From Louis Vuitton’s new Mona Lisa bags to Farfetch’s augmented reality stores, these are the top international fashion news stories of the week.
Louis Vuitton Unveils Art-Inspired Collaboration with Jeff Koons
Louis Vuitton elevated the artistry of fashion to a new level this week, unveiling their collaboration with the master of pop-culture art, Jeff Koons. The collaboration, titled ‘Masters’, sees the classical past and the modern future of the art world collide, as it refashions some of history’s most renowned paintings into high fashion bags and accessories.
The collection was unveiled at the Louvre Museum to a crowd of influential guests including Michelle Williams, Léa Seydoux, Jennifer Connelly, and Chloe Sévigney. The event marked the second occasion this year which has seen Louis Vuitton use the Louvre as the exquisite backdrop to their creations. In March, their Fall 2017 collection was showcased amidst the regal Renaissance sculptures of the Cour Marly.
The new ‘Masters’ collection is set to be available April 28.
Vogue Arabia Appoint New Editor-In-Chief
There has been a significant shift in the tide this week as both British Vogue and Vogue Arabia appointed new editor-in-chiefs. Merely days after the launch party of Vogue Arabia, the Saudi princess Deena Aljuhani Abdulaziz was fired from her role as the magazine’s editor-in-chief. The ejection from her role stems from a discordance in values, with the princess stating, “I stand behind my values and vision for Vogue Arabia and I refused to compromise when I felt the publisher’s approach conflicted with the values which underpin our readers and the role of the editor-in-chief in meeting those values in a truly authentic way.” Filling the position is the former editor-in-chief of Architectural Digest Middle East, Manuel Arnaut. Beginning his career at Vogue Portugal and “having grown up devouring each page of its international editions”, Arnaut has described how he is “honoured to have the opportunity to come ‘home’, at the helm of Vogue Arabia”
Gucci Celebrates Diversity With Pre-Fall Collection Campaign
This year, Gucci has shown us the future with a regal, space inspired Fall 2017 runway show. They have cast a reflection on the present with their satirical Gucci memes timepiece campaign. Now, they are taking a trip back to the past, with their “Soul Scene” Pre-Fall 2017 campaign, which is a tribute to the Northern Soul underground movement of the late 1960’s. The movement fused classic disco moves with upbeat soul music, and it is the charged atmosphere of this era that is brought back to life with this collection.
The campaign itself celebrates diversity and is true to the heart of the soul movement as it features only models of colour. The energetic images showcase the models dancing and posing, doing the splits, handstands, and backflips. Creative director Alessandro Michele was inspired by photography from the “Made You Look” exhibition held in London last year, and the work of Malian artist, Malick Sidibé. The exhibition displayed images from different artists and celebrated the expression of men of colour. Sidibé’s work captured lives of the people of Mali in the sixties and seventies, and the influence of the Northern Soul movement on the families, parties, and youth culture.
Puma Takes Forever 21 to Court Over “Copycat” Designs
Puma showed its claws as it engaged in a legal battle with American fast-fashion retailer, Forever 21, bringing a claim regarding design patent, trade dress, and copyright infringement. The luxury athletics brand is alleging that Forever 21 is now selling knock-off shoes, almost identical to Rihanna’s latest FentyxPuma collection. The shoes in question include the Creeper, Fur Slide, and Bow Slide styles. In order to maintain their position as a luxury industry, Puma uses strategic marketing and produces only limited quantities of their products, to ensure they remain exclusive. This has led to their fury at the copycat designs, with the label arguing in court that “when the Fenty shoes are associated with a cheap mass market product they are no longer regarded as a luxury item and they lose their brand appeal to consumers, and so does the Puma brand as a whole.”
The final decision will be announced at a later date, but until then, Forever 21 is free to continue selling the dubious shoes. This is not the first time the mass retailer has been taken to the courts over alleged stolen designs. To add further fuel to the fire, fans of Kanye West have also taken up arms against Forever 21 on social media, calling out the blatant copying of merchandise from Kanye’s recent ‘Life of Pablo’ tour.
H&M Promotes Sustainability with ‘Conscious Exclusive’ Collection
Reduce. Reuse. Recycle. We were all taught the famous three R’s of sustainability in school, however, it appears that the final R has been forgotten in our treatment of clothing. In 2016, H&M set out to change this, publishing a Sustainability Report in which they pledged to use 100% recycled or sustainably sourced materials by 2040. This week, they took a further step towards achieving this mission as they released the first look at their upcoming H&M “Conscious Exclusive” 2017 collection. The collection, which includes a stunning, blush pink pleated gown made from recycled shoreline waste, was “inspired by our five senses, made with sustainability in mind.”
Farfetch Introduces Their F90 Delivery Initiative and Augmented Reality Stores
The future is now, and accordingly, we want things now. Fortunately for us all, the team at Farfetch have found a solution to the disconnect between the online and offline worlds of retail. Their new innovations blend the immediacy and power of online shopping, where you have an entire collection at your fingertips, with the pleasures of the real world shopping experience. Introducing: The Store of the Future. This new initiative uses data accumulated from customers and their shopping habits, to create an augmented reality shopping experience. The technology will allow users to share their previous shopping activity with a store’s staff upon entering a store, to allow a more personal experience. Launching later this year, the technology will premiere in Browns department stores and New York’s Thom Browne boutique. CEO of Browns, Holli Rogers, has commended the technology, saying that it will “allow our customers to enjoy a bespoke and effortless experience that harmonises the best parts of boutique shopping with the speed and convenience of e-tail.”