Kira Plastinina, the 16-year-old fashion designer and daughter of billionaire Russian dairy producer Sergei Plastinin is taking her rubles back to Russia, according to Bloomberg.com, one more victim of the flagging economy.
I interviewed the teenage phenom in May when she landed in L.A., opening her first West Coast store on Robertson Boulevard. Her father set up the business for his daughter, turning her fashion sketches into trendy clothes (lots of pink) with an average $48 price tag.
“When I was really little, people asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up,” she told me over lunch at the Ivy. “First, I said a princess, then I said a fashion designer. I’m not grown up, but I am a fashion designer!”
Plastinin spent nearly $80 million for a total of 12 stores in the U.S., but now plans to close nearly all of them. He paid Paris Hilton $2 million to attend Plastinina's fashion show in Russia, tapped high-powered fashion PR firm Harrison & Shriftman to represent his daughter in the U.S., put her up for the summer in Malibu so she could swan around, even hired Chris Brown to perform at her L.A. opening party.
"The number of shoppers in the U.S. fell significantly," Plastinin told Bloomberg. "It became much harder to find money for investment because of the financial crisis. We had enormous plans: New York, then India and China in 2009." According to the report, only one or two U.S. outlets will remain open. Plastinina has 70 stores in Russia.
It had nothing to do with the fact that the clothes were ugly.
-- Booth Moore
Photo: Kira Plastinina in May. Credit: Liz O. Baylen / Los Angeles Times