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Liz Claiborne--Mistress of the Un-Dead

Andy Warhol famous line, that everyone would be famous for fifteen minutes has entered the common lexicon of cliches and I'd like to kill him for it. In the first place, it's because, it seemed at the time, he was being kind of snotty--implying that most people (besides him) were too silly to tell the difference between 15 minutes of fame and a career of being famous. But then, we also have Liz Claiborne, who's been famous for a lot longer than that and doesn't look like she's ever going to go away. Even though she's been dead for god-knows how many years.

 I don't hold anything against her success personally--the first Fortune 500 company founded by a woman and all the other feminist landmark accolades. And it is nice I suppose that there was a designer out there who designed for the feminine figure--small waste, bigger hips and butts, than for the 12-year-old boy, model's size 0 body, although her clothes don't fit me personally, with my non-existent waist, tiny butt and long legs, but never mind that, either.

There just doesn't seem to be an apparel brand out there that hasn't been bought or sold by Liz Claiborne. It's one great, brain-eating mediocre fashion maw. And bringing Isaac Mizrahi onboard is just one more, big, ol' fat case-in-point.

Isaac Mizrahi seems like he's a girl's best gay friend, tasteless groping and all--his clothes have that retro-girly-classic-with-a-twist-vibe that makes you go "oooooh!" But put it on and go "meh." Who are these designed for? He doesn't seem to understand the human form, let alone the female form. The materials are good, the prints and colors are eye-catching, but something's...wrong. The cut is hurried, the drape is weird, the tailoring and finishing is schlocky--like it was done by a pissed off Malaysian woman with a personal grudge against piping. And no matter what your "season" is, you'll always look like nuclear winter in his colors.
And what will happen to Liz Claiborne's clothes for the curvy with Mizrahi at the design helm?

And personally, it's all tripping me up in the second hand stores. I'm going along, going along the aisles, judging color, fabric, finishes...I see that cute piping or seersucker and I stop. Oh! Liz Claiborne, Claiborne Sport, Emma James, Juicy Couture, Axcess, Mex, even Kate Spade???? (How could you, Kate???)I can't re-sell Liz Claiborne--so when I am fooled by YET another cheeky, houndstooth check skirt at the Goodwill, I wonder when she will die, die, die! But apparently, she keeps coming back--wearing seersucker golf skirts and windowpane plaid dresses that just make you look dead.


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