Why? Because then they run to the New York Times to bitch about you.
"This week for the New York premiere of “Sex and the City,” Sarah Jessica Parker wore a strapless Nina Ricci gown designed by Olivier Theyskens. It was one of 40 outfits that Parker planned for the movie’s premieres in London and Berlin, and the press junkets. She looked glamorous and happy in the dress and was asked several times by reporters on the red carpet if it was the sort of dress that Carrie Bradshaw would have worn. New Yorkers have no trouble seeing SJP as Carrie, and given the TV show’s name-dropping familiarity with the fashion world, what she wore to the opening was bound to get attention. It had to be stand-out.
Parker was surprised, then, to learn the morning after the premiere that the silver pleated Ricci dress had already been worn on a red-carpet—by Lauren (Davis) Santo Domingo at the Met ball, on May 5..."
Lauren Santo Domingo and Olivier Theyskens attend the Nina Ricci After Party For Met Ball on May 5, 2008.
"What bothered Parker was that she felt she had been deceived by both Grauso and Theyskens, who met her in the studio and assured her that the dress had never been worn except for magazine shoots.
"In the big picture, this is not important, but there is a relationship between the entertainment industry and fashion," Parker said on Thursday evening, adding. "We’ve watched sales dwindle and we’ve watched people be less inclined to spend money on clothes." To Parker, these are reasons for companies to take particular care with their relationships. "Look, my affection for the dress hasn’t changed," she said, "but what they did was so short-sighted. It’s just unethical and disappointing that they would allow the dress to be worn again."
Parker says she remarked to Theyskens during the fitting that she was surprised the dress hadn’t been worn before. He assured her it hadn’t.
"He didn’t say, ‘Well, actually I just escorted Lauren down the red carpet at the Met.’ " said Parker, adding, "I just wish it had been handled differently and they had been straight about it."
Ouch. Go read the fabulous Cathy Horyn's take on the whole thing.
Look, we get it. In a world where there are a million more important things than this, stuff like who wore what dress when seems pretty silly. On the other hand, there's something of a social and even a business contract involved in setups like these and SJP does have a right to be pissed. This is the movie of her career and Carrie is the role she'll be remembered for into her dotage. The NYC premiere was a BFD and all fashion eyes were on her. Starlets go into these arrangements on the strict understanding that they will be wearing something that hasn't been worn at an event before. It's up to the fashion houses and stylists to make sure of this. People let her down.
We turned to the fabulously glamorous Malan Breton, who has some experience dressing the famous for carpets red or otherwise. This is what he had to say:
"Darlings one thing I have learned is never lie to a client, even if you think it will lead to good publicity. I have dressed many girls and always asked if the piece has been worn before. No one wants to be in the same dress for a major event. Sarah looked so beautiful that night I was there and even in the dark lights of the Carlisle for the after-after party that dress shimmered so beautifully. Sadly she was misled. She is such a nice person, I cannot imagine she could believe anyone to be dishonest to her. Especially on a night that is one of the most important in her life.
One word of advice, always be honest with your clients!!! It will come back to bite you in the ass if you are not."
Yes, Meticulous Malan said "bite you in the ass." We think that demonstrates the gravity of the situation sufficiently.