Retail Fashion Directors: R.I.P.

cityfile · 03/05/09 10:22AM

Even if you've never stopped to think about what the fashion director of a store actually does—they're not buyers, or merchandisers, or window dressers, or marketing execs, but sprinkle their oracular wisdom (shoulder pads: back! Heels: high! Hems: flouncy!) over all of these domains—you may still be taken aback to learn that this civilizing breed of person is endangered, bordering on, dare we say it, obsolete. Both Michael Fink of Saks and LaVelle Olexa of Lord & Taylor have been let go, neither to be replaced, and their counterparts at other stores must be wondering what the future holds. But who, or what, is to blame for this sad state of affairs? It practically goes without saying that it's those twin destroyers of culture: blogs and reality TV!

Theyskens Out at Nina Ricci, Brioni's $43,000 Suit

cityfile · 01/26/09 05:33PM

• Olivier Theyskens is, in fact, parting ways with Nina Ricci. [Grazia, FWD]
• The couture shows in Paris began today and they're as over-the-top as ever. [NYM]
• Brioni just launched a line of suits that cost as much as $43,000 apiece. "The timing was not fortunate for us," says Brioni's CEO. Go figure. [WSJ]
Tom Ford has introduced a line of men's jeans that retail for $990. They're the same jeans that Ford wears, and the button is plated with 18-karat gold, though, so it's totally worth it. [WWD]
• Vivienne Westwood's ads featuring Pam Anderson have debuted. [Pipeline]
• Hartmarx, Barack Obama's "favorite tailor," has gone bust. [WWD]
• Saks fashion director Michael Fink has left the company. [NYM]
• What do retail employees do during a recession? Try to look busy. [NYT]