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The Official Page of The Fashion Law.

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    We know how the industry's insiders feel, but what about the everyone else? Here are some of my favorite Twitter reactions to the big news ...

    @HauteSanta: It's official Alexander Wang has moved to Balenciaga. I haven't been this upset since the Spice Girls broke up.

    @luichlombardo: Craving 4 dat future @BALENCIAGA accesories by@AlexanderWangNY there will be #epic

    @E_Wash24: Alexander Wang officially for Balenciaga chyeaaaaa.

    @IsobelleWright: Wang announced to head Balenciaga - Largerfield to collaborate with Melissa and me eating all the marshmallows - oh it's a busy Monday!

    @tellingbone: I almost said "Ew, for real?" out loud when I saw that Alexander Wang got the Balenciaga job. Christopher Kane would have been much better!

    @nycR0ACH: Does anyone elses phone auto correct balenciaga to neckerchiefs?

    @HauteDamned: Palace confirms Kate Middleton's pregnancy, Balenciaga confirms Alexander Wang's appointment. Who wins?

    @EatPrayFashion1: Alexander Wang at Balenciaga. Its obvious the Big B is trying hard to be cool again.

    @SuzanneWKNYC: I have very mixed feeling about Alexander Wang for Balenciaga. The heritage of the brand is so technical and Wang is so.... t-shirts.

    @rcollete: Yes He Can. 

    @lavlav_me: я вот не рада, что александр вонг теперь в balenciaga. это значит только одно - резкий рост цен на сумки и обувь 'alexander wang'

    @AllRobKristen: My only comment about Balenciaga .... run, Kristen, run as fast as you can!
    An sorry, but a 2nd: I hope Balenciaga fails. Hard. Go, Nicholas, go.

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    Here's a lawsuit that is just BEGGING to happen. Apparently designer Elisabetta Armellin, the founder of the accessories label V°73, didn't bother doing much research before she decided to put one of the most recognizable fashion designs known to man on a canvas bag. If Armellin had done any research about replicating the image of a Birkin bag on a canvas bag, she would have learned that Hermès doesn't take kindly to such things and when Hermès takes you to court over it, they will take you down.

    Hermès Birkin (left) & V°73 tote (right)

    It happened to Thursday Friday, the company that put the Birkin on a canvas bag last year. What's the issue? Well, to start, a Birkin bag alone (even without the Hermès trademark) is so iconic that consumers associate the bag and images of the bag with its source, Hermès. This is the essence of trade dress protection (a form of trademark protection), which is one of the most difficult types of protection to achieve because showing secondary meaning is a really high bar to meet!   

    In case that's not enough, Armellin is ripping off Rolex, as well. To give you a hint at how intensely Rolex protects its trademark and its likeness in general, the Swiss watch company brought a lawsuit against Brooklyn, NY Rolex Deli for diluting its trademark. Yeah, a deli. So, the Daytona-like bracelets are likely also an epically bad call. While the designer may think she is in the clear because she paints the images on the bags and the bracelets (and then sells them for $200+), the images are pretty accurate and so, I highly doubt the judge is going to care. 

    Rolex Daytona (left) & V°73's yellow gold bracelet (right)

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    You voted and the results are in. The top looks from our weekly emerging designer poll: Keira Knightley in Erdem Spring 2013, followed by Rainey MacDowell in the Cushnie et Ochs Pre-Fall 2012 bra top (that I am dying for)! Up this week Bibhu Mohapatra, Prabal, Alessandra Rich, and more. See more emerging design looks from this week below and cast your vote ...

    Gossip Girl actress Kelly Rutherford in Bibhu Mohapatra Fall 2012 (styled by Lo'renzo Hill-White)

    Olivia Palermo in Alessandro Rich Spring 2013

    Actress Isabelle Fuhrman in Prabal Gurung Resort 2013

    Chinese actress and model, Angelababy, in Pamela Love jewelry

    Caroline Seiber in Christopher Kane Fall 2012


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    How insanely STUNNING is this Ivory Tulle Gown Embroidered with Steer's Skull Threadwork, Sequin Sheeting and Ostrich Feathers from Prabal Gurung's Fall 2012 Collection. The image appears in this month's Elle Mexico.

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    After 26 years of creating some of the most iconic, stylish (and comfortable) shoes for the streets and red carpets alike, it comes as no surprise that Stuart Weitzman was recognized with Footwear News' Lifetime Achievement Award this year. Weitzman started working for his father's shoe company over 50 years ago, and has developed into quite the footwear master. Described by many as a craftsman, Weitzman focuses equally on fit, construction, and style. However, for being an artist, Weitzman is a surprisingly savvy merchant and smart businessman. I have witnessed his involvement in technical matters, such as drafting the language of contracts and reviewing lease provisions, to his involvement in details right down to the the name of each shoe style, and his regular trips to the SW factory in Spain.  These key components, as well as Weitzman's passion for his company, have made him a favorite among customers and celebs alike.  

    Despite being the game for over two decades, Weitzman continues to stay fresh while producing high-quality and classic designs, recently debuting a higher-end collection, SW1 and expanding into handbags. Although his interest in the company is being transferred to The Jones Group, Weitzman will remain as lead designer.  Taking this role as seriously as ever, Weitzman asserts he will never make and ugly shoe saying:  "You have to stick what you're known for and keep making it better."  Well Stuart, if you keep making the shoes, we'll keep buying them. Congratulations to Stuart (and his amazing team) on all of your achievements! 

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    Nicolas Ghesquière may be out at Balenciaga, but he is not out of the spotlight. The former creative director joined Twitter today under the name @TWNGhesquiere, and while he hasn't tweeted anything just yet, he is up on his follow game. The 11 accounts he follows include a few people from French Elle, Cathy Horyn (obviously), Pierre Hardy (who designs the footwear for Balenciaga), "it" stylist Lori Goldstein and others. No word yet on if this is really Ghesquière, but W Magazine’s Edward Enninful posted a welcome message (a sign in favor of authenticity). More to come ...

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    What do Peter Som, Jack and Lazaro of Proenza Schouler, Joseph Altuzarra, Pamela Love, Prabal Gurung, Tory Burch, David and Marcus of rag & bone, Narciso Rodriguez, Michael Bastian, and Carolina Herrera have in common? Well, they are all members of the CFDA, but what I'm referring to is their involvement in this year's Project Art. In case you're not familiar with Project Paz, now is your chance! It is an amazing NYC-based organization aims to bring arts education and safe play spaces to children in Ciudad Juárez, a region in Mexico that is currently plagued with an increasing amount of street violence and drug wars. So, these designers and others have put their design aesthetic to work and snapped pictures, which will be auctioned off on December 17th at a cocktail party hosted by Michelle Harper, Misha Nonoo, Nic Roldan, Ana de la Reguera, and Phoebe & Annette Stephens in New York. More images and info below ...

    a photograph by pamela love

    “The protection and education of children growing up in volatile environments is one of the most important causes,” says Prabal Gurung, whose photograph, “Passion“ will be up for auction. “We need to do all we can for the next generation.” Learn more about this year's event and Project Paz, and buy tickets here! We'll be there to support this truly wonderful cause, and hope you will, too!

    images courtesy of project paz

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    Read our piece on how fast fashion is damaging to emerging design talent and to the U.S. fashion design industry as a whole at KENTON

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    We saw this one coming. Khroma Beauty by Kourtney, Kim & Khloe, the sisters new makeup collection, is the source of more legal drama. Their cosmetics line hit stores less than a year ago and has been under fire for its similarity to Beverly Hills-based Chroma Makeup. Michael Rey, the co-owner of Chroma, threatened suit in late October, alleging that the Kardashians' collection is creating consumer confusion (the key to a trademark infringement case) and diluting the Chroma brand. We told you that KROMA, yet another makeup company (under Lee Tillett Inc.) has is a federally registered trademark for the KROMA name for cosmetics, which has given rise to the latest problem for the reality TV sisters. Come one girls, a search of the trademark database is not that difficult. 

    Anyway, KROMA sent the Kardashians (via their less than legally-competent lisensee, Boldface Licensing) a cease and desist letter citing trademark infringement, which has clearly not deterred the sale and promotion of Kardashian Khroma. In fact, Boldface filed suit on Friday in the U.S. District Court Central District of California's Western Division to seek a declaratory judgment (which would basically be a judgment from the court holding whether or not Khroma is infringing KROMA's trademark). According to Boldface’s complaint, KROMA “consists solely of a descriptive term and lacks any inherent distinctive meaning to the relevant consuming public and therefore, is conceptually weak.” No word yet on whether KROMA has filed suit or if Chroma is in on the anti-Kardashian action.

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    With so much legal drama going on (and Alex Wang being appointed at Balenciaga), you may have forgotten about the intern class action lawsuit pending against Hearst Corporation. Former Harper's Bazaar intern, Diana Wang, filed suit earlier this year alleging that Hearst (via its various magazines) violated federal and state labor laws by hiring unpaid interns in lieu of paid employees. Well, the suit has since gained steam, other plaintiffs have joined (about 3,000 reportedly), and last Friday, a some former Harper's Bazaar interns, received the following e-mail. Sounds like they're looking for allies. Read the email below ...

    I understand you interned at Harper's Bazaar. As you may have heard, Hearst has been sued by former interns who claim they should have been paid for their internships. I am a lawyer for Hearst and I am collecting stories from interns who valued the opportunities and experiences they received from their internships. If you would be willing to speak with me about your internship, please respond to this email or call me at (212) 649-2076. 
    You have no obligation to speak with me, of course, and if you are represented by counsel in the lawsuit against Hearst or plan to opt-in to the case, please disregard this message and do not respond. If that is not the case, I hope to hear from you.

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    He has walked for Richard Chai, Marc Jacobs, Alexander McQueen, Burberry and Louis Vuitton, and graced the pages of Italian GQ, Vogue Hommes Japan, and L'Officiel - just to name a few. Yet, David Hlinka says he has no sense of style and has had the same haircut since third grade. The American-born model, known for his charming boyish quality, talks to The Fashion Law about his look, how modeling contracts work, and why he loves working with emerging designer, Antonio Azzuolo. [This interview was initially posted on October 31st, but due to complications from Hurricane Sandy around that time, here is your chance to read it for the first time or see it again.] 

    The Fashion Law – Business today is so much about branding do you feel like models are brands? How do you think you are different from other models? 

    David Hlinka I don’t think Models are brands, but I think brands have established looks for themselves that some models fit into and some models may never. I'm not sure where I fall ... I do know that I don’t look like everyone else in the room for a casting, though. Mostly this is because of the lack of hair I sport. From a fair skinned male, a military style buzz cut didn't seem very common when I was signed, all I saw was a plethora of hair.

    The Fashion Law – Among female models, there is always a lot of controversy regarding age and the girls being so young (13, 14, 15) and working too many hours. Have you noticed that this happens among male models?

    David Hlinka I think the women's industry has a lot more pressure in numerous areas. For guys I really haven't seen that many starting at ages younger than 16. I don't think there is that urgency of finding them and working them as soon as possible. From what I have seen, as men get older, more markets open up. Their career doesn't end due to age. There is mainstream advertising with boys and with matured men. Whereas for women, I feel like they are generally advertised in this everlasting age of early to mid 20s.

    The Fashion Law – You started with Wilson Model Management. How long did you sign on with them for? And that's not exclusive because you have other agencies, right? 

    David Hlinka Yes, I was discovered by Brandon Wilson of Wilson Model Management and placed with Root Management here in New York. It is a three year contract agreement that has them representing me as my Mother Agent. There is an exclusivity to New York, but through my mother agent, I have been given representation in other countries where other foreign agencies have a stronger knowledge and closer relationship with the clients in their area.

    The Fashion Law – Last year, there was a lot of press that you were a "fresh new face." Do you think the industry still sees you as new? 

    David Hlinka I have been signed now for just over a year and a half, so I am still fairly new. I think these last 6 months I have grown up in the industry and really came out of my own personal shell. As for the industry's perspective... in areas such as shows and print, I have certainly been around and have gotten my face out there. Although, I can see the possibility of being considered a New Face as advertising campaigns are still an untapped market for me. Though, in this industry, with everything moving forward so quickly, I think the word ‘New’ has a very abbreviated shelf life, as there is always a search for the next best and unseen, whether its the clothes or the faces.

    November 2012 issue of Men’s Fudge

    The Fashion Law – We've spoken about you working with Antonio Azzuolo, who has such a young and yet, very promising brand. What do you like about working with him in particular?

    David Hlinka Antonio was one of the first designers who casted me for a show, and the first to have me open a show. I have worked with Antonio many times, over this past year and a half, and have always enjoyed it. Antonio is very personable and down to earth, as are the people he has working with him. So, its like I am spending the day working with a group of my friends... and who wouldn't enjoy that!

    The Fashion Law – Last thing I knew, you were studying film making. Are you already thinking about your next move or do you want to keep modeling for awhile? 

    David Hlinka Yeah, I have always loved working behind the camera ever since my father gave me an old camcorder when I was 12. Ironically, I never wanted to be in front of the camera, I was perfectly content doing all the behind the scenes work. It was a fascinating hobby and I saw its potential as a way to travel the world (an early dream of mine.) However, after having modeled for a few months, I realized a lifestyle of constant travel wasn't something I would desire in the long run. Its absolutely amazing now and I still cant get enough of it! I couldn't have asked for a more amazing opportunity, but someday I would like to settle down. So, I will certainly keep modeling and allow it to lead me to other opportunities but as for post-modeling... I have had some career changes in mind for sure and it has led me towards a degree in Childhood Education.

    The Fashion Law – Is there a particular designer or design house that you absolutely want to work with?

    David Hlinka Before I got into this industry I was pretty much blind to the fashion world and industry. All I knew was from whatever was overheard via the girls at school. So, mostly all I know now is from what I learned first hand. Obviously working with well known designers is cool, and many of them have been really fun as well. So, that combination has made them ones I will always love working with!

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  • 12/05/12--08:44: Cushnie et Ochs x Playboy
  • Cushnie et Ochs has teamed up with Playboy Magazine. Designers Carly Cushnie and Michelle Ochs were approached by the magazine to design a limited-edition piece: a seriously soft leather bra top that will retail for $695 exclusively at the Playboy e-commerce site. “Playboy is such a quintessential brand,” said Carly Cushnie of collab, which launches today. The designers are on hand in Miami to host a pop-up lounge at the Delano for the Playboy A$AP concert during Art Basel.

    “Partnering with Playboy presented an opportunity for us to channel Cushnie et Ochs’s seductive, feminine aesthetic with Playboy‘s signature playful sensuality,” said design duo. This comes after the brand was on everyone's mind after Kim Kardashian stepped out in their Pre-Fall 2012 bra top and Rainey MacDowell appeared in bra in Town and Country's October issue. 

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    The Tory Burch, Chris Burch lawsuit keeps getting uglier. This former couple were in court this week stemming from Chris' lawsuit against Tory for sabotaging his ability to sell his shares in the Tory Burch company, as well as other claims, including breach of contract. Tory filed her own claims against her ex., and even more recently, her lawyer accused the Chris Burch legal team of withholding pertinent documents from discovery. The Tory Burch legal team asked that Chris Burch be compelled to produce any communication between himself and the Tory Burch board, as well as his travel calendar. It seems these documents were requested to help Tory's legal team piece together their argument, which centers on the claim that Chris used Tory Burch investors to fund his "copycat" store C. Wonder. 

    Chris Burch served as a consultant for the Tory Burch brand, and the Tory team alleges that he used this opportunity to do research for his own competing venture. Without the requested documents, Tory Burch's team says, Chris Burch cannot prove his defense that the Tory Burch brand knew of his plans all along. In this case of he said/she said and marital bliss turned to bitter acrimony, the question of whether the former couple will ever come to an adequate resolution is especially glaring after this round. More to come ...

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    Elettra Wiedemann looked pretty amazing at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in NYC last night to celebrate the premiere of HBO's In Vogue: The Editor's Eye. The model is wearing a frock from Cushnie et Ochs' Fall 2012 collection. 

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    Kate Spade is expanding. The brand is launching a new and different brand this Spring entitled, Saturday. Yes, its called Saturday. Not to be confused with NYC-based brand, Saturdays Surf, aka Saturdays, which opened in August 2009. Pick another day of the week, Kate Spade. Coincidence? Maybe. However, considering the fact that Kate Spade's Soho New York store in like a five minute walk from the Saturdays store and that the brand is not exactly a secret (its private label has been sold at J. Crew), maybe not. 

    Also a little odd, Spade's new venture will open its first brick and mortar shop in Tokyo. The choice of locale would not be terribly suspect if Saturdays didn't already have a store there. Of its three stores, it has one in Soho, one in the West Village and one in Tokyo. Finally, the two brands' merchandise categories (apparel, accessories, home goods, etc.) and price points will be fairly similar. The only positive thing about the similar names: Spade's brand will primarily be womenswear. We'll see if this leads to consumer confusion ...

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    Rising menswear designer, Marlon Gobel recently collaborated with women’s footwear deity, Christian Louboutin, on a series of men’s shoes meant to compliment Gobel’s runway offerings.  This is remarkable for two reasons: 1. The shoes themselves are pretty incredible. They are not meant to supplant your Converse sneakers for daily wear (unless gold spiked loafers are your daily wear or you are Scott Disick, in which case: go right ahead). But, for the right occasion and on the right man, these shoes are absolute stunners and will probably make you the most talked about guy in the room (in a good way). 2. Christian Louboutin rarely collaborates with anyone, and this is his first menswear collaboration to date. While many in-the-know have been aware of Gobel’s rise to prominence for a quite few seasons now, for the uninitiated, this should be more than enough to keep him on your radar. 

    If case you need a reminder, Marlon Gobel is known for his otherworldly and ahead of his time designs (he showed fruit prints before Dolce & Gabbana) that are grounded by solid tailoring and craftsmanship. So, after seeing one of Gobel’s first runway shows, Christian Louboutin himself was so impressed that he offered to design a men’s footwear collection to go along with Gobel’s designs. If he's good enough for Louboutin, he's good enough for us. And with that, take a look at what these two talented designers have wrought and let us know what you think in the comments. 

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    The British Advertising Standards Authority means business. It has a history of calling out fashion designers for less-than-tame ad campaigns, and now its turned its attention to what seems like a very easy target: American Apparel. The company has been in hot water with the ASA in the past (in 2009 the ASA banned the company from running an ad featuring a "semi-nude" model because the woman appears to be under 16), and yet again, American Apparel is sexualizing seemingly underage models. American Apparel's response: the ads of young girls in T-shirts are "completely decent and a fair representation of [our] product." According to the ASA's complaint the specific ads for t-shirts and hosiery are “offensive, irresponsible, and overtly sexual." The ASA apparently doesn't take kindly to ads that feature "a young girl with her breasts visible through a shirt and others featuring overtly sexual poses." Last year, Marc Jacobs came under fire for "sexualizing a child." The child was a 17-year old Dakota Fanning. The result: the ads are banned in the U.K. 

    In other news, American Apparel CEO, Dov Charney, is being sued by Michael Bumblis, the former manager of a Malibu American Apparel store. Bumblis alleges that in April Charney accused him of working for a rival retailer at a recent industry convention and called him a “wannabe Jew” and a “fag.” In case that's not enough, Charney reportedly attempted to choke the former employee and rubbed his face in the dirt. Between incidents like this and the company's Los Angeles sweatshop labor, does anyone else think that Charney is an all-around loser?

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    Remember Kidult? The graffiti artist who tagged Marc Jacobs' Soho store the day after the Met Ball. He's at it again. Last month, a few days after the release of the much-hyped Maison Martin Margiela with H&M collection, Kidult left his mark on Margiela’s Brussels store. His latest work features a heart along with the word “Love” scrawled over it, the words “OUR MISERY, NOT YOURS!” and three skulls to the side. Kidult spoke out about his work, saying: “All these retail outlets have once used graffiti as a commercial tool to get more money and be 'cool' without knowing anything about the culture. I didn’t simply say 'hello' to them. If they really like graffiti, I just gave them what they love.” So, far he's tagged Supreme, Hermès, Céline, Kenzo, Marc Jacobs, and now, Margiela. Who's next? My prediction: Givenchy, especially given its recent rise to streetwear fame, or Balenciaga, which is set to "expand" following the appointment of Alexander Wang. Thoughts?

    image courtesy of street art belgium

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    NYC-based artist Wil Fry (and potential high fashion foe) has been on our radar for sometime now, and with the ultra-limited release of his Givenchy Nets jersey, we're not the only ones watching him. If you are not one of the lucky few that were gifted a Givenchy jersey by the artist, now is your chance to get your hands on a Wil Fry exclusive. He has put his latest work, the Expensive Jersey, an update of his S/S 2012 Expensive Teeup for pre-sale on his site. In true Wil Fry style, only 36 will be made. Legal enthusiasts keep reading ...

    Yes, those are Chanel, Jil Sander, Margiela, Balmain, Dior, and Lanvin  logos on there. Infringement? Probably. He didn't get permission to use them. But Fry (who frequently comments on the workings of the fashion industry) is likely in the clear. Not only is his intent behind the shirts a clear parody of logo-whoring in the high-fashion industry, which is often deemed fair use, but establishing consumer confusion in regards to a specific design house would likely be difficult here with so many brands displayed on the tee. Plus, I'm not so sure consumers will be confused about the origin of this shirt, unless they are under the impression that Chanel, Jil Sander, Valentino, Balmain, Dior, Lanvin, etc. did a MEGA collaboration for the first time in history!!

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    It's Friday, and you know what that means. Time for our weekly Andrej Pejic post. Today, here is Andrej and some of his unconventional gorgeous model friend, including Lea T, Erika Linder, Rick Genest, Willy Cartier and Shaun Ross. Diversity is the modeling industry may be at an all-time high. 

    images courtesy of thefashionspot

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