Fashion designer Patrick Robinson has left his position as creative director at A/X Armani Exchange. While the brand claims the departure was amicable, the New York Post reports that he was “let go quietly” after poor sales and an alleged plagiarism charge.
Robinson had created a “torc” bracelet for Armani Exchange’s men’s collection, made from recycled bullets and handguns, proceeds from which were donated to nonprofit Liberty United to fight gun violence. The bracelets bore striking resemblance to David Yurman’s classic cable cuff bracelets, which have been selling for years.
Page Six says anonymous sources told them that David Yurman notified Armani Exhange that the bracelet design was too similar to Yurman’s cable cuff bracelets. According to one source, Yurman sent a legal letter to Armani Exchange, demanding the company stop selling the bracelets. “Steady declining sales were the main reason for his exit, but this issue was the smoking gun,” said this source. David Yurman representatives deny the letter was sent, and Armani Exchange flatly denies the rumors, saying “Patrick Robinson left the brand amicably several weeks ago. His departure and this alleged claim of the Yurman’s [sic] sending us a cease-and-desist letter are entirely unrelated.”
California-born Robinson attended Parsons School of Design, and was previously creative director of The Gap, from 2007 to 2011, before getting fired after North American sales plummeted. In 2013, he launched his own line of menswear, called Pashko, sold exclusively through crowdfunding site Kickstarter. Named one of Vogue‘s “Rising Stars” in 1996, he’s worked for Giorgio Armani, Perry Ellis, Anne Klein, and Paco Rabanne. He’s married to Vogue‘s market director for fashion and accessories, Virginia Smith.
We’ve reached out to Armani Exchange for comment and will update the post if and when we hear back.
[via the New York Post]