“More Inner Machinations”

Since writing Sunday’s article entitled “Prada, Prada Everywhere” regarding the appearance of the same or very similar versions of a fall/winter 2015 Prada dress on multiple fashion magazine September issues, I had the opportunity to become privy to more details through a noted industry insider with the real scoop on how these things transpire.

Regarding the Prada change of personnel, I had previously read and therefore reported that the person who made the decision to “fling” around the dress in question had been terminated or had fled of their own accord. In fact, the two people who recently left (to join Marc Jacobs) were from the L.A. office which is not responsible for making arrangements to lend out the clothing and therefore may not be connected with this situation.

Another point where confusion can occur is that the International and European editions cover shoots are not communicated to their USA press office counterparts making a greater likelihood that a situation such as this will arise. Additionally, if a cover model such as an actress or musician has a change in schedule, the cover shoot and hence the actual cover may be switched with another month, perhaps at the expense of someone else’s exclusive. Moreover, an exclusive would usually be on a particular dress rather than on an entire collection.

A design house press office often has a list of their favored celebs and can dictate who can and cannot borrow the sample; they may even mandate something like a “no reality stars” policy. This can backfire if, for instance Kim Kardashian is photographed in X designer in Vogue yet a Real Housewife would be denied access and may cry foul. In the current situation, I am told that all of the women who wore the dress were Prada approved so it’s not likely that this was the case. Of course, if the dress is already in stores and available for purchase, anyone may buy it and wear it, or perhaps get a loan through the store or through “studio services” in which case the house has no control over who is photographed in it.

Finally, my source confirms that it really is a “devil wears Prada” (or YSL or Givenchy) type of environment in the rarefied fashion mag world. A newbie editor can go all “Andy” when confronted with a “Miranda Priestly” who wants to know where “the damn dress is” and can’t be assuaged with a substitute dress or assaulted with the word “No.”

– Laurel Marcus

Laurel Marcus

OG journo major who thought Strunk & White's "The Elements of Style" was a fashion guide. Desktop comedienne -- the world of fashion gives me no shortage of material.

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