Posts Tagged ‘retail’

Fashion for the Masses

Wednesday, January 4th, 2012

Jason Wu recently announced that he is the latest fashion designer to join the ranks of main-stream collaborators. Following the likes of Karl Lagerfeld for Macy’s, Missoni for Target, and Versace for H&M, Jason Wu is bringing his fashion efforts to Super Targets everywhere.

In this economy, there is a select group of people who can afford the garments found in traditional fashion lines. To combat this, designers have begun to expand their vision and influence by taking their creations and giving them to the masses. The method has proven to be very successful with fashion fanatics lining up early to get their hands on the limited collections. I have a friend who lined up at Target for the Missoni release, only to fight of a middle-aged man to get a coveted bedroom throw. The throw later sold for more than $500 on eBay (originally under $75).

From a branding standpoint, this is a win-win strategy. The fashion houses now have a new way to maximize their awareness by drawing in the fashionably clueless to their lines. It also makes their brand more approachable and seemingly cost-conscious in times of economic turmoil. On the other hand, these stores such as Target and H&M are simply elevating their brand equity by giving their consumers the chance to experience luxurious designs at affordable prices. This makes them source for fashion expertise, drawing customers to their own collections as well as making them an influencer in the fashion industry.

While some may think that this type of designer collaboration cheapens the designer’s brand, I see it from a different perspective. I think it’s a smart way to keep people interested in your designs, gain awareness and most importantly, make some extra cash. The fashion industry took a big hit with the recession. If commercial lines of this nature are what it takes to keep these fashion houses afloat, I can’t help but encourage more designers to jump on the collaboration bandwagon.

Here are some examples of the designs featured in these campaigns:

Karl Lagerfeld for Impulse at Macy's

Missoni for Target

Versace for H&M