item 1 - Charlotte Kramer, Janet Reis, Sid Mayar interview, 1989 November 29

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Charlotte Kramer, Janet Reis, Sid Mayar interview, 1989 November 29


  • 1989 November 29 (Creation)

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  • Original media: 1 audio cassette and paper transcription
  • Digital media files

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Janet Reis started her career at the store in 1947, working as a model at the Salon Moderne, run by Sophie Gimbel. She subsequently became a buyer for dresses and eveningwear, and held a position as a buyer in the latter for 10 years until her retirement from Saks in 1991. At that time she started Janet Reis Inc. opening a showroom at 530 Seventh Avenue, which specialized in special-occasion dresses from the U.S., Britain and Canada. Among those she represented were the British firms Bellville Sassoon, Carole Lee and Eavis & Brown, Canadian designer Ann Ciona, and Californian Ricco Antonio.

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Sidney Mayer was born in 1928 in Brooklyn, NY and started as a trainee at Saks Fifth Avenue in 1950 right after graduating from the Graduate School of Business at Columbia University. He spent his entire career at the store. Mayer became a men's clothing buyer in the late 1950s and rose to general merchandise manager of men's and boy's wear, and children's in the mid-1970s. He subsequently became a general merchandise manager for women's accessories, shoes, lingerie and gifts. Later he became the first vice president named for men’s clothing at the company and ultimately rose to senior vice president. During his time at the retailer, Mayer was the first to give Ralph Lauren a shop at Saks at a time when designer boutiques were few and far between. He traveled the world buying fabrics for the company’s private-label offerings and helped build the store’s men’s and boys’ departments as well as its men’s shoe area. In the mid-1980s, he became a senior vice president and general merchandise manager for merchandise planning and liquidation.

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  • Legacy audio ID no: AOH76

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