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The half that love him love her, and the half that hate him love her—because she’s not him!
”One Wednesday in early December, I spend some time with Ivanka at Trump Tower: Her father’s fabulously dated office is on the twenty-sixth floor; Ivanka and her two brothers, Eric and Don, Jr., toil for the Trump Organization a few floors down.
Every aspect of their life is just as important to them as their careers.” Murphy tacks glossy pages of the brand book on the wall. “Sophia started life as a Dumpster diver and Ivanka grew up on Fifth Avenue—but their message is actually very similar: It’s about empowerment and redefining what it means to be a woman in this generation.”Recently Ivanka has been making the rounds of morning talk shows promoting the Web site—and its “Women Who Work” video campaign. she I meet Ivanka after work one evening in the lobby of her building on Park Avenue, just a few blocks from Trump Tower, and we head up to her apartment.
One side reads, “We Are FEMININE” in big type over pictures of women in tastefully sleeveless floral-print dresses; on the opposite page, under “We Are Not GIRLY,” there are three women dressed in polka dots and bubble gum–pink stilettos. “I think we’ve really hit on something that is relevant but also optimistic.” She quickly gets down to brass tacks, adding, “and obviously, it benefits the brand. When I ask her older brother, Don, Jr., what it’s been like working side by side with his sister these past ten years, he says, “It’s amazing to see the level of talent she possesses now; she’s just a more complete businesswoman.” And even he, who freely admits he knows nothing about fashion, recognizes she may be onto something with her latest venture. The elevator opens into a spacious foyer, where Arabella, who is three, is squealing and running around in a sparkly little dress.
After all, Donald Trump is virtually synonymous with the modern-day concept of branding.
But what most people agree makes him and his empire so enduring is that he is unapologetically himself.
“I was like, ‘I don’t want to look like I’m telling people I have all the answers.
It’s very much in line with our current positioning.” If I have one criticism of Ivanka, it’s that she can sometimes slip into a Boardroom Lady character, saying things like “Thanks for taking the lead on that.” Perhaps this is a side effect of playing a version of herself on all these years, or maybe it’s simply a defense mechanism built up after having been thrust into the spotlight since she was a child. “She was able to very easily identify something that’s been lacking. There is a toy suitcase open on the floor, bursting with sequins and taffeta.
“She lives in princess dresses,” says Ivanka, who scoops up Arabella and kisses her, and then heads into the living room to squeeze Joseph, one and a half, who is sitting on the floor, playing with his toys and smiling at Xi Xi, the nanny, who is Chinese and is teaching the children to speak Mandarin.
He built every building since Trump Tower.” She pauses for a moment and adds. Despite the bad economy, it succeeded beyond anyone’s expectations, paving the way for her line of shoes. “Because it’s so seeing the way our competitors think women dress.
And that is when she saw that there was a big hole in the market: No one was designing for the young professional woman who wants clothes with more style than Ann Taylor but not as fashion-disposable as H&M. Me and my peers, we’re working really hard at being moms and sisters and professionals.
Next I find myself in a conference room with startling views of Manhattan. We head down to a lower floor for an Ivanka Trump brand meeting in a small, glassy conference room dominated by an egg-shaped white table.