Recession

Things are heating up in a funny old corner of the world: West Hollywood, where the anti-fur movement and retailers are going to war. Yesterday the City Council, or three out of its five members, voted in favor of making it the first city in The Whole United States to ban the sale of fur. They are PETA superheroes!

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So it all came true, and PPR did, indeed, buy Italian men’s wear luxury brand Brioni. So far, so rumoured. But what does it mean? Seems to me there are two main implications to the deal. Read more

Tonight is the beginning of what is being billed as the biggest Fashion’s Night Out ever, although it’s more like Fashion’s Afternoon Out: a noon-9pm (Saturday) shopping extravaganza in Japan launched by an evening pre-shopping gala, with some of the proceeds presumably going to benefit earthquake relief efforts. But that’s not the half of it.

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You know that three’s-a-trend rule? Well, note FOUR recent events in four different countries, beginning with the Van Cleef and Arpels announcement of “L’Ecole Van Cleef & Arpels,” and the Instituto Marangoni and Ermenegildo Zegna announcement of the renewal of their Masters in Menswear. School, school everywhere! Read more

After the Versace/Missoni condos, and Fendi yachts comes this exciting titbit: Condé Nast International is likewise embracing the lifestyle concept, and opening a Vogue café in Kiev, and a GQ bar in Istanbul. Well, if the companies they cover can do it, why shouldn’t the publishers? Isn’t Vogue as much a brand as the brands in their pages?
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I’ve been perusing a new magazine named “Astonish” that claims to be “the answer to an industry starved for smart, unique and visually-stimulating Fashion & Art content.” I have to say, I wasn’t actually that astonished by the photographs, nor did the contents, leave my mouth agape. But the business strategy is intriguing.

See, “While other publications work with the same pool of talent year after year,

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Fashion can make allies of the most seemingly apposite of pairs. Last week, ex-US Secretary of the Treasury, current Harvard Prof and FT columnist Larry Summers announced that: “One of the things you learn as a college president is that if an undergraduate is wearing a tie and jacket on Thursday afternoon at three o’clock, there are two possibilities. One is that they’re looking for a job and have an interview; the other is that they are an asshole.” Then, yesterday, Peter Bingle, chairman of PR company Bell Pottinger, revealed in a blog that he had received “a letter informing me that my membership of Soho House and Shoreditch House was being revoked ‘effective immediately… because I have disregarded Soho House’s ‘casual dress code.’ I have been banned for wearing a suit!”

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The Boston Consulting Group has released an exciting new report: “Navigating the New Consumer Realities,” which involves spending movements and approaches they have been tracking across the globe over the last three-five years, plus a survey of over 24,000 consumers. Guess what? Consumers are not so optimistic about their financial future and spending after all!
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The first thing I thought when I heard the news a few weeks ago that Conde Nast had signed a 25-year, $2 billion lease for a million feet in the new One World Trade Center building was: but where will they shop? Where will they eat? What will they do with their free time? Today the question was answered: they will shop at the new mall in the World Financial Centre!  Read more

The Bain luxury goods “worldwide markets study” spring update is out and – wow, things are looking good. Market growth for 2010 was 12% — 2% more than the most optimistic predictions! But wait: don’t be fooled into thinking all you have to do is ride the coming gold-plated wave.
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