By Harlan Yaffe,
Fashion Editor,Todo Ahora
January 27, 2003

"Fashion Insider," just the phrase conjures up a notion of a dressed in black, Concorde-hopping style-maker peering up at the models on the catwalk through mysterious dark designer sunglasses.  That description really applies to just one kind of fashion insider, those from the editorial and retail worlds. The other kind of fashion insider does not cover the industry or sell clothing, but actually works in the manufacturing and design end of the business.  Most of their long and stressful days are spent developing the styles that the fashion journalists spend their long and stressful days reporting about and fashion retailers will be trying to sell.

After fifteen years on NY's Seventh Avenue as a fashion designer, I belong to the latter group. This week I wanted to answer some of the questions most asked of me whenever my profession is brought up in conversation.  Aside from seasonal advice: "black or gray," "fit or flared" or "long or short," I discovered people really struggle to grasp why the fashion industry seems so at odds with the reality of the needs of those very people they devote their lives to clothing. Grab the broom and dustpan, girlfriends, cause I am gonna spill the dirt!


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