Haute Couture: A premature death?

Merrill Lynch and Cap Gemini issued the 2007 edition of their annual World Wealth Report last week and the Financial Times and other media took notice, remarking on the dramatic growth of high-net worth individuals and the risky investment strategies that have helped make the world's rich even richer (subscription required). And then, today's WWD reported on the dramatic rise in Haute Couture sales experienced by houses from Dior to Chanel to Givenchy. Was Haute Couture's death knell premature? Conventional wisdom says that the Haute Couture lines of famous Parisian fashion houses are more like publicity machines and creative R&D playgrounds. For the price of  a collection of  hand-made, intricately designed dresses, the maisons of Paris get millions of dollars…

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Rodnik: This is not a rock band

Selfridges in London held an event tonight celebrating the launch of a new Surreal Things exhibit at the Victoria & Albert museum. Anyone walking down Oxford Street over the past week has probably seen the designer windows commissioned by the Oxford Street emporium, showing the creative work of Victor & Rolf and John Galliano, among others. [If you haven't seen the windows, you can see photos of them on Susie Bubble's site]. Another window has been designed by the dynamic duo of Rich and Phil, also known as Rodnik, who were the real stars of tonight's launch event. I first met the Rodnik guys during New York Fashion Week in September 2006. I had been introduced to them via email…

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Creativity and Commerce: The Arcade Fire

Yes, this blog is a commentary on the Business of Fashion. But, it is also a blog, more generally, on how you can take artistic and creative ideas and channel them in a way that is economically sustainable (and commercially lucrative) over the long term; how you can make the worlds of creativity and commerce co-exisit and feed off of each other harmoniously, without worrying about "selling out." Yes there is always a tension between the creatives and the corporates, but if the right balance is struck, the results can be magical. For example, when John Galliano takes his fantastical ideas from Haute Couture origami and oriental dreams and declines them for his RTW show in a way that is…

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