24 August 2007

They still need our money

From NPR, I now learn (thanks, Jürgu) that Kohl's is bringing Vera Wang to the masses:

When you hear Vera Wang, you are probably a lot more likely to think of Victoria Beckham's $100,000 wedding gown than a $50 shirt at the retailer Kohl's. But that's about to change. The high-end fashion designer is launching a low-end line of clothing for Kohl's early next month. She's following in the footsteps of dozens of other luxury makers.

Just don't let them get away with thinking this is "trickle-down economics" - the supposedly de facto dissemination of wealth touted by 1980s Thatcherism and Reaganomics. This latest commercial venture is little more than a condescending illusion of sharing whereby absolute affluence is again refashioned as an acceptable, aspirational marketing brand and is, thereby, further legitimated. It's really just "low-end" clothing for the lowly low-lifes. I suppose, if nothing else, it reminds us that the riff-raff still have some collective spending power - we just need to learn how to use it better. Oh, and how about Wang-K or simply WangK as a name for Kohl's new Wang line?

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