Do you need to be a bitch in the Fashion Industry to succeed?

Tags: — Nicky Harris, April 2, 2010

Kelly Cutrone, owner of Fashion Pr Company in NY Peoples Revolution has recently published a book ‘If you have to cry go outside: and other things your mother didn’t tell you‘ Available from Amazon and heading up on the NY Times best sellers list it’s a book on my ‘interested to read’ list. The reviews have all been positive but then in this business you don’t always get an unbiased view. It’s often a matter of ‘I’ll scratch your back if you’ll scratch mine’. Kelly Cutrone is extremely successful at what she does. She has a no nonsense approach and is known for her often brutal straight talking. On her client list at the moment among others are Longchamp, Vivienne Westwood and Sass and Bide.

It’s a good idea to teach young women that the Fashion world is no bed of roses. That it is often tough and often not at all glamorous. That the nearer to the top you get the more cynical you can become. As someone who has been reduced to tears by( so called) successful people (and yes, I did go out and cry on my own) I question whether the model that says you have to be rude beyond belief in order to succeed is either valid or desirable. I want my daughters to have inner strength, to succeed in the world whether it be fashion or whatever they choose. But above all I hope I’ve taught them one lesson and that is to treat people with respect.

I will buy Ms Cutrones book and I will read it with an open mind. If her message is one that empowers women who wish to succeed in the Business of Fashion to be strong yet fair, to work hard with 100% commitment then I’m all for that. But if the message is that I need to be a bitch to succeed then sorry folks, count me out.

Here is an Interview with Kelly Cutrone about her book

Do you need to be a bitch to succeed in the Fashion Business

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  11. you need to be strong and assertive but the bitch part is optional

    Comment by M — April 9, 2010 @ 6:30 pm

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  17. I don’t think she is bitchy. I think (not having read her book yet, but having watched her on TV) that the point is to be tough and confident, not mean for mean’s sake.

    Comment by Janine — April 12, 2010 @ 4:03 am

  18. Really you should read the book and then decide. No, in no no no way is Kelly Cutrone bitchy. More of a den mother to glamazons, little girls unprepared for a push to the front row and it is hardly unkind to say what needs to be said. It’s rather like tarring a boss who asks for the words to be spelled correctly, punctuation used and grammar oh sweet grammar. Not kind, not unkind; professional.

    Bitches are so 1980’s … and no, they don’t get far these days. Unfair is evil, pure evil; manipulators evil.

    There is another way and as I look at the fashion industry, I see people battered by the economy and struggling to pay their people and yes they’d better become professional.

    And nice.

    Comment by Madeleine Gallay — April 12, 2010 @ 8:13 am

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  24. Bitch or not, this is a small industry. Everyone knows everyone so your reputation will proceed you. I prefer to take the high road, and in the end my reputation will remain intact.

    Warm Regards,
    Danny Naz
    Creativo Surface Design

    By Phone: (631) 343-2366
    By e-mail: info at thinkcreativo.com
    By mail: 3100 Veterans Highway, Suite C • Bohemia NY 11706

    Comment by Danny Naz — April 16, 2010 @ 7:29 pm

  25. I wasn’t making a decision on Kelly Cutrone or on the book. I was just posing a question. I agree that sometimes tough words need to be said but they can be said in a way that is not personally hurtful. I am a tyrant in work myself and demand very high standards. Here in Ireland we have highly educated girls who are not generally not spoilt. This is an economy that is struggling to survive and the fashion business is hit very hard. There is no room for slackers here! So it seems we are in agreement!

    Comment by Nicky Harris — April 18, 2010 @ 1:40 pm

  26. Wow, its really nice to know that people are writing books about the truth of the industry. Young girls with dreams of all that glitters need to be told about the other side of the industry too before they set their hearts on it!

    Comment by Rachel — May 8, 2010 @ 2:11 pm

  27. Great article. Maybe not necessarily a “bitch,” but confidence is always key!

    Comment by Obagi — December 23, 2010 @ 6:14 am

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