Tom Ford's Real Legacy

In the Diana Hotel last week, pink rose petals rained down as the crowd leapt to its feet and Ultra Nate's Free thumped, "You're free to do what you want to do." With a wave and not a single tear, Tom Ford said farewell to fashion — at least for now — and Milan's fall 2004 collections got under way.

For months the front-row crowd has been speculating about Ford's future plans and the impending announcement from the Gucci Group's parent company Pinault-Printemps-Redoute about who will replace him as creative director at Gucci and Yves Saint Laurent. Some...

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