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Lacroix: Broke But Fabulous

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The financial woes of Christian Lacroix and his namesake collections are the subject of an article in the new Fall Fashion Issue of New York magazine. The good news: Lacroix's spirit and passion for creativity and the art of couture are intact. "Without couture," he says, "no life is possible." Who could disagree with that? The bad news: The future of the house is still uncertain as current owners—the unfortunately named Falic Group—push for "a 90 percent reduction in staff," "making the label into a licensing house," and essentially stripping Lacroix of his name (a move which allows the designer to ruefully joke while nibbling on macaroons: "I will be like Prince! The designer formerly known as!")

The article isn't totally bleak, despite the precarious state of the company and the outpouring of support from suppliers, colleagues and employees that Lacroix likens to "being at my own funeral!" The picture Amy Larocca paints of the most recent couture presentation in July is triumphant. Let's not forget the picture she paints of Danielle Steele, either. The woman showed up wearing white Balmain "with shoulder pads the size of tennis balls" and described the uncertain fate of the house as "very worrying."

If nothing else, the piece offers a proper definition of the term "couture" for those people who think it should apply to that dress they bought for that wedding from the Lord & Taylor. Larocca also explains that the market for these handmade, outrageously expensive pieces is minuscule and absolutely requires successful diffusion lines, fragrances and licenses to survive. As such, Karl Lagerfeld can famously proclaim: "When you've got $3 billion to lose, you are still rich." —Frank Gargione
· Vive Lacroix [New York]
· No More Couture [Racked]
· Bankruptcy [Racked]

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