Yes the business of fashion is sometimes even more interesting than the end product you shell out your hard-earned money to put on your back. Apart from the huge number of brands under the LVMH aegis (check out the LVMHY stocks), many of the major brands are controlled by the Pinault-Printemps-Redoute conglomerate through its backing of the Gucci group (Gucci, YSL, etc...). While some labels are "family" owned, including Prada (which also controls Helmut Lang and Jil Sander) and Armani (stilled 100% controlled by its namesake), many other so-called luxury labels are divisions of larger company - John Varvatos, for example, is backed by Nautica Enterprises, as is Earl Jean. Compounding the fun, different manufacturing companies hold licenses for the production of various lines. For example, IT produces the diffusion lines D&G, Gianfranco Ferre Jeans, and VJC, as well as exte, which is its housebrand; while GFT produces clothing for companies ranging from Calvin Klein collection to Joseph Abboud. Let's face it: when we buy a Prada shirt or Gucci shoes, a great deal of our money is going to buying perceived exclusivity. No matter how well made it is, or how high the import tariffs, much of the high price is for the express purpose of making the commodity inaccessible, and thus, desirable. I guess that just because I know doesn't make me less a sucker. BTW, for all the "conservative" types, who might take this as proof that traditional clothiers are better than designers, Gieves and Hawkes, arguably the most venerable Savile Row house there is, was just bought out by one of these so called designers, who intend to use the access the resources of the house for other lines and also to reposition the venerable Gieves and Hawkes mainline. It seems that no-one is immune.