‘Scandal’ Inspires Clothing Line at The Limited

DURING New York Fashion Week, which ended on Thursday, there was considerable discussion of designs and designers to die for. Beginning on Monday, the women’s apparel retailer The Limited is hoping to stimulate conversations, both actual and virtual, about dresses to double-cross for, skirts to skulk around in and suits to back-stab for.

The Limited is introducing a collection of clothing inspired by “Scandal,” the hit ABC drama about Olivia Pope, a powerful Washington-based crisis handler and fixer, portrayed by Kerry Washington. The melodramatic series, which is to return for a fourth season on Sept. 25, has won praise and fans for its breathless plots replete with political skulduggery, affairs in high places, murder and other twists that elicit from viewers continual cries of “Oh. My. God.”

The “Scandal” collection at The Limited contains more than 70 items, with prices from about $49 to $250. The garments are due in stores and online next week and are scheduled to be available through May, the end of the 2014-15 television season.

A multimedia campaign bills the collection as “Fearless fashion for ladies who lead.” The campaign, with a budget estimated at $12 million, was created by Yard, a New York agency known for advertising for fashion brands. LaForce & Stevens, also in New York, is handling the social media elements on platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and Twitter, using the hashtag #scandalstylethelimited.

The Limited calls the “Scandal” merchandise a collaborative effort of Ms. Washington; Elliot Staples, head of design for the retailer; and Lyn Paolo, the costume designer for “Scandal.” Her stylized look for the series, described as “gladiators in suits,” has been noticed by the fashion press. The three are featured in a video clip that promotes the collection; some print ads, showing models wearing the clothes, also give a shout-out to the creator of “Scandal,” Shonda Rhimes, and feature the logos of the series and ABC.

Those logos signal that the collection is a result of a licensing deal made by The Limited with ABC and the creators of “Scandal.” Financial terms were not disclosed.

The concept “grew out of a segment on ‘Good Morning America’ in fall of 2013 that took outfits Olivia Pope wore on the show and replicated them at affordable price points,” said Diane Ellis, chief executive of The Limited in New Albany, Ohio. “A suit that was ours was featured.” Continue reading the main story