and Victoria's Secret, and Jessa does vintage shops as well as Loehmann's and Zara."
The story ends with this ominous line: "Rogien, who is represented by Matchbook Co., said she is in discussions for brand collaborations." Translation: Girls clothing, coming soon. [WWD]
Carlos Slim sold another 705,000 shares of his Saks holdings. That's on top of the 1.5 million shares the Mexican billionaire dumped last week. He retains some 24.3 million shares. [WWD]
Tory Burch is seeking new investors but isn't in a hurry about it. Over the past year, the company has met with Louis Vuitton Moët Hennessy and Coach Inc., but now seems to be in talks with the Carlyle Group. Here's the latest on the matter of her ex-husband:
A search for a new investor has been complicated by the designer's strained relationship with her ex-husband, who owns about a third of the company and is working on establishing the C. Wonder chain, as well as a string of other retail concepts. C. Wonder increased tensions between the two sides, with sources contending it bears too close a resemblance to the brand Chris Burch helped his former wife create — an allegation he denies. For months, the industry was atwitter over the potential of a Burch vs. Burch lawsuit over C. Wonder, but so far nothing has come of it.
Observers have noted that anyone buying out Chris Burch's stake might also be funding a potential competitor. The designer and her ex-husband are said to be trying to reach some sort of a C. Wonder resolution. There is the possibility that the chain, which is new and still developing, could evolve into a format that is not quite so irksome to the Tory camp.
And now, a moment with Lanvin designer Alber Elbaz. Alber, do designers see themselves as rivals?
"The first collection Raf Simons did for Dior was gorgeous. I'm not jealous of people — I'm only jealous of people who can eat and not gain weight. I respect talent. When I see talent and when I see a good person who comes with the talent, I melt.
Fashion used to be a family business. For years and years, it was the kind of business in which mothers and fathers and children and grandchildren would all work together. And there was something in that. Because family is the only place where you feel comfortable enough to make mistakes, and in creation, mistakes are really important. They drive you forward. We have no titles at Lanvin; at lunch everybody eats together and the studio feels as one. I don't believe in a hierarchy, in a pyramid of people reporting to other people who report to me. I always say that if you really want the truth you have to go to the basement because that is where things happen. If you look for the truth in the penthouse, usually it's fake."