Kira Plastinina, the teenage Russian designer who entered the U.S. retail market with a bang last year and flamed out seven months later, reopened two Los Angeles stores last month under the name K. Plastinina.
This story first appeared in the July 9, 2009 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
Plastinina’s Los Angeles-based K.P. Clothing Co. liquidated under Chapter 7 bankruptcy, and she is now doing business through her new company, Pink Square, which is based in Russia. Plastinina has reoccupied two of the chain’s locations on Robertson Boulevard and in the Beverly Center mall.
Employees from one of the former company’s creditors — the bankrupt firm owed a total of $54.4 million, according to court papers — picketed the Robertson Boulevard store on Friday.
The picketers were from Tom Rectenwald Construction, which built eight of the original Kira Plastinina stores, including those in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut and outside Washington, D.C.
Co-owner Aaron Rectenwald said he organized the protests because Plastinina owes his firm $2.5 million.
“The point of all this is that there are still people suffering because of what [the company] did,” Rectenwald said. “We haven’t gotten the attention of management yet so we’ll be coming back until we do.”
Creditors listed in the bankruptcy filing included the Santa Monica, Calif. Police Department; Verizon; AT&T, and public relations firm Harrison & Shriftman.
A representative of Pink Square could not be reached for comment.
The teen designer’s business was bankrolled by her father, Sergei Plastinin, a juice and dairy magnate who was said to have spent $80 million on the U.S. expansion. Plastinina still operates about 70 stores in Russia and Ukraine.