Since 2007, Liz Claiborne has eliminated over 2,000 jobs, closed distribution centers, rid itself of licensing brands and suspended employee pay increases. Things have been so bad (their chief executive flies coach) that their famous chief creative officer, Tim Gunn, said last night at the Bailey House auction he even worries about his job. “I’m grateful every day that I still have a job at Liz Claiborne. I make no assumptions about me," he told us. “I’m confident that Liz Claiborne, Inc. will pull out of this, because we’re operating so thoughtfully and so strategically ... But it is a challenging time.” Gunn added that they expect things to get worse. "We are making no blue-sky assumptions about the future. We’re stacking the sandbags for a long haul of economic downturn."
If Gunn does get laid off, he can always focus on his television career. Project Runway might never come back, but he can always be a red-carpet television personality, after his heroic performance for ABC's Academy Awards preshow. “The only scary moment was when the producer was in my ears saying, ‘Go after Brad and Angelina,’ you know, because their publicist had said they will speak to no one. They didn’t care that we were the official red-carpet show. And my adrenaline kicked in, my brain went off — if it had been on I never would have had the guts and courage to do it — and out I went!” Gunn told us. “So not only did I get them, but I was envious of Jess Cagle getting Sarah Jessica Parker and Matthew Broderick, because I wanted them, so when they walked by, I went running out on the carpet to talk to them, too. So I said to the producers, how about next year we do Red-Carpet Ambush with Tim Gunn?”