PRESS: SKIRTING THE ISSUES

LOOT, COZY DEALS AND INFLUENCE PEDDLING UNITE FASHION EDITORS AND THE DESIGNERS THEY COVER. IT IS NOT A PRETTY PICTURE

The tango begins with each fashion season, in the showrooms of Seventh Avenue or SoHo. Magazine editors -- powerful tastemakers with impeccable taste -- survey the racks of samples from the designer's newest line. They make their choices -- the Calvin Kleins for the summer spread; the Gianni Versaces for the feature on The New Glamour. Then a jacket catches the editor's eye. She pulls it from the racks, fingers the rich fabric, tries it on, feels that familiar adrenaline rush.

"This is fabulous," she says. "If you like, we'll send it to you," responds the designer.

"I advise the...

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