A drama about designer label obsession and two most unlikely lovers.
Giorgio is a young, handsome, compulsive shoplifter with a higher purpose: to steal from the rich, give to the poorly dressed, and make money from those obsessed with fashion but with shallow pockets.
What fuels this compulsion is both his love and knowledge of fashion and style and his contempt for the fashion industry itself. "Fashion houses paying workers two dollars a day in Sri Lanka, charging thousands on Madison Avenue. World out of balance. So, I re-distribute assets."
Merrill is a frumpy and eccentric 25-year-old New York heiress who cares not at all about how she looks or what she wears. (She shops mostly in thrift stores.) What Merrill is most concerned with is getting her PHD and making a name for herself with her groundbreaking treatment of compulsions.
Giorgio shoplifts one time too many and is thrown in jail. The only way out is for him to enroll in the court appointed rehabilitation program with Merrill. Giorgio is terrified of leading the straight life but this is his only ticket out of jail. And for Merrill to get her degree and clinch a book deal she must successfully rehabilitate a compulsive shoplifter. Namely, Giorgio.
Merrill’s program involves a series of brutal and humiliating steps for Giorgio. I.e. he must shoplift and then return the merchandise with an apology.
Soon Merrill is attracted to Giorgio’s magnetic sexiness. Giorgio is attracted to Merrill’s steely intelligence and to the insecure and lovely woman underneath her armor. They argue constantly about values and lifestyles, about clothes and crime. They quarrel, land in bed and end up even more confused than ever.
As part of his treatment Giorgio lands a salesman’s job in a store owned by an affable Greek who treats him like a son. He soon discovers that the store is a front for an operation hijacking fashion lines. He has to confront another moral dilemma: having found the loving father he never had, he finds out he is being seduced into a life of crime again.
Merrill, in the meantime, is totally focused on getting her PHD. She is oblivious to Giorgio’s struggle. Summoned by the PHD committee to validate Merrill’s work Giorgio denounces the program as worthless, killing her chances at getting the PHD.
She is furious and unable to sort out her career and her feelings.
As Giorgio prepares to steal clothes again he realizes Merrill has stolen his heart. Besides, she is the only one who has recognized his true potential. Merrill spends her days aimlessly visiting fashion stores unable to get Giorgio out of her mind. Almost by accident Giorgio creates a line of designs that catapult him to the attention of a big fashion house.
The two lovers find each other again. Giorgio leads her back to her PHD work and helps her find a new and sexy self through fashion, a newfound self-esteem and the probability of a life together.