Retailers and editors attending Paris Fashion Week largely shrugged off Sunday’s alert from the State Department urging Americans traveling to Europe to be vigilant about possible terrorist attacks.
Neiman Marcus’ Karen Katz said she planned to tell its team in Paris “to be on special alert and to be cautious and watchful.” She said measures could include taking taxis instead of public transport. Neiman’s has about 35 people in Paris. Pete Nordstrom, president of merchandising at Nordstrom Inc., said it’s “business as usual. We always encourage people to use caution and good judgement.”
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Ron Frasch, president and chief merchandising officer of Saks Inc., which has about 45 people on the ground in Europe, said all employees have been told that if they’re at all uncomfortable being in Europe they can go home or cancel trips if they were scheduled to arrive in Europe.
“Our plans are remaining the same as of now,” said Vogue editor in chief Anna Wintour. “We’ve talked about it, sure,” said Robbie Myers, editor in chief, Elle U.S. “You know, when you have this many people this close together all the time, things get a little hysterical. That’s the thing about terrorism. It’s terrifying. It sounds like a cliché. There’s not a person I’ve talked to for whom it hasn’t stirred those feelings right after 9/11, you know, sort of watchful, and trying to rationalize your behavior.”
“We’ll try not to panic and do our jobs,” said Glamour editor in chief Cindi Leive, who said the magazine would not change its plans for coverage of Paris Fashion Week. She noted, however, she would advise “a couple of editors who are taking public transportation to probably ease up on that.”
“I think should any member of our team who wants to go home, I’d be happy for them to do so. We have a job to do and we’re getting on with it,” said Glenda Bailey, Harper’s Bazaar editor in chief.
“I was in New York during Sept. 11 and flew back to London as scheduled, so changing my travel plans at the end of this fashion week hadn’t occurred to me. I don’t think camping out in France due to fear is the answer to anything,” said Vanessa Friedman, the Financial Times’ fashion editor.