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27 de Agosto, 2012 · General

Christian Louboutin shoes at the Los Angeles/Long Beach seaport

If you find a pair of those trendy red-bottom heels for a deal that sounds too good to be true, it probably is.U.S. Customs and Border Protection confiscated 20,457 pairs of counterfeit Christian Louboutin shoes at the Los Angeles/Long Beach seaport.“They label the shipments as generic shoes when, in fact, they’re bringing over contraband,” said Jaime Ruiz, a public affairs specialist for the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.According to the CBP, the knock-off shoes that were transported in five different shipments on a cargo ship in large boxes from China had a domestic value of more than $57,000, meaning it cost just less than $3 per pair to make them.Officials said there were enough of those red soles to add up to a suggested retail value of $18 million, an unbelievable profit.“The original [Christian Louboutin Sale] shoe is made in Italy,” said chief CBP officer Guillermina Escobar. “Once we saw it was coming in from China, we knew there was a problem with the shipment.”Officials took pictures of the shoes and consulted with the trademark holder to authenticate the shoe. Once they learned they were counterfeit, the hot commodities were taken off the black market and placed into the border patrol’s possession.Had the shoes slipped through the cracks, Escobar said, they would likely have been sold on illegitimate websites and underground outlets, some of which may fail to mention the shoes are counterfeits.

Lately, he has been mired in a lawsuit over his signature look: Louboutin is suing the Yves Saint Laurent company, which is owned by PPR Group, for copyright infringement for producing red soles. Of the ongoing case, he says, "It's my trademark. For two months I said, 'Fix it,' " and nothing happened. Then they tried to kill me by saying I can't own a color. But they own colors for their makeup and the red-and-green stripe for Gucci. It's very much a double standard." (Representatives from YSL declined to comment.)
“There are few plants that are ugly. It's how you use them that may not be pretty.”
Louboutin's design ideas often come in sudden bursts and, as with his interiors, they come from everywhere: sari ribbons picked up in India; macramé sandals inspired by African handicrafts; motifs sparked by Egyptian Coptic crosses, the architecture of Oscar Niemeyer or details in Lucio Fontana's paintings. The inspiration for his famous toe cleavage—or décolleté—shoes came to him when he saw an old photo of Princess Diana dancing with John Travolta at the White House. "She was wearing these really bad English shoes and they showed half her toes," he told British Vogue. "It looked tacky, but so good somehow. She had that naughtiness and it was appearing subconsciously."
A constant source of ideas is his garden in the French countryside. He learned about botany during the roaming years of his youth, when he worked as a self-taught freelance landscaper. "The garden allowed me to see colors, blends of colors and materials, juxtapositions of gloss and matte surfaces—it was highly instructive," he says in Christian Louboutin Replica, a book celebrating his 20th anniversary, published by Rizzoli. "Still today, if I close my eyes I don't see satin combined with velvet; I see the thickness of a pansy, which is deep purple bordered with white, set against the texture of another plant, and this combination gives me my colors."Even the shoe archive was unplanned; the idea for it came serendipitously when a business acquaintance "who loves fashion" came to his office on the Right Bank and asked to see his inventory. The designer escorted the man to the basement to have a look. "The first box I opened was a Chinese brocade shoe trimmed with mink," Louboutin recalls. "And the shoe was completely eaten. The man started screaming at me: 'You have to be responsible! All this work is beautiful, and yes, it belongs to you, but it also belongs to fashion history. It means something. So protect it properly!'"It suddenly became evident," Louboutin explains. "Necessity creates everything in my life. It was necessary to protect the work of a great part of my life."Louboutin spends spring and fall weekends and the month of August at his home in the Vendée, puttering about in his garden—it's become his haven, a place his mind can wander for design ideas as he pulls weeds. "The magnolia leaf is like patent leather," he notes, "and it always looks beautiful with a deep purple, like prunus purple. There are few plants that are ugly. It's how you use them that may not be pretty.""When we got this house 25 years ago, there was nothing," he says. "Bruno and I decided to put in a central alley and discovered a fountain under a pile of overgrowth." Eventually the sweeping fields behind the archive will undergo a major intervention by Louboutin's boyfriend of 14 years, celebrated French landscape designer Louis Benech. "My father, who was a cabinetmaker, told me, 'Wood has a grain and if you go into the grain, you have beauty. If you go against it, you have splinters—it breaks,' " he says. "And I took that as my view of life. You have to follow the grain—to be sensitive to the direction of life. I never had the dream to be a great designer. My focus was just to do beautiful things."The CBP said it will destroy the more than 20,000 pairs of high-fashion shoes, likely by burning them.

Escobar said a total of three different importers  shipped the counterfeits on July 27 and Aug. 14 of this year.The incident is still under investigation but the importers will likely be charged with a trademark violation.Today Louboutin's company is a global corporation with 55 stores world-wide and five new men's stores on the way—in London, New York, Los Angeles, Dubai and Tokyo. In May, he was honored with a retrospective of his work at the Design Museum in London—a two-month-long show that broke the museum's attendance records, with 38,000 visitors by mid-June. "Never did I think that I'd be celebrating 20 years in business," he says. "I was always thinking about the next day, not even the next season."It's all part of what Louboutin calls "growing organically": never forcing things, just following one project to the next and on and on—a philosophy instilled in him by his father when he was a boy.CBP officials said there were 24,792 seizures of counterfeit and pirated goods in the 2011 fiscal year.One thousand twenty of those trade seizures had a domestic value exceeding $37 million and all took place in the greater Los Angeles area.“This represents an 18 percent increase in the number of seizures from fiscal year 2010,” said Escobar.The CBP said it knows what hot commodities are coming in to the United States and will make sure to keep an eye out for any more counterfeits.
publicado por lixianglan a las 02:45 · 1 Comentario  ·  Recomendar
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By Ryan Russell

Arizona is the 48th state of the United States of America, and is known for its desert climate, extreme warm weather almost all thru out the year and moderate winters. Arizona is fourth among other states to use alternative power solution such as solar energy
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If possible, go green by purchasing second hand products rather than brand new items
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Another way of going green is to use alternative power source. The question "How to be more green in Arizona" is being answered by its inhabitants by using solar PV
publicado por ca, el 02.11.2012 04:59
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