Fashion, in times of recession, is an ugly place. Recently, I spotted a prominent Mumbai socialite (who, not long ago, changed her surname) in a Moschino number.
Nothing wrong about the dress, only that I had spotted the same dress six months ago on a Moschino publicist. Designer labels have something called ‘Press Pieces’, which are usually worn by the label’s publicists and/or used for editorial photoshoots. These ‘Press Pieces’ are then sold off at ‘Sample Sales’ which are kept hush-hush, prive to select socialites who lap them up at steal-deals. This socialite too, probably, got a few dresses from sample sales, but ask her where she got this one and she says, “From London during summer break.” The term ‘sale’ is sacrilege to socialites and they wouldn’t dare be spotted at one. Yet, courtesy friendly publicists and store managers, I know which socialite bought what during the 70 per cent off sales! But sales and fashion editor discounts (40 per cent in exchange for a good plug) are what fashionistas resort to for belt-tightening. After all, credit crunch is no excuse to let standards drop!
Luxury labels are providing home-delivery services to clients at their hotels. A store manager was asked to take a rack full of clothes to the hotel room of a pot-bellied moneybag and model them there. In complete disgust, she quit the job! I know of designers who haven’t paid salaries to their staff for months and now the kaarigars are threatening to go to the labour court. Ano-ther designer hired a celebrity to promote his label but hasn’t paid him a dime yet.
People associated with the fashion industry are worse. I met a stylist who was in tears after his ‘long-term friend’ told his client that he was working for a rival (a lie). The stylist was instantly dropped and the scheming friend took over the season’s photoshoots! A photographer I know even discovered that a so-called buddy was spreading rumours that he had a drug problem. With plotting, lying and bitching rife, apparently all’s fair in love and war-drobe!