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The House of Klein: Fashion, Controversy, and a Business Obsession
Synopses & Reviews
A fashion world insider and journalist reveals the secret world of Calvin Klein
The House of Klein for the first time tells the inside story of the rise of a fashion legend and the mammoth empire he built. Calvin Klein is the worlds most well-known (and successful) fashion designer and has created one of the most recognizable brands in existence, but the tale of his ascendancy to the top of the fashion industry has never been fully told. The House of Klein is the warts-and-all exposé of a boy from the Bronx who made his name synonymous with high fashion by making his brand synonymous with sex. This book offers an informed, insiders account of the defining moments of a fashion legends life, a life circumscribed by personal and professional struggle. Fashion writer Lisa Marsh pulls no punches in presenting the true story of this mammoth of the clothing industry, complete with corporate battles, lawsuits, petty personal vendettas and backroom dealings. Marsh reveals the underbelly of the glittering world of high fashion — a world characterized not so much by beautiful people and wild parties, as it is by money and power, above all else. The House of Klein brings to life this compelling figure through the authors own research and interviews with the man himself, as well as with other figures in the industry — such as Isaac Mizrahi — who finally come clean about the man behind the brand.
Book News Annotation:
A New York fashion industry analyst traces Klein's 35-year influence on the business and pop culture, from the designer jeans trend to provocative ads (as shown in several examples). She also considers the company's future under its new ownership.
Annotation ©2004 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
The House of Klein for the first time tells the inside story of the rise of a fashion legend and the mammoth empire he built. Calvin Klein is the most well known and successful fashion designer in the world, but the tale of his ascendancy to the top of the fashion industry has never been fully told. This is the warts-and-all exposi of a boy from the Bronx who made his name synonymous with high fashion by making his brand synonymous with sex.
"The House of Klein" tells the inside story of the rise of a fashion legend, Calvin Klein, and the mammoth empire he built. This is the warts-and-all tale - rife with controversy, personal struggle, corporate battles, lawsuits - of a boy from the Bronx who made good in the fashion world.
The House of Klein tells the inside story of the rise of a fashion legend and the business empire he built from the ground up. Calvin Klein is perhaps the worlds best-known fashion designer and creator of one of the most recognizable brands in the global marketplace. At the forefront of fashion for more than thirty years, Klein has been no stranger to controversyyet his continued success and profits always seem to answer his critics for him.
In The House of Klein, fashion writer and industry insider Lisa Marsh offers a warts-and-all exposé of the kid from the Bronx who rose from copy boy at Womens Wear Daily to the head of a $3 billion corporation built on the power of sex. First grabbing attention in the 1970s, Klein revolutionized the industry by offering designer jeans at affordable prices. But it was his advertisements, more than his designs, which would land him on the front page.
In the early 1980s, ads featuring teenage beauty Brooke Shields making provocative statements including "Do you know what comes between me and my Calvins? Nothing." brought charges of sexual exploitation of a child, but the resulting maelstrom only garnered more attention for the thriving brand. Klein followed by introducing his Obsession fragrance in 1985 which was accompanied by an ad campaign that featured the naked arms, legs, and torsos of several unidentifiable models.
In the 1990s, Kleins use of the famously thin "it girl" Kate Moss, prompted more criticism. Her gaunt, boyish features and vacant stare hinted at child pornography, sexual ambiguity, anorexia, and even heroin use, but again Klein managed to leverage the brouhaha to further boost his brand recognition.
Attacked from all sidesby conservative pro-family groups and feminist organizations, among many othersKlein continued to question American taste and morality. But his success eventually led to scrutiny of his personal life, and rumors sprung up about his sexuality, as well as alcoholism and his petty personal vendettas. Marsh uncovers the truth and the fiction behind these claims, revealing Klein as a more complicated figure than both his detractors and supporters would have us believe.
Much like the affecting yet disturbing images associated with his brand, Klein is a contradictory figure capable of both warm charm and icy wrath. As a businessman, he is either a calculated genius or a lucky bumbler whose company succeeds despite his meddling. Above all, he is an entrepreneur who knows that sex sells. The House of Klein presents a revealing portrait of the man behind the brandan inscrutable giant of the fashion industry whose influence continues to shape the American cultural landscape.
"The House of Klein" lüftet das Geheimnis der Modebranche und ihrer schillerndsten Figur: Calvin Klein, dem wohl bekanntesten und erfolgreichsten Modedesigner weltweit. Das Buch erzählt eine Geschichte, gespickt mit Kontroversen, persönlichen Schwierigkeiten, Unternehmenskämpfen, Gerichtsprozessen, schockierenden Werbespots, staatlicher Zensur, Verbindungen zur Mafia, wilden Parties und vor allem Kommerz. Mit Interviews früherer Mitarbeiter, Geschäftskollegen und Mode-Insidern, die hier erstmals offen über Klein und die Dinge hinter den Kulissen sprechen. Autorin Lisa Marsh verfügt über ausgezeichnete Kontakte zur Modewelt.
About the Author
Lisa Marsh (New York, NY) focused on the bottom line instead of the hemline while working at the New York Post covering the fashion and retail beat. A veteran of the fashion industry, she began her career in journalism writing financial news stories for the fashion industry bible Womens Wear Daily.
Table of Contents
Chapter 1. From the Bronx.
Chapter 2. Working.
Chapter 3. Early Years and Jeans.
Chapter 4. Booming Boxers and Briefs.
Chapter 5. The Cost of Business.
Chapter 6. Obsession.
Chapter 7. Calvin's Kelly Girl.
Chapter 8. Unraveling.
Chapter 9. What is Calvin Klein?
Chapter 10. Fast, Furious and Forte.
Chapter 11. Controversial cK.
Chapter 12. The Trouble with Linda.
Chapter 13. On the Block.
Chapter 14. The War With Wachner.
Chapter 15. Streamlining for Success.
Chapter 16. Phillips-Van Who?
Chapter 17. Tomorrow.
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