“Bloomingdale’s is the end of shopping because there isn’t anyone to wait on you”- Diana Vreeland 1984. If that was in 1984…. How are we doing today?
Preservation and innovation coexisting.
I’ve given my life to our industry… still have plenty to give but I find myself torn between today’s expectations and yesterday’s standards. We have lost our way and some of the most passionate players in the industry? The talent that has spent 20 years intimately dressing their clients one-by-one vs. designers being forced to work in a mass consumption process. Have the last 5 years been a disservice to the art or our turning point?
How do we find balance between who we were and who we want to be…again? A great book written by professor at The American University of Paris shines a light on where it all went wrong, taking the reader on a journey behind closed doors and factory floors. It is a perspective worthy of the conversation. Deluxe by Dana Thomas.
“The luxury industry has changed the way people dress. It has realigned our economic class system. It has changed the way we interact. It has become part of our social fabric. To achieve this, it has sacrificed its integrity, undermined its products, tarnished its history, and hoodwinked its consumers. In order to make luxury “accessible”, they have stripped away all that has made it special. Luxury has lost its luster”. -Dana Thomas
“We wrote thank you letter when customers shopped at our store,” Hayman told me. “We had files on all the customers, thick files, and if they hadn’t bought anything in a while. we followed up,” usually with a hand written note that would be delivered by a Silver Wraith Rolls-Royce with the license plate number 273. Giorgio “wasn’t a ladies’ store,it was like a home”.
Fine lines and tight ropes.
How you write your advertising copy will be based on where you will place your ad. If it’s a billboard ad, you’ll need a super catchy headline and simple design due to the speed at which people will pass. Online ads are similar; consumers are so inundated with Internet advertising that your ad must be quick and catchy.
“The saddest thing I can imagine is to get used to luxury.”- Charlie Chaplin
“Chanel №5 was and still is constructed of approximately eighty ingredients. The most important being 1,000 Jasmine flowers and 7 May roses that go into each bottle. Since 1986 these specific flowers have been solely provided by Joseph Mul. №5 produces a profit margin of 40%, 4X of its competitors and is said to sell every 30 seconds somewhere in the world every day. Today, most luxury brands do not own, create, manufacture, or distribute their perfumes. Instead they are licensed out to conglomerates such as Proctor & Gamble or big “soap companies” such as Coty, Estee Lauder and L’Oreal. “I hear briefs of brands that declare they want to create a ‘classic’ like №5, This is a false notion. We should create a perfume of its time, and perhaps it can become classic.”- Jacques Polge”- snippit from Deluxe Chanel №5 has been untouched since Gabriel “CoCo” Chanel approved the formula and process.
A few words to question who we are today and remind us what we used to stand for. “The saddest thing I can imagine is to get used to luxury.”- Charlie Chaplin
If you love this industry or have just been taken by surprise, take a read of Deluxe, it‘s a beautiful reminder of how it all started. Might even light a fire in you belly. https://www.amazon.com/Deluxe-How-Luxury-Lost-Luster/dp/0143113704.
We’ll be continuing the conversation.