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Fred Segal, Designer Who Commodified California Cool, Dies at 87

  • March 01, 2021

“I learned at a very young age that the area of no competition is in integrity,” Mr. Segal told Haute Living. “When I was selling in my store to my customers and they came in wanting to buy this or that, if they put an outfit on and they asked me for my advice, part of the time I’d say, ‘Take that off, don’t even buy that, that would be ridiculous, you don’t even look good in that.’ That’s really deep honesty. You don’t find that in business, you know?”

There were eventually Fred Segal stores in Taiwan and in Bern, the capital of Switzerland. In 2015, the brand opened a store in Tokyo that also included an on-site food truck that sold Mexican street corn, shrimp on a roll, and hot dogs paired with Coca-Cola and Corona.

The name Fred Segal became so well known that it was casually referenced in movies like “Clueless” and “Legally Blonde.”

Mr. Segal is survived by his wife, Tina; five children, Michael, Judy, Sharon, Nina and Annie; 10 grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren.

Mike Ives contributed reporting, and Jack Begg contributed research.

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