Kimora Lee Simmons: 'I'm flattered people copied Baby Phat'
Kimora Lee Simmons felt flattered when she noticed other fashion houses were copying her designs.
The former model launched urban label Baby Phat in 1998 with her then-husband Russell Simmons, and it quickly became a cult brand loved by trendsetters and celebrities alike.
Baby Phat broke the mould when it came to fashion, and other designers quickly took notice of the work going on at Kimora’s company.
“Maybe Baby Phat was different or maybe it wasn’t so different. In a lot cases, they were trying to emulate it,” she pondered to thefader.com. “We weren’t the first ones to make a ski jacket because, of course people, have been skiing for a hundred years but we were the first ones to make that fashion.
“Then, sure enough, it was being worn over (at) Ralph Lauren and Donna Karan. So, they definitely emulated it. It is said that imitation is a high form of flattery so, if you look at it in that way, that’s what they were doing. Other people would say they were stealing.”
Despite Baby Phat’s influence shaping trends and styles, Kimora, 41, says she doesn’t think the label ever got the proper credit it deserved.
But she’s quick to add she didn’t go into design seeking anyone’s approval or praise.
“I don’t ever look at things to get the credit because if so then there were all lot of things that didn’t get credit along the way. I know what it was and what my part was in the culture and in the upbringing of young ladies at that time,” she stated.
“I often say (that) for fashion week, we were the first brand to broadcast live on a jumbotron in Times Square. A lot of people did it after that. I was the first designer in history to have a fashion show at Radio City Music Hall and others have done that since then.”