Apparently Topshop, Chanel, Louis Vuitton, and Forever 21 aren’t doing too badly in the recession, even as their peers are experiencing millions of dollars in losses. A WWD survey of a 100 luxury industry experts came up with those four brands as the most likely to succeed in this economy and, as you can see, there’s quite a disparity in price points. We understand why Topshop and Forever 21 will do well—they’re on trend, fun and dirt cheap—but Chanel and Louis Vuitton need a little further explanation. Why Chanel and LV, not Prada and Dior? What is it about these particular $3,000 bags that makes them relatively recession-proof?
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Plus-size fashionistas are going to have a harder time finding clothing that fits because plus-size clothing companies are being hit as hard by the recession as high-end designers and department stores. Many stores have decreased the amount of plus-size clothing they carry or have eliminated the department altogether. Plus-size clothing costs 10 percent more to manufacture, and the demand for it isn’t as high as smaller-sized garments. Sad. At least they can still shop at Faith 21 and Pure Energy. [Fashion Indie] Keep reading »
If your bedroom buddy has been sporting the same skivvies over and over, it may be a sign that the recession is still in full throttle. According to economist Alan Greenspan, the former Federal Reserve chief, underwear sales are a great indicator of the economy’s status. Over the course of 2008, male underwear sales declined by 12%; as we all know, GDP took a sharp drop as well. So just in case you didn’t already have enough on your mind during the brutal economic meltdown, you now have to worry about (and be wary of) your dude’s holey undies, too. Here’s hoping the economy—and our boyfriends’ boxer collection—are on the rise. Keep reading »
Further confirmation that sex-related industries continue to do well during a recession: Sales of personal lubricants increased 32 percent this quarter, up to $41.2 million. “When the economy goes down, sex goes up,” according to a spokesman for Johnson & Johnson, the company behind K-Y Yours & Mine his-and-hers lubricants. The “sexual-enhancement” product category is growing even faster, with sales up 74 percent this quarter. So, it seems the recession is good for something, namely taking away everyone’s money so they can’t afford to see a movie in the theater, but they have enough to pick up a few ounces of lube. But while you’re at the store, don’t forget a pack of condoms. An increase in unemployment rates increases fertility, according to the National Bureau of Economic Research, and we see a mini-baby boom as a result. [Ad Age] Keep reading »
There’s a follow-up to a story we told you about the other day. Alina Percea, the 18-year-old who auctioned her virginity to a wealthy Italian businessman for $13,600, may have to give 50% of her earnings to the government who say her act was “tantamount to prostitution.” The Romanian-born teenager lives in Germany where prostitution is legal, but heavily taxed. “It is not a moral standpoint but a fiscal one,” an official said. “Prostitution is not an illegal act in Germany, but not paying tax on earned money is. Consequently we are assessing her case and it looks likely she will have to pay around half of the sum she gained.” Alina may also get stuck with a big VAT bill (value added tax), which would work out to another 19% tax, leaving her with only $4,700 for the sale of her virginity (she’d hoped to make at least $75,000 to help pay for school). So, let this be a lesson to you virgins out there: skip the auction block and just give it up the old-fashioned way — slightly drunk and to some guy you feel so-so about! [via DailyMail] Keep reading »
In case your first sexual experience wasn’t awkward enough, Alina Percea, the 18-year-old who auctioned her virginity on a German website to help pay for college, is dishing all the details of her experience. Proving he’s a real romantic, the 45-year-old Italian businessman whose $13,600 bid won the auction paid to fly Alina to Venice — after she underwent to medical exams to prove her virginity. In Venice, the two toured the city before retiring to a luxury hotel for the main event. “‘We kissed, then undressed each other,’ Alina says. ‘I’d never done that before, so I was nervous. He laid me on the bed and started kissing my body, then we had sex. I was attracted to him, so I enjoyed it, even though it was quite painful.’” The next morning Alina, who, as part of the auction, didn’t use protection, enjoyed breakfast with the winning bidder “like any other couple” and took a morning-after pill. The romance doesn’t stop there, guys! “He told me he’d like to see me again, and I agreed.” Although the money raised fell short of the $75,000 she hoped to earn, she says, “I hope to see the man again. And next time I won’t make him pay!” Awww. [via DailyMail] Keep reading »