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"I got Roberto's cigar!" a young woman shouted during Roberto Cavalli's appearance in New York to launch his line for Hennes & Mauritz in November. "It fell down when he stood here. I waited until he walked away, then picked it up and put it in a plastic Ziploc bag. I'm going to sell it on eBay. It's open to all bidders."
View the full coverage of WWD Year in Fashion 2007 at www.wwd.com/yearfashion07
When a designer's cigar butt is as desirable as some of his clothes, you know that strange times have taken hold of the industry. More so than ever, 2007 was the year that all lines blurred between designers and celebrities, with a continued crossover between the two, at all price levels. While some designers like Cavalli and Vera Wang were treated like movie stars at their lower-priced launches, every celebrity worth his or her salt, from Madonna to Victoria Beckham, has taken a stab at designing clothes. If anything, all the activity furthered the notion of the "massification" of fashion, with exclusive designer names available at accessible prices and well-known Hollywood names leaving their mark on department store fixtures.
"It's all happening because there is too much going on in fashion," said David Wolfe, a creative director at the Doneger Group. "The consumer is desperate for some guidance to sort out the crowded retail landscape. Because the media tells us so much about celebrities, people have an idea of what their image means in terms of fashion, and if they can connect a name to an image and merchandise, it makes shopping so much easier."
Here are just some of the big names attached to deals that happened this year:
-Paris Hilton — who later in the year was arrested and jailed in a lengthy soap opera — kicked things off with the news of contemporary sportswear and lingerie lines, slated for a fall retail launch. The sportswear is licensed to BBC Apparel Group Inc., and the lingerie is licensed to SBH Intimates Inc. and includes mesh baby-doll nighties, corsets, panties and bras.