Adventures in Copyright: One & the Same

I was walking through Saks yesterday, overwhelmed by the perfection of Helmut Lang's pre-fall collection, when I saw the BCBG skirt at left. It was ho
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I was walking through Saks yesterday, overwhelmed by the perfection of Helmut Lang's pre-fall collection, when I saw the BCBG skirt at left. It was hot pink in the store, so it jumped out against the greys and blacks, and perfectly banded. The piece was tiny and stretchy with a zipper up the back just like Herve Leger's signature bandage skirts. At this point, you can find Herve rip-offs everywhere, but it made us wonder what Mr. Azria, the man behind both Herve and BCBG, stands to gain from ripping himself off - like when Topshop ripped off Kate Moss for Topshop's dress.

There's no way anyone can tell the difference between the $130 BCBG and the $600 Herve version. In fact, when Ashley Olsen wore a Topshop version which probably cost around $50, everyone thought it was Herve. And it's not like the girl shopping the Herve department isn't shopping the Marc by Marc/Elizabeth & James/BCBG department. So who's left to buy the skirt? Is this some brilliant business plan we just don't understand? We're stumped.