PHILO’S PRIZE: Chloé’s creative director, Phoebe Philo, walked away with the British Designer of the Year Award during the British Fashion Awards 2004 at the Victoria and Albert Museum Tuesday night. “This is so unexpected and exciting and my baby is kicking like mad,” said a very pregnant Philo after accepting her award. “It sounds like such a cliché, but none of this would have been possible without my team.”
Philo beat Burberry designer Christopher Bailey and Roland Mouret for the top award, and joined Vivienne Westwood, Alexander McQueen, John Galliano and Hussein Chalayan in the small club of winners of the prestigious trophy. The ceremony has been relaunched as a fashion industry affair — without all the glitz and B-list celebrity presenters of years past. Giles Deacon picked up the New Designer award, while McQueen walked away with the Men’s Wear Designer award. Mulberry won for best accessory designer and Net-a-Porter.com, the online fashion e-commerce Web site, won for best shop. Photographer David Bailey walked away with the V&A Award for Outstanding Achievement in Fashion. “I don’t think I deserve this at all, so I’d better get out of here before you all change your minds,” he said. The British Fashion Council plans to hold the awards at the V&A for the next three years.
A $300 MILLION “NO”: Apparently, Damon Dash has a guy at Iceberg jeans to thank for his $300 million Rocawear apparel business. At the Roc-A-Fella Records 10th Anniversary Kick-Off Wednesday night at New York University, the hip-hop impresario talked about the seeds of his empire, The Roc, which encompasses ventures in music, apparel, footwear, liquor, film and the media. Dash recalled the first time he knew how influential his company, estimated to be worth about $500 million, had become. In the Nineties, co-founder of The Roc, Kareem “Biggs” Burke, told Dash he found a new brand of jeans that he loved made by Iceberg. “Kareem loved them, so [fellow co-founder] Jay-Z bought a pair. I didn’t want to be left out, so I bought a pair,” Dash said. “Then Jay rhymed about them on one of his tracks and they immediately sold out of the stores. We had just tripled their worth.” Dash said he then called the head of sales for Iceberg and asked him for free jeans, as a thank you. “He told me ‘no,’ so then I said, ‘OK, well then I’m going to put you out of business,’” Dash said. And with that, Rocawear was born.
This story first appeared in the November 5, 2004 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.