Toby Leigh, an artist and a photographer new book hilariously documents a decade of the world’s obsession with a British heritage brand, Burberry– and all the cheap knock-offs that come with it. The book is aptly titled ‘Berberry’ and Leigh states, “I’ve always had a fascination with fake products. Especially things that are so unashamedly fake that they become really funny but also quite beautiful. About ten years ago, I started seeing the pattern appearing everywhere as I walked around London and travelled across the world and would find myself laughing a lot.”
The Burberry Check, once masterminded by the British heritage brand as a sign of luxury, the beige, red, black and white tartan has today become notorious as one of the most copied and counterfeited in the world. The tartan was, and can still be, seen everywhere from scarves to iPhone cases, shopping trolleys, kitchen goods and even painted on buildings. Though Burberry managed to reclaim the tartan in 2006 through a series of intelligent advertising and brand moves – including input from Mario Testino – the proliferation of products out there is still mind-boggling, albeit ludicrously creative.
In the book Berberry – produced by Ditto Press – Leigh attempts to pinpoint the global fascination with the pattern that is amazingly simple but has become so ubiquitous. We live in a world where we yearn for things to feel like they have some kind of heritage and the ‘Berberry’ plaid seems to tap into that on some level, It also represents a ‘Britishness’, which resonates across the world and especially in factories in China knocking out cheap goods.
My personal favorite is the Calvin Klein underpants with the Berberry pattern. It seem to capture our ridiculous obsession with anything ‘designer.
Why do mega fashion houses employ expensive creative directors when all they do is dig into the archives of maestros of fashion and simply ape the designs? Partnouveau made this exciting revelation where Valentino’s Pier Paolo Piccioli and Maria Grazia Chiuri imitated the concepts of lightness and buoyancy for Valentino 2011 Spring Couture from Paul Poiret’s 1913 costumes for Le Minaret.
Poiret’s avant-garde interpretation of harem-style dressing for the Parisian set resulted in a stiffened, oversized tunic paired over his columnar hobble skirts. This dual-hemmed silhouette became Paul Poiret’s signature “lampshade” design.
Almost after a century Valentino copied Poiret’s ‘lampshade’ dressing and thought they will get away with it.
Plagiarism may be the oldest form of flattery but it’s definitely not a pleasant one. High-Street labels copying styles and designs from the top-end designer labels has become virtually acceptable but what do you say to Valentino copying from Elsa Schiaparelli? Designers Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pierpaolo Piccioli of Valentino transformed textile to music sheet for the brand’s Spring 2014 Couture show. Schiaparelli’s Fall 1939 music-themed collection celebrated music, quite literally, with drum-shaped button closures, embroidered musical notes and music boxes designed into belts and hats. This particular dress, owned by heiress Millicent Rogers and housed at the Costume Institute at the Met, features musical notes and symbols embroidered in metallic thread on organza, paired with a belt designed with a working music box as the buckle.
Plagiarism is there in advertisement too. The advertisement for Tom Ford’s Black Orchid fragrance campaign featuring Cara Delevingne is a ditto copy of photographer duo – Mert & Marcus’ editorial for Love Magazine’s spring/summer 2013 issue that co-incidentally featured Cara Delevingle.
This expose’ has been made by Partnouveau, a website that digs out blatant plagiarism acts in the world of fashion. The site is very strong in research and regularly exposes the ugly side of the glossy fashion world.
Mumbai Mirror has been shamelessly stealing stories from this site and doesn’t even have the basic courtesy of seeking permission or giving due credit to 220.127.116.11/~fashions/. This is not the first time a TOI Group Publication has done it. There have been multiple stories stolen before.
Thanks to highheelconfidential we discovered the blatant plagiarism by Mumbai based designer Surily Goel. Even a blind man can say that the honeycomb neckline dress that Surily Goel showcased as her Fall/Winter 2013 collection at WIFW was a shameless imitation of Gucci’s spring/summer 2013 style. The images bare it all.
In fact Surily has a penchant for copying Gucci. I discovered yet another copying act from Gucci’s 2009 collection.