September 15, 2007 London
From the runway pieces, it's quite possible to see how his dark-side coats, with their giant fringe-bristling shoulders, might find certain takers in the rock industry. As one-offs, they could fill the stage of any stadium. A stole made of white mink mice, complete with red eyes and tails? It could work for an encore. Or as window-dressing, come Halloween, perhaps. Real world, though? Hard to imagine many female customers for his ribbon-leather body dresses, no matter how much slaving it takes to sew them. Perhaps the conundrum will be solved when buyers travel to Paris to see Pugh's collection up close under Rick Owens' roof. Owens' wife, Michele Lamy, who has a stellar reputation as a manager, is overseeing Pugh's production. Maybe there are moderated designs in the works. There need to be, unless Pugh is quite happy to continue, hand-to-mouth, relying on the indulgence of sponsors, and the diminishing returns as newer designers come up.