Tuesday, August 13, 2013

SpotlightOn - #GetScattered

Do you remember the first time you stepped into Bergdorf Goodman? If, like me, you stood in awe of your surroundings and its majesty, it might be time to kick your admiration of Bergdorf's up a notch. The documentary Scatter my Ashes at Bergdorf's is probably the most fascinating behind the scenes fashion film since The September Issue. Not only do we learn it's beginnings but, more interestingly, we learn its historical influence in the fashion industry.

"I want my ashes scattered over Bergdorf's." Cartoon by
Victoria Roberts, published April 30, 1990, The New Yorker
  (image via CondenastStore)

Notably, Michael Kors was discovered as a designer by Dawn Mello, then BG Fashion Director, whilst he arranged some of his work in windows across the street from BG in 1980. About 20 years later Michael Kors took his company public, with a market capitalization of about $3.8 billion, and cashed in. Kors current ownership of 2.5% of the company is valued at $300 million, not bad for a fashion school dropout.
On a commercial level, we are exposed to the acquisition process with new designer Ally Hilfiger from NAHM, presenting to BG buyers, receiving feedback and being turned down. Going a step further within the brand portfolio makeup process; we hear from established young designers such as Jack McCollough & Lazaro Hernandez from Proenza Schouler and Johnson Hartig from Libertine on the competitive exclusivity demanded by luxury department stores, meaning Barneys and BG do not like to share! Ultimately, the person with the final say as to what does make it in store is Linda Fargo, Vice President of Visual Merchandising at BG, and she is defined as a bar-setter, akin to Anna Wintour, but, in my opinion, stronger, since she decides what you can buy.

The above is presented within the first 20 minutes! If this doesn't satiate your thirst for more then the film is for you. If you are mind-blown by the richness and density described here, then you must make it a point to watch Scatter my Ashes at Bergdorf's.

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