A TALE OF TWO CLOSETS: Fashion-Gate just won’t go away for vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin. Now it turns out the candidate might have unwittingly prompted legal troubles for her favorite hometown consignment shop when she name-dropped it on national television last week. In a Fox News interview on Friday, the vice presidential nominee attempted to distance herself from reports that the Republican National Committee had spent $150,000 on her campaign clothes by touting her family’s thrifty ways. Palin told Sean Hannity that she is a frequent customer of Out of the Closet, an Anchorage clothing reseller. Unfortunately for the Alaskan shop, Los Angeles-based AIDS Healthcare Foundation has operated charity resale stores under the same name in California and Florida since 1990. It registered the moniker as a trademark in 1997. In a teleconference Monday, the group, which describes itself as the nation’s largest HIV and AIDS nonprofit, said it sent a cease and desist letter to the Anchorage store. It also threatened a trademark suit if it wasn’t appeased, and invited Palin to donate her campaign wardrobe to its own Out of the Closet operations after the election. The Out of the Closet shop to the north did not return a call seeking comment. — Matthew Lynch
This story first appeared in the October 28, 2008 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
A STEADY SLIDE: Newspaper circulation continues to decline, down 4.6 percent for editions published Monday though Friday and also falling 4.9 percent for Sunday editions published during the six-month period ending Sept. 30, according to the Audit Bureau of Circulations. During the same time frame in 2007, circulation was down 2.6 percent for dailies and 3.5 percent for Sunday editions. The new report from ABC reports that The New York Times’ weekday circulation fell 3.6 percent, while the New York Post dropped 6.3 percent. USA Today and the Wall Street Journal’s circulation remained virtually unchanged during the period, and the Washington Post had a slight decrease of 1.9 percent. The Washington Post Co. also suffered an outlook change from “stable” to “negative” from Standard & Poor’s and Moody’s Investor Services. The Los Angeles Times, which said Monday it would lay off 75 more people, was down 5.2 percent. — Amy Wicks
MAGAZINES GO LIVE: As the consumer magazine market becomes increasingly squeezed, British titles are devising ever more inventive ways to draw attention to their brands. British GQ, whose December issue marks the title’s 20th anniversary, will take over the shop windows on London’s Savile Row this week to celebrate the occasion. Most of the stores on the storied street will mount window displays to mark the magazine’s birthday, using covers from the title’s archive. Tailor Mark Marengo will project images from GQ’s archive onto a white suit in its window, while Richard James and Ozwald Boateng will put large-scale displays in their stores, a spokeswoman for Condé Nast in London said. Images of the windows will be displayed on gq.com from Thursday, when the magazine — at 582 pages, the largest any of GQ’s global editions has produced — hits newsstands. In addition, the title has tied in with men’s wear label Hackett for its anniversary, to produce a collection of wallets, passport covers, wash bags and ties, which feature a print made from images of GQ’s vintage covers. The collection will be sold at Hackett’s Sloane Street store starting Thursday.
And in another interactive move, next week, the British edition of Grazia magazine will temporarily transplant its entire staff of 46 to a Perspex box placed in London’s Westfield mall, a much-anticipated $2.4 billion shopping center that opens Thursday. The staff will work on the Bauer Media-owned magazine in the new location from Nov. 3 to 7, during which time shoppers will be able to peer at the editorial team as it put together the Nov. 11 issue. Grazia said the event is part of “an ongoing relationship between Grazia and Westfield London, as the brands share a similar vision.” — Louise Bartlett
MARTHA EXPORTS: Martha Stewart Living, which is only published in the U.S. and Poland, is expanding to Turkey and Israel. Beginning in January, the magazine will publish 12 times a year in Israel, and there are also plans to take Everyday Food to Mexico, with the first issue to be published early next year. — A.W.
S-TAR-TING: Evanly Schindler, founder of BlackBook magazine, has started a new company, tar Art Collective, as well as a new biannual publication, tar mag. The magazine is a mix of art and aesthetics with an emphasis on social awareness. As creative director and editor in chief of the magazine, Schindler called upon contributors including Arianna Huffington, Interview editor in chief Christopher Bollen, Jonathan Lethem, Neil LaBute, Ryan McGinley, Juergen Teller and Julian Schnabel, who shot Benicio Del Toro for the cover.
“I think it’s a pretty good start,” said Schindler, who noted that 90,000 copies will be distributed in the U.S. and abroad. “We’ve taken a very artful approach to fashion.” As for advertisers, they include Barneys New York, Prada Eyewear, Giorgio Armani, Diane von Furstenberg, Dolce & Gabbana, Nina Ricci, David Yurman and Carolina Herrera. “Considering the economy, we got good rates and everybody has paid, which, you know, doesn’t always happen,” said Schindler.
In addition to placing two ad spreads in the first edition, Barneys creative director Simon Doonan is devoting window space on Madison Avenue to the new magazine. “We have strong ties to the art world,” said Doonan. “I saw the first issue and it is fantastic — it’s a great synergy for us. We have tons of art world glitterati shopping at Barneys.” — A.W.
DINNER WITH MOURET: ES, the London Evening Standard’s weekly magazine, hosted an intimate dinner at the Connaught’s new Espelette restaurant in London last week in honor of Roland Mouret. The crowd was a mix of retailers, writers, and plain old Mouret fans including Jemima Khan, Sheherazade Goldsmith, Samantha Cameron, Toby Rowland, Alannah Weston, Alain and Charlotte de Botton, Camilla Al-Fayed, Joan Burstein, Jonathan Saunders, Santa Montefiore and Simon Sebag Montefiore.
Two guests, however, defiantly chose not to wear Mouret for the evening. “I keep telling Roland to make dresses with sleeves!” said Burstein with a sly smile over a plate of roast chicken and macaroni and cheese. Khan, wearing Nathan Jenden, said. “I’m sure he’s sick of seeing me in his dresses, so I opted for something different.” — Samantha Conti