BY RHONDA COHEN
Victor Costa has turned his
ability to follow the trends into
a $50 million business.
ictor Costa wears his title
"King of the Copycat"
designers like the Queen of
England wears her crown.
"It's a royalty of sorts,"
he says proudly, sitting in
his Manhattan showroom
where his Ungaro, Scassi,
Valentino and Lacroix-inspired dresses
hang neatly from a metal rod.
"The word 'fashion' wouldn't exist if
there were no copying. The mirroring
of the highest standard has been the
basis of our society from Day One.
There's a Rolls Royce, a Tiffany, a
Beluga caviar — and there's a customer
who knows and wants what is con-
sidered the ultimate. It takes talent to
look at the world and see what is in the
wind for his customer so that she
always looks pretty and feels provoked
to buy," Costa explains.
Using his talent to copy the top
couturiers is not at all intimidating to the
charming Texan. Speaking in a soothing
Southern drawl and running his fingers
through his neatly arranged, wavy salt
and pepper hair, Costa says of his con-
vincing imitations, "If all I had to do was
copy designs to have a $50 million
business, then I think a lot of other peo-
ple would be doing it." Indeed, French
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