Deluxe: How Luxury Lost Its Luster

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Deluxe: How Luxury Lost Its Luster
Deluxe - How Luxury Lost Its Luster - book cover.jpg
AuthorDana Thomas
CountryUnited States
SubjectLuxury goods, Fashion
Published2007 (Penguin Press)
Media typePrint, e-book
Pages384 pages

Deluxe: How Luxury Lost Its Luster is a 2007 book by Paris-based American journalist Dana Thomas.[1] It was a New York Times bestseller.


The book examines the corporate consolidation of small family-run luxury businesses into luxury goods holding companies, and their process of "democratizing" luxury by making it available for sale to the masses in the forms of handbags, clothing, and accessories. These new luxury conglomerates—principally Kering, which owns Alexander McQueen, Balenciaga, Brioni, and Gucci; Richemont, which owns Dunhill, Cartier, Jaeger-LeCoultre, Montblanc, and Van Cleef & Arpels, and LVMH, which owns Bulgari, Dior, DKNY, Fendi, Givenchy, Marc Jacobs, Louis Vuitton, Thomas Pink, as well as De Beers, TAG Heuer, and Sephora—have achieved success with fashion shows, provocative commercials, dressing celebrities for red carpet events, and through licensing, franchising, outlet malls, and online retailing.

According to Thomas, this trend has led to inferior quality, rampant outsourcing to developing nations, and a massive surge in both counterfeiting and the illicit activities it funds.[2]


Publishers Weekly wrote: "Despite her grasp of business machinations, her argument that conglomerates have stolen luxury's soul doesn't entirely wash. As her tales of quotidian vs. ultra luxury make clear, the rich and chic can still distinguish themselves, even when Las Vegas hosts the world's ritziest brands."[3]


  1. ^ "Penguin Books Group". Retrieved December 28, 2010.
  2. ^ Kakutani, Michiko (August 21, 2007). "The Devil Wears Hermès (He Bought It at the Caesars Palace Mall in Las Vegas)". New York Times.
  3. ^ Deluxe: How Luxury Lost Its Luster