Fashion's Biggest Fight

By Bernstein, Jacob | Newsweek, August 29, 2011 | Go to article overview
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Fashion's Biggest Fight

Bernstein, Jacob, Newsweek

Byline: Jacob Bernstein

Hollywood executive Harvey Weinstein talks Halston, Madonna, and Julie Taymor.

You invested in the famed fashion house Halston four years ago. This summer the project collapsed, and you, investor Tamara Mellon, stylist Rachel Zoe, designer Marios Schwab, and Sarah Jessica Parker walked away. What went wrong?

My knowledge of fashion could fill a thimble. I always read in those Harvard manuals that you bet on the talent. Tamara chose Marco Zannini, Rachel wanted Giambattista Valli--I couldn't tell the difference. There were forces on the board that alienated Rachel. Once we lost Rachel, the dream team was diminished.

Were you surprised that you couldn't make this work? Your wife, Georgina Chapman, is the successful founder |of Marchesa, after all.

One thing I realized, living with a fashion designer and knowing a lot of her friends, is that when the designer runs the company or the creative director runs the company, that's when it works. Businesspeople should not run the company.

You and Sarah Jessica Parker took a lot of flak. Why did you leave?

Sarah was prepared to go into the office every day. Her division worked spectacularly.

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