Fashion Wrap: Royal Ascot Gets Fashion Police & Hermes Caught In Counterfeit Ring
19th OF June 2012
The race-goers at Royal Ascot this week in England have had a fashion clampdown - and now there will be fashion police on the prowl...
Royal Ascot Horse Race Has Fashion Police
Ever felt vaguely miffed that going to the races in Sydney or Melbourne requires a fascinator?
Feel pity for the race-goers at Royal Ascot in England this week, who are going to experience their first 'fashion police'.
Ascot is the fanciest of fancy horse races - the Queen herself visits, as does most of the British Royal family at some point - and apparently there's been indignation that standards are slipping.
The solution? Every customer has been given a dress code booklet - and men and women stationed at the ticket barriers to enforce it.
Shoulders and midriffs have to be covered - no strapless dresses allowed - ties are compulsory and headgear must be worn by everybody.
If you've been invited to the very exclusive Royal Enclosure, god forbid you wear a fascinator rather than a hat. You have to hire one from the barrier-keepers, for about 100 Australian dollars.
The enforcers aren't just going to be turning away the improper - they'll also be armed with all manner of items to help clueless racegoers look a little better put-together. The British press is gleefully reporting that there's a big supply of pashminas, bow ties and 'cheap' fascinators in all colours and sizes, to better match the hapless rule-breaker's outfit.
However, there's good news - all these bits and pieces are being handed out free for emergencies. The Ascot race course says they 'aren't very good quality' - so there may be ladies in exquisite designer gowns with a three-dollar bunch of feathers on their heads.
British model Jean Shrimpton made a massive splash in Australia in the 60s when she went to the Melbourne Cup in a simple shift dress with no stockings or hat. Ascot will be less lenient...
Image: An 'appropriate' outfit for the Royal Enclosure, from the Ascot dress code booklet.
Hermes Caught In Counterfeit Sting
There's a public conception that faking designer bags is a practise that only happens in dodgy Chinese factories.
However, Hermes is proving, unfortunately, that it can sometimes go much higher up.
A French counterfeiting sting has found that several employees of the luxury company have actually been producing fakes on their own.
Counterfeiting is the massive bogeyman of the luxury industry, costing it billions every year - RESCU has brought you news of many lawsuits against minor companies and suspected fakers - but this is one of the first cases where the funny business happened in the luxury brand itself.
Hermes has dismissed two employees already and more are due to come - but the French police say it's due to the company's own insights and a few tip-offs from other workers that the clever counterfeiters were captured at all.
Hermes produces the infamous Kelly and Birkin bags, which are so lusted after that the waiting list can take years. It's been known for people to come to the top of the waiting list having been dead for several months. And while Jane Birkin herself isn't too impressed by her namesake bag, the pricetag induces many people to try and cheat customers into buying lesser products.
The Hermes employees had access to actual Hermes leather and branding, and the French police uncovered an entire workshop. Its fake goods alone probably reaped the criminals about 18 million euro.
So if you're planning to invest in an It Bag, do your research very carefully indeed - up to 80% of 'Hermes' bags for sale today are fakes. Only buy directly from the Australian Hermes store at australia.hermes.com.
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