LACOSTE

The origin begins with René Lacoste (1904-1996) during his tennis career he wore a small crocodile embroidered on the pocket of his jacket and he was called “the Crocodile.”

Index

  1. The Origin: Rene Lacoste
  2. The Lacoste Polo is Born
  3. Sporting Fashion
    1. Preppy Wardrobe
  4. Creative Director: Christophe Lemaire
  5. 75th Anniversary
  6. Creative Director: Felip Oliveria Baptista
  7. Acquired By Maus Freres
  8. 80th Anniversary Logo
  9. Current Situation

The Origin: Rene Lacoste

Founder Rene Lacoste
Founder Rene Lacoste

The origin begins with René Lacoste (1904-1996) during his tennis career he wore a small crocodile embroidered on the pocket of his jacket and he was called “the Crocodile.” Maybe due to his fierceness or perhaps because a certain bet with his team captain where the prize happened to be a suitcase made in alligator skin. In any case, Lacoste embraced the name to the point of getting the crocodile embroidered on his blazer and as simple as that, the tennis myth came along with a clothing legend.

The Lacoste Polo is Born

Officially in 1926 Lacoste, a practical man, adopted the short-sleeved shirt for both on and off the tennis court. Since then, his style has inspired the so-called functional elegance. In 1933 René Lacoste retired from tennis, founded La Société Chemise Lacoste with André Gillier, then designed and decided began to produce a button-neck short-sleeve sweater in white piqué cotton, with a small green crocodile embroidered on the left side of the chest. The garment was immediately successful as sports clothing, especially in tennis and golf, thanks to having a longer back than front, so as to remain well tucked inside the pants even after large or brisk movements.

Lacoste White Polo Logo
White Polo with Logo

In 1941 he was appointed as President of the Fédération Française de Tennis, meanwhile he infused colorful life to his clothing line with a range of tones on the polo shirts, in addition sneakers and the first children collection were conceived.

In 1963, Bernard Lacoste took over the management of the company from his father René. Significant company growth was seen under Bernard’s management. Also, at this time Lacoste jerseys were manufactured in 4 colors, in 1967 in 21, and were equally suited to men, women and children. By the end of 1963 around 300,000 products were sold annually.

Sporting Fashion

Success and diffusion arrived during the 1960s when sporting fashion became more popular. The brand reached its height of popularity in the US during the late 1970s and became the signature 1980s “preppy” wardrobe item, even getting mentioned in Lisa Birnbach‘s Official Preppy Handbook of 1980.

Lacoste 1976 Campaign
1976 Campaign

Creativity and innovations have been always center points at Lacoste, therefore in 1970 Ruben Torres was appointed as fashion designer. He had many outstanding achievements during this period, including the creation of the memorable advertising campaign “Crocodiles”, the first boutique on Avenue Victor Hugo, Paris and the fragrances collection embodying the joie de vivre feeling characteristic of the brand.

In 1986 Guy Paulin is appointed Fashion Designer. The world was changing quickly and in 1996 the first Lacoste website was launched under the direction of Gilles Rosies as Fashion designer, appointed in 1994. At this time, the company also began to introduce other products into their line including shorts, perfume, optical and sunglasses, tennis shoes, deck shoes, walking shoes, watches, and various leather goods.

Preppy Wardrobe

Lacoste: The Crocodiles Campaign
The Crocodiles Campaign

Lacoste is known for their crocodile logo plus several other key DNA elemnts. This includes stripes, color blocking, piping, rib knit sweaters, punch (tennis racket handle material),monochrome, and net pattern. The style has always been for people with a preppy wardrobe who play a lot of tennis or golf. 

Creative Director: Christophe Lemaire

In 2000 the new creative director was Christophe Lemaire, a “student” of Christian Lacroix. He had the task of introducing the brand towards modernity, though remaining linked to its sport roots. He took over from Gilles Rosier, who had widened the crocodile’s horizon of sportswear. But it was until the arrival of Christophe Lemaire, that Lacoste’s first fashion show was presented in New York City, 2003.

Lacoste Christophe Lemaire
Christophe Lemaire

Also, an agreement was signed with Samsonite for the manufacture and distribution of leather goods. The diversification is transverse compared to the other three areas of business: activewear, which represents 20%, sportswear with 60% and Club clothing. By 2001 consolidated turnover was €850 million, +8% compared to 2000: 75% was represented by clothing.

In May of 2002 Lacoste eyewear aimed at the Brazilian market. The Group L’Amy, which produces and distributes the crocodile’s glasses, signed a distribution and production license agreement with Technol Group, a South-American eyewear producer. Also, this year 600,000 pieces of leather goods were sold, generating a turnover of €10 million.

In January of 2003 the company opened a store on Fifth Avenue, New York. By the end of 2003 the brand is distributed in 120 countries and has 718 own-brand boutiques, 433 in Europe, 156 in Asia and 129 in America, most of them franchised. 65% of Lacoste is in the hands of the Lacoste family, now in the second generation; the remaining 35% is owned by the French company Devanlay, which also produces and distributes clothing. In the last ten years, the annual growth rate has been constant around 8-12%, transforming a single-manufactured brand, the shirt, into a lifestyle. The shirt, however, is the best selling item and is still produced as it was originally, using 38.63 miles of Egyptian or Peruvian cotton and mother-of-pearl buttons. The Italian market ranks third for importance, with about €70 million of turnover.

Lacoste Sneaker 1963
Sneaker 1963

In Lacoste relaunches its “1963 tennis shoe” with contemporary colours and patterns. The shoes style is named “RENÉ” in tribute to their inventor. Then, in 2006 the René Lacoste foundation is created. Its mission is to support and fund projects for children to transmit key values through sport.

75th Anniversary

Lacoste 75th Anniversary The Future of Tennis
75th Anniversary: The Future of Tennis

In 2008 Lacoste celebrates its 75th anniversary , To celebrate its 75th anniversary, Lacoste looked back on its tennis history by fast-forwarding 75 years to the year 2083 and how tennis will be played in the future. Through a 3D TV, A space age tennis player showed off his new moves on a new court. Meanwhile,  Lacoste released another video to explored champion tennis player, Andy Roddick’s vision of tennis past present and future. Other videos explored the connection Lacoste brought to the game of tennis of the past and tennis of the future through its present as a sportswear powerhouse.

Creative Director: Felipe Oliveira Baptista

In 2010 Portugese designer, Felipe Oliveira Baptista, becomes the new fashion designer of Lacoste. He offers an essential reinterpretation of the brand values.

Also that year, Lacoste creates the Lacoste lab in collaboration with fashion designer Christophe Pillet to promote innovation.

Then, in 2011 Lacoste opens new flagship stores, designed by Christophe Pollet, in Paris and Hamburg. Also at this time, 53 million Lacoste products have been sold through 1,165 stores and over 2000 departments stores across 114 countries. The brand claims, two crocodiles were sold every second.

Acquired By Maus Freres

In November 2012 Lacoste was bought outright by Swiss family-held group Maus Frères. Also, for the first time, Lacoste opens a boutique in Paris entirely focused on women. Next to that, they open their first store in Shibuya, Tokyo, followed by Miami and a new flagship store in Knightsbridge, London. The brand re-strategized their social media and now the facebook page attracts 10 million followers.

80th Anniversary Logo  

Lacoste 80th Anniversary Logo
80th Anniversary Logo

In 2013 for Lacoste’s 80th birthday, they released an anniversary logo along with an exclusive collection of high-end wares. The items in collaboration with Maison Francaises range from leather goods, to jewelers and bakeries, producing everything from crocodile duffels to eclairs. The whole set goes on display at Colette in Paris starting June 10th.

In 2014 Lacoste is named the official partner for the Olympic and Paralympic French teams.

In 2016 Lacoste opens a new flagship store in the World Trade Center, New York, followed by one in Paris.

Current Situation

In February 2017 In honour of the brands 85th birthday, Lacoste announces that they will swap New York Fashion week for Paris fashion week for the SS18 collection. Also, tennis player Novak Djokovic was named brand ambassador for Lacoste. This obligation includes a five-year contract and he will appear in advertising campaigns.

Lacoste 2017 Campaign
2017 Campaign

Today the brand is continually evolving, is always fresh and dynamic as his founder. Now in an environment where the “casual Friday” occurs almost everyday, this is transformed for good into “casual elegance” and thrilling collaborations like the latest between Lacoste and Supreme are happening as a response to the changing times.

LA PERLA

The Italian luxury lifestyle brand created by Ada Masotti in Bologna. La Perla began with handmade lingerie pieces and expanded into beach wear, sleepwear, bags, shoes, and ready-to-wear.

Index

  1. The Origin: Handmade Lingerie
  2. Brand Development
  3. Second Generation
  4. Men’s Prêt-à-Porter
  5. 50th Anniversary
  6. La Perla Purchased 
  7. Current Situation

The Origin: Handmade Lingerie

In 1954 Ada Masotti, a corset maker from Bologna, set up a lingerie production company and named it La Perla. Not having elastic fibers available, she focused on tailoring handmade pieces. During this time, female silhouettes were accentuated in fashion and her creations matched latest fashion trends. Ada Masotti’s motto was “never compromise on quality and innovation”.

Mame Fashion Dictionary Ada Masotti Portrait
Ada Masotti Portrait

The brand DNA is based on Leavers lacework (named after an English loom, of which only 1,200 examples remain in the world), Cornelly embroidery, macramé (embroidery on a fabric which is later destroyed), soutache (an ornamental braid applied by hand usually in fancy pattern); the frastaglio (traditional Florentine flat stitch working). La Perla gained exclusive worldwide rights to the production of the extremely elastic Lycra crépe-de-chine.  

Mame Fashion Dictionary La Perla Leavers Lace
Leavers Lace

Brand Development

During the 60s there was a lot of change and rebellion going on around the world. The hippie movement was taking over the fashion world. Ada Masotti realized the changes and adapted the lingerie. So, La Perla launched more colorful creations including multi-colored floral, plaid and checked patterns.

Through the 70s, La Perla introduced more silk, lace and transparent lightness. Including the creation of the silk jersey triangle bra, which allowed more movement. In 1978, La Perla launched its stretch lace sets, mirroring fashion trends with its clinging dresses and natural flowing lines.

Mame Fashion Dictionary: La Perla 1970 Silk Jersey Triangle Bra
1970 Silk Jersey Triangle Bra

Ada Masotti also created La Perla Maison, a collection featuring a range of garments in pure silk satin with embroidered inserts and frastaglio finishing, a technique that to this day is carried out by hand by the artisans of the La Perla atelier.

Mame Fashion Dictionary La Perla Iconic Frastaglio Lace
Iconic Frastaglio Lace

Second Generation

Starting in the 80s, La Perla started its international expansion under the management of  the second generation, Alberto Masotti, who became president. He is responsible for the company’s huge growth, with more than 20 brands, like La Perla, La Perla Studio, La Perla Ritmo, Malizia, Marvel, Occhiverdi, AnnaClub, Oceano, Aquasuit, Joelle, Grigio Perla (man wear), Grigio sport (man wear) and Baby.

Also, Alberto Masotti’s wife, Olga Masotti, was hired by Ada Masotti as a designer. Through the years the Masotti family redefined lingerie as a clothing accessory.

By 2001 La Perla offered a limited range of women’s clothing and was looking to expand. So, in September 2001 the brand débuted their new underwear and beachwear lines at Milano Moda Donna. To achieve its sales targets, the group created a new styling department and allocated investments in marketing and distribution. Shops were opened in Monaco, Moscow, and Chicago.

Mame Fashion Dictionary: La Perla Underwear
La Perla Underwear

Also during 2001 a new Creative Coordinator was entrusted, Sigurd Steinunn, 35, from Iceland who previously worked with Calvin Klein and Tom Ford. Steinunn was supported by six designers and by Anna Masotti who, after graduating from Dams, was made Fashion Coordinator.

By the end of 2001, the company had a consolidated turnover of €235 million, 48% in the Italian market, 52% abroad. The company had 54 own-brand shops, 38 of which were abroad, and the workforce totaled 1,400 people, plus as many in the associated company. Also, the début of the new boutiques in Japan (Fukuoka), US (Costa Mesa, Chicago) and the web boutique, www.laperla.com.

Men’s Prêt-à-Porter

In April 2002 Grigioperla Touch is the new men’s prêt-à-porter of La Perla, which made its début at Milano Moda Uomo. Then, in September an alliance was created between technology and fashion, and with Nylstar, a giant in technological innovation in the field of fibers and yarns. In addition to product innovation, the distribution network was further expanded through new own-brand shops, in addition to the 15 in Italy and 24 abroad. After the début in Madrid, La Perla also opened in Soho, New York. Later, in December, Alessandro Dell’Acqua, designer from Naples, became the new Creative Director of the prêt-à-porter lines. The year closed with a turnover of €250 million.

Mame Fashion Dictionary La Perla Men's Collection Grigioperla
La Perla Men’s Collection Grigioperla

50th Anniversary

In November 2004 the company celebrated 50 years of business with an exhibition dedicated to the Bologna painter, Elisabetta Sirani (1638-1665). The choice was dictated by the desire to pay tribute to female creativity. Also, for its 50th anniversary, the brand created a limited edition collection made with Valencienne lace, produced on the ancient mechanic looms of Calais, the most important Leavers lace centre in the world.

In 2007 the brand launched the iconic Cage bustier, worn by Victoria Beckham, for the Spice Girl reunion video “Headlines”.

Mame Fashion Dictionary: La Perla Iconic Cage Bustier
Iconic Cage Bustier

In October 2008, Jeff Hansen, already owned 70% of the company, and acquired the remaining 30% from the Masotti family, becoming the unique owner of the brand. The renovation plans include to concentrate production into a single factory, enhance the style and development of the technical-stylistic laboratories, and return to producing the products La Perla is famous for, underwear and beachwear.

La Perla Purchased

2011 was an important year for the brand with a collaboration with designer Jean Paul Gaultier, and the incursion in the shapewear market. Later, in 2013, La Perla was purchased by Italian entrepreneur Silvio Scaglia and Pacific Global Management. Also, during this year the brand launched a Made to Measure service available at the brand’s most important flagships stores.

Mame Fashion Dictionary: La Perla Made-to-Measure Services
Made-to-Measure Services

Through 2014 strategic changes took place, including a new conceptual store design developed with Italian architect Roberto Baiocchi. Also, a new creative turn headed by French art director Fabien Baron.

Mame Fashion Dictionary La Perla Atelier Collection Paris 2015 Hôtel Salomon de Rothschild
La Perla Atelier Collection Paris 2015 at Hôtel Salomon de Rothschild

La Perla showed its first Atelier Collection in Paris 2015, the runway took place at Hôtel Salomon de Rothschild. The pieces were made by hand and its elaboration took about 14 months, after the show the pieces were displayed at the Brands boutique in Rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré.

Current Situation

Mame-Fashion-Dictionary-La-Perla-Silvio-Scaglia-and-Creative-Director-Julia-Haart-February-2017
Chairman, Silvio Scaglia and Creative Director, Julia Haart (February 2017)

In 2016 the shoe designer Julia Haart was named Creative Director, and debuted with the Spring/Summer 2017 collection in September 2016 at Milan Fashion week.

Currently, the brand is owned by Pacific Global Management, overseen by Chairman, Silvio Scaglia, and Creative Director Julia Haart. The current muse is Kendall Jenner who appears in all their campaigns. The company continues to live by the founder Ada Masotti’s motto, “Never compromise on quality and innovation”.

Mame Fashion Dictionary: Kendall Jenner La Perla 2017 Campaign
Kendall Jenner La Perla 2017 Campaign

LOUIS VUITTON

Louis Vuitton is a French luxury goods brand that began by making trunks and luggage in 1854. Mostly known for their iconic LV monogram print, created in 1896, that appears on all their products.

Index

  1. The Origins
  2. First Boutique in Paris
  3. Son Georges and Grandson Gatson
  4. The Monogram Canvas is Born
  5. Personalized Luggage
  6. Louis Vuitton Merges with Moet-Hennessey
  7. First Artistic Director: Marc Jacobs
  8. Brand Expansion 
  9. New Collections and Campaigns
  10. The Style
  11. Recent Years 
  12. Current Situation

The Origins

In 1835, at the age of fourteen, Louis Vuitton left Anchay, his native village in the Jura Mountains of eastern France, close to the Swiss border. He undertook this long journey by foot, ending up in Paris two years later. Upon his arrival, he was hired as a box maker/packer by Romain Maréchal. This work was based on manufacturing boxes and crates used to pack everyday objects and large wardrobes.

Mame Fashion Dictionary: Louis Vuitton Portrait
Louis Vuitton Portrait

First Boutique in Paris

In 1854 he opened his first leather goods store on rue Neuve-des-Capucines, Paris. He offered very light trunks in poplar wood and baggage more suitable for the new means of transport. Then, he began to attract the admiration of fashionable people. His designs were ergonomic, made for strength, and lightness. His perfection of the flat trunk is now considered the beginning of modern luggage.

Beginning in 1859, the Asnières site, both a family residence and workshop of the company, is born. Still today, Asnières is a symbol of the Vuitton family’s personal and commercial success.

Mame Fashion Dictionary: Louis Vuitton Historical Workshop Asnieres
Louis Vuitton Historical Workshop Asnieres

His skill is noted by Empress Eugenia of Montijo, who calls him to make his luggage. This experience helped him to understand that the old luggage used during the time of horse and bugee, with a curved form cover, had become useless obsolete. So, they decided on a modern type of luggage, which could be used in the trains, the new way of transport

Son Georges & Grandson Gaston

Louis Vuitton continuously innovates fabrics and patterns to protect the products from counterfeiting. In 1875, the creation of the first vertical wardrobe trunk, with each part being thoughtfully designed, guaranteed the success of a company already specializing in travel.

Mame Fashion Dictionary: Louis Vuitton the Tumbler Lock
The Tumbler Lock

In 1886, Georges Vuitton, created the tumbler lock, an ingenious closing system. A major invention that allowed the same customer to open each piece of luggage with a single key. Later, in 1888, the Damier Canvas pattern is introduced and trademarked. Tragically, in 1892, Louis Vuitton sadly passes away and his son Georges officially takes over the company, along with his grandson Gaston-Louis.

The Monogram Canvas is Born

In 1896, the birth of the famous Monogram canvas. Louis Vuitton’s son, Georges, created the “Monogram”, a small piece of cloth printed with the initials LV that guaranteed the originality of the product. Also, he patented waxed cloth bags, like the “steamer bag.” Louis Vuitton’s grandson, Gatson, began to collect travel items and old luggage dating back to the 16th century. These pieces are now part of the collections at Musée des Arts Décoratifs de Paris.

Mame Fashion Dictionary: Louis Vuitton Monogram Print Luggage
Monogram Print Luggage

Personalized Luggage

Members of the aristocracy and royalty never traveled without their own special Louis Vuitton trunks and cases, for example, the Prince of Egypt Youssouf Kemal, and the Sultan Ismaïl Pacha.

Mame Fashion Dictionary: Louis Vuitton Wardrobe TrunkWardrobe Trunk

For Luigi Barzini and Scipione Borghese who, in 1907, organized the Beijing-Paris car race, the maison designed rainproof cases. The trunk of the explorer Savorgnan de Brazza could even contain a camp bed, and the one made for the opera singer Lily Pons could hold 36 pairs of shoes. The trunk designed for the orchestra conductor Léopold Stokowski contained a little desk with a small table and shelves for books and music.

Mame Fashion Dictionary: Louis Vuitton Trunk Leopold Stokowski
Louis Vuitton Trunk Leopold Stokowski

In 1914 Georges Vuitton unveiled a shop along the Champs Élysées in an Art Nouveau palace that became the symbolic store of the maison. Through this time the brand grew into pure luxury and in 1983 Louis Vuitton began to sponsor one of the most famous and prestigious sailing competitions.

Louis Vuitton Merges with Moët-Hennessy

Since 1959, the company’s production has expanded to include a line of bags, small leather goods, and accessories. In 1987 the company Louis Vuitton merged with Moët-Hennessy to become the colossal multinational company LVMH. Its first important acquirement came the following year: The Maison Givenchy. Bernard Arnault, in 1989, became president and starting in 1993, LVMH started acquiring diverse fashion houses Christian Lacroix, Emilio Pucci, Kenzo, Fendi, Michael Kors, and Donna Karan.

Mame Fashion Dictionary: 100 Year Anniversary Bag, Romeo Gigli
100 Year Anniversary Bag, Romeo Gigli

In 1996 the brand celebrates the 100-year anniversary. So, the son of Louis Vuitton, Georges Vuitton, engaged the most celebrated and esteemed fashion designers; Azzedine Alaïa, Manolo Blahnik, Helmut Lang, Isaac Mizrahi, Romeo Gigli, Vivienne Westwood, and Sybilla to create a limited edition of various iconic pieces from the house of fashion.

First Artistic Director: Marc Jacobs

In 1998 the artistic director of the brand became Marc Jacobs, who launched in his first year the first prêt-à-porter apparel line. In the same year, the company launched a “City Guide” line of luxury travel guides in the major cities of the world; Berlin, Athens, London, Moscow, Rome and Paris.

Mame Fashion Dictionary: Louis Vuitton Creative Director Marc Jacobs
Creative Director Marc Jacobs

The following year, the men’s line was introduced. Marc Jacobs work consisted in revitalizing the brand, instilling an aspect of fashion that was new. Fundamental steps in this direction were the collaborations with artists like Stephen Sprouse and Takashi Murakami that reworked the classic LV logo redecorating it with glaring modifications. Thanks as well to the advertising campaigns that used celebrities like Madonna and Jennifer Lopez, the brand was able to become an inspiration in the eyes of a public ranging from 20 to 70 years old.

Mame Fashion Dictionary: Louis Vuitton City GuidesLouis Vuitton City Guides

Brand Expansion

Megastores were opened in London, New York and in 2000 a flagship store in Hong Kong. In 2002 Louis Vuttion registered a turnover of €4,194 million and operating results of €1,297 millions. All markets grew: Europe (+8%), USA (+12%), Japan (+15%). At the end of the year there were 299 own-brand shops. Of these, 7 were new: 1 each in Tokyo, Kobe, Osaka, Moscow, Amsterdam, Macao, and Germany, the restyled and reorganized stores numbered about 30.

Mame Fashion Dictionary: Louis Vuitton Shanghai Store
Louis Vuitton Shanghai Store

In December 2002 Yves Carcelle became the president of Louis Vuitton. By 2003, the company sold goods in 50 countries exclusively through more than 300 boutiques of its own property. By April, Louis Vuitton opened its first shop in New Delhi, India. Later, in September 2004, the Shanghai store, the largest store in the Asia-Pacific area, was restyled. Louis Vuitton had 13 shops in China. At this point, Louis Vuitton was arriving in South Africa and India. Serge Brunschwig, head of South-East Asia sector says,

“The future markets are India and South Africa. We are preparing big marketing operations and the opening of stores. In this way we create an emotional impact and start to introduce the Louis Vuitton universe into the luxury niches of new consumer markets.”

Overall, the brand has 335 own-brand, own- property stores all over the world. “To mark the company’s 150 years, we have accelerated the expansion project with 21 new openings, from the New York Building on the Fifth Avenue in Manhattan, to Osaka and Shanghai.”

New Collections & Campaigns

In the 2005 campaign, the actress Uma Thurman became Louis Vuitton’s new testimonial. Later, in July, the diversification process of the French brand continued. After a line of jewelry was launched, Louis Vuitton eyewear (sunglasses) made their appearance. Zeiss is the chosen partner to produce high protection lenses.

Mame Fashion Dictionary: Louis Vuitton Uma Thurman Campaign
Uma Thurman Campaign

Louis Vuitton launched new icon purses including one in Nomad Leather, a Monogram Mini Lin line, Damier Azur line, along with the new edition of the icon locks in 2006. The company published a book ‘Louis Vuitton, Icons’ by Edition Assouline. Also, new openings occurred with the Louis Vuitton House in Manhattan and Taiwan.

In 2007 The exhibition, Takashi Murakam, occurred along with a temporary opening of the Louis Vuitton boutique in a museum. This year also marked an iconic collaboration of Marc Jacobs and Richard Prince. The ‘Ultimate Travel Bag’ was created, and the Core Values Advertisement Campaign with Andre Agassi, Steffi Graf, Catherine Deneuve, and Mikhail Gorbachev debuted. This year also saw the opening of the first store in Cyprus, Greece.

Mame Fashion Dictionary: Louis Vuitton in Collaboration with Richard Prince
Collaboration with Richard Prince

In 2008 The Damier collection launched a new Graphite Damier line. Also, the company celebrates the 10th anniversary of the City Guides collection. Sofia Coppola is honored with a collection under her name that is launched in Tokyo. Stephen Sprouse in New York is celebrated with a tribute in his honor. In Auckland, New Zealand, the Louis Vuitton Pacific Series takes place. Another inauguration for the Takashi Murakami exhibition of Guggenheim Bilbao is admired.

The Style

Faithful to its heritage, Louis Vuitton has opened its doors to architects, artists and designers across the years. Also while developing disciplines such as ready-to-wear, shoes, accessories, watches, jewelry and stationery. These carefully created products are testament to the company’s commitment to fine craftsmanship.

Mame Fashion Dictionary: Louis Vuitton’ Craftsmanship
Louis Vuitton’ Craftsmanship

The success of the Louis Vuitton label is based on grand French style, which recognizes the beauty of an object in its function and mobility. Louis Vuitton has brought unique designs to the world, combining innovation with style, always aiming for the finest quality.

The commercial policy is based on exclusivity, especially to combat against the rising attempts at falsification. For this reason, the fashion house’s products can only be acquired in their single brand stores or online at their official website www.louisvuitton.com. The brand’s attention isn’t limited just to the fashion system: interested in new trends, Louis Vuitton runs a cultural space at 101 Champs Élysées where young artists are left to propose and promote their art.

Recent Years

In 2010 Louis Vuitton published the book 100 Malles de Légende, a work that traces the story of the maison through a photographic support of more than 800 shots.

Mame Fashion Dictionary: Louis Vuitton 100 Malles De Légende
100 Malles De Légende

In February 2011, the first app of Louis Vuitton was launched, following the collaboration of the brand with Apple. “Look at the world through the eyes of Louis Vuitton”, the brand’s motto that they presented to refined travelers from every corner of the world. Vuitton’s success was unstoppable. Also, their campaign, “City Guide,” the line of luxury travel guides, updated a 2011 edition with new and unexpected cities like Porto Cervo, Beirut, Courchevel, Gstaad, Oxford, Palma de Mallorca and Thessaloniki.

Mame Fashion Dictionary: Louis Vuitton Nicolas Ghesquiere
Nicolas Ghesquiere

2014 is another turning point, when Marc Jacobs, the creative director of the maison, is replaced by Nicolas Ghesquière, the French fashion designer discovered in 1997 by Balenciaga. The brand’s attention is not only directed at the fashion system: the interest in new trends has led the brand to open a cultural space on the Champs Élysées, where young artists have the opportunity to propose and promote their art.

Current Situation

Mame Fashion Dictionary: Louis Vuitton Spring / Summer 2017 Runway
Spring / Summer 2017 Runway

Louis Vuitton, in 2016 has an estimated $ 20 billion value, and is at number 19 of Forbes’ list of the 100 most prestigious brands in the world.

Today, the Maison remains faithful to the spirit of its founder, Louis Vuitton, who invented a genuine “Art of Travel” through luggage, bags and accessories which were as creative as they were elegant and practical. Since then, audacity has shaped the story of Louis Vuitton.

Currently, Nicolas Ghesquière remains the Creative Director of Women’s Collections. Also, Kim Jones remains the Creative Director of Men’s Collections.

RALPH LAUREN

Ralph Lauren is an American brand founded in 1967 by fashion designer, Ralph Lauren. They produce and market: apparel, home, accessories, and fragrances.

Index

  1. The Origins
  2. First Collection
  3. The Style
  4. Expansion of the Brand
  5. Ralph Lauren in the Cinema
  6. Awards & Donations
  7. The Financial Situation
  8. The Recent Year’s

The Origins

Ralph Lipschitz (1939). American designer, born in Bronx, New York. Since his childhood, Ralph Lauren, had shown great passion and love towards the industry of fashion, which supported his career’s paths. He learned the profession by working in the field between 1956 and 1966. His job titles include shop assistant, buyer, and agent in several department stores in New York, including the Alexander stores, Allied stores, Bloomingdale’s, Brooks Brothers, and Rivetz in Boston. Also, he took evening courses in business management at City College in New York.

Mame Fashion Dictionary: Ralph Lauren 1971 Working is his Office
Ralph Lauren (1971) Working is his Office

First Collection

In 1967 designed and handmade a professional tie collection. He innovated the wide tie style, named “Polo” for Beau Brummel. The collection was a huge success and a year later he established the independent brand, Polo by Ralph Lauren, which made its début with a tailored menswear collection.

Mame Fashion Dictionary: Ralph Lauren First Tie Collection Style
Ralph Lauren First Tie Collection Style

The Style

Since starting out, his style has interpreted the past with a touch of romanticism, blending the traditions of the English aristocracy, above all, the impeccable Duke of Windsor, with the stars of old Hollywood, such as Cary Grant and Fred Astaire. Also, he designs with thoughts such as sports, African safaris, and vacations in New England. Ralph Lauren was able to expand his design to a full menswear line, and was awarded the City Award for his men’s designs. His style was highly influenced by his dream of living as an American high ivy-league society where classic, elegant, and a smart look were most important.

He says: “My purpose in fashion is to achieve the dream of dreams: the most beautiful reality that one can imagine.”

In this manner he has created a style that is by now recognized as typically American. His style is appreciated all over the world by those looking for a slice of the American Dream.

Expansion of the Brand

In 1971 he launched his first womenswear collection and introduced the famous logo of the polo player into knitwear. That same year, Lauren opened his first boutique in Beverly Hills, and a corner space in Bloomingdale’s, New York. The first international store opened in London in 1981 and by then there were about 100 around the world. The New York showroom in the former Rhinelander mansion in Madison Avenue opened in 1986. The store mirrors his way of thinking about fashion and life, proposing an eternal elegance and a very high, timeless quality.

Mame Fashion Dictionary: Ralph Lauren First Collection of Fitted Shirt's
Ralph Lauren First Collection of Fitted Shirt’s

By the 1990s, Ralph Lauren had about 20 clothing lines for men, women, teenagers, and children. Also, several fragrances and the line of household items are successful. Several lines of accessories are produced under license.

Ralph Lauren in the Cinema

He has also designed several costumes for the cinema. In 1973 he clothed Robert Redford in the movie version of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby. In 1977 he launched a new fashion when he dressed Diane Keaton in men’s clothes in Woody Allen’s Annie Hall: jackets and pants in soft tweeds, shirt and tie, waistcoat and felt hats, everything assembled in a totally new ironic and sensual way. The success did not stop but was continuously built with extending products such as fragrance in 1978 up until today and different lines such as of Polo Sport in 1992, Purple Label in 1995, and Lauren Ralph Lauren in 1996. Ralph Lauren did not stop there, he also started reaching out different market such as restaurants and bars that were opened in 1999 at Chicago and other major places in the coming years such as Paris (2010) and New York (2015).

Mame Fashion Dictionary: Ralph Lauren Dressed Diane Keaton in Annie Hall
Mame Fashion Dictionary: Ralph Lauren Dressed Diane Keaton in Annie Hall (Photo by Moviestore Collection)

Awards & Donations

The list of prizes and awards he has won is extremely long, including an ad honorem degree in Classical Literature from Brandeis University in 1996. Also, some of his creations are in the permanent collection of New York’s Fashion Institute. Later, in 1983 a retrospective of his work was held in the Denver Art Museum in Colorado. Over the years he made significant donations to humanitarian causes, for example, research into cancer and Aids. In 1998 he offered $13 million for the restoration of the first American flag, the original star-spangled banner. The company was quoted on the New York Stock Exchange in 1997. Two years later Ralph Lauren bought Club Monaco, Canadian traders in retail fashion, for $52.5 million, making its own name as one of the international powers in the field of prêt-à-porter.

In January of 2000, the American company bought the licensee company for Europe, Poloco of Paris, for $200 million. Also, with the development of technology, Ralph Lauren kept his positioning by launching official web site in 2000. In August 2001, Lillian Wang von Stauffenberg and Lauren DuPont became the new designers for the women’s collection.

During the first half of the year the company had a turnover of $898.3 million, an increase of 3.8% compared to 2000. Net profits amounted to $125.1 million. The multinational had 231 stores worldwide. In the United States sales represented 78.1% of the total; in Japan and Europe, respectively, 10% and 7.3%. The clothes and shoes bearing the Ralph Lauren brand name were mostly manufactured in Italy. As of 2001, global sales reached a level of $2.6 billion.

In 2001 the Polo Ralph Lauren Foundation was founded and for breast cancer awareness Ralph Lauren launched the Pink Pony initiative to help raise awareness. In the spring 2002 fashion show models were wearing the Pink Pony T-Shirt, which became a symbol of the campaign.

Mame Fashion Dictionary: Ralph Lauren Pink Pony Tee Spring 2002 Runway Show
Ralph Lauren Pink Pony Tee Spring 2002 Runway Show

The Financial Situation

February of 2002 For the first time the group presented its men’s collection in Milan, in its headquarters at 27 Via San Barnaba (designed by the architect Mino Fiocchi). It is an exact reproduction of the designer’s house. Later in December, after 25 years of a license agreement with Seibu, Ralph Lauren took back control in Japan, acquiring 50% of the company operating under the general license. The total investment amounted to $70 million.

Mame Fashion Dictionary: Ralph Lauren Flagship in Milan on 27 Via San Barnaba
Ralph Lauren Flagship in Milan on 27 Via San Barnaba

In January 2003 Ralph Lauren moved store locations in Milan and chose Via Montenapoleone for his first own-brand boutique in Milan. The store opened in Fall 2004. With more than 20 collections, 265 stores all over the world, and a retail value of $8 billion, Polo Ralph Lauren aimed at reaching, in the next five years, a turnover of $1 billion in the European continent alone.

The same year, the designer launches the Rugby line, a complete collection for teenagers aged 16 to 25. The line obviously inspires the same sport. In October, he opened his first Rugby store in Boston. In 2005, sales grew around 38%. There were notable increase in profits, especially in the third and the last quarter of 2004. And the new year begins with an increase of receipts, rising to $74.8 million, over the $35.4 million of the year before.

Mame Fashion Dictionary: Ralph Lauren Rugby Line
Ralph Lauren Rugby Line

In 2006, Ralph Lauren opened its largest shop in Omotesando, Tokyo, 2230 square meters of Ralph Lauren’s entire world show. In 2007, two single monarchs were opened in Moscow. In 2008, once again Ralph Lauren is confirmed as the official sponsor of Wimbledon, the most exclusive tennis tournament in the world, and dedicates a collection to this event.

The Recent Year’s

To enrich the brand luxury positioning they underwent several collaborations and brand extensions. In 2007 Ralph Lauren decided to reach the industry of jewelry and accessories by partnering with Swiss Luxury Goods Group and the partnership still exists today.  Another partnering was with J.C. Penney for launching American Living for Ralph Lauren home collection. However, this collaboration did not last long and ended by 2012. Also, Ralph Lauren opened the sophisticated line called Black Label in 2009 and then reaching out the kid’s section through the “Pink Pony” collection in the same year as well. For the women’s line, in 2010, the brand started to launch the line Lauren’s Handbags and Accessories. Later, in 2012 the Rugby line, which started in 2005, is officially discontinued.

The latest highlight was the Ricky Bag in 2016, which was inspired from his wife. The bag had a discreet rechargeable battery to power the internal LED light and also a USB port to charge mobile devices. Due to the unique design, this collection also was exhibited at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.

Mame Fashion Dictionary: Ralph Lauren Ricky Bag
the Iconic Ricky Bag

At the end of 2015, Ralph Lauren officially stepped down as CEO, but will remain executive chairman and chief creative director. Stefan Larsson, a Swedish born previous executive of Old Navy and Gap, took Lauren’s position as CEO. Unfortunately, after a year, Larsson stepped down after a disagreement with Lauren on how to revive the brand in the new era. Currently, Ralph Lauren is looking for a CEO.

Through the year Ralph Lauren never stopped envisioning future. In 2016 during New York fashion week they partnered with Periscope, Twitter’s livestream app, creating the first livestream of the luxury’s runway show in Manhattan and streamed on a billboard in London’s Piccadilly Circus and @RalphLauren Periscope account. With continuous expansion of stores and products’ development, Ralph Lauren currently has more than 500 directly operated stores worldwide and international licensing partners around the world.

Mame Fashion Dictionary: Ralph Lauren Current 2017 Campaign
Current 2017 Campaign

Since the brand’s early age, it has been trusted to become the official outfitter of U.S. Olympic Team for almost every season of the competitions. He has also designed suits for government officials. In the 2016 US elections he designed outfits for both Democrats and Republicans during the campaign and inauguration.

CHRISTIAN LOUBOUTIN

Christian Louboutin, French shoe designer, was born in Paris 1964. His iconic element is the high-end stiletto, with the red sole.

Christian Louboutin, designer of the world’s most iconic red sole stiletto.

Index

  1. Young Rebel
  2. The Launch
  3. Louboutin Red
  4. Brand Expansion
  5. Current Situation

Young Rebel

Christian Louboutin, French shoe designer, was born in Paris 1964. His iconic element is the high-end stiletto, with the red sole. At the age of 12 his true fascination with shoes began when he visited the Musée National des Arts d’Afrique et d’Océanie, where he saw a sign forbidding women wearing sharp stilettos from entering a building, for fear of damage to the wood flooring. This image inspired his work.

Christian expresses, “I wanted to create something that broke rules and made women feel confident and empowered.”

He studied drawing and decorative arts at the Académie d’Art Roederer. In his teens he left for Egypt, and spent a year in India. After this he came back to Paris in 1981. He created a portfolio full of his extravagant high heel drawings and sent it to the top fashion houses. This was a success, and he was hired by Charles Jourdan, one of the most respected shoemakers in Paris. Through his work with Jourdan, he met Roger Vivier, who claimed to have invented the stiletto, and they started a long and meaningful collaboration. Also, he freelanced for Chanel and Yves Saint Laurent.

Christian Louboutin Portrait
Christian Louboutin Portrait

The Launch

In the late 80’s he left fashion, became a landscape gardener, and contributed to Vogue Paris. This only lasted a few years before he started to miss working with shoes, and decided to launch his company in 1991. His first collection was presented in 1991, then in 1992 he opened a boutique on Rue Rousseau in Paris. Princess Caroline of Monaco was his first customer. She complemented the store when a journalist was present and he published her comments, which helped Louboutin gain recognition. After this, clients such as Diane Von FurstenbergMadonna, Nicole Kidman, Cher, and Carolyn Bessette-Kennedy soon followed.

Louboutin Red

The Louboutin signature is the red sole, first created in 1993. He claimed he was trying to liven up the design of his shoes, when he “spontaneously grabbed his assistants red nail polish and started painting the sole red.” He exclaimed, “I instantly knew that it would be a success.” Through the 90’s and 2000’s Louboutin brought back the popularity of the stiletto, and in 1998 he received the Fashion Footwear Association of New York Award for the best shoe designer of the year.

Mame Fashion Dictionary: Christian Louboutin. Iconic Red Sole Stiletto.
Iconic Red Sole Stiletto.

Brand Expansion

In 2003 he extended outside of shoes and launched his first collection of handbags. Then, in 2011 he launched his first men’s line.

Since the brand’s launch, Christian Louboutin’s creations have been immortalized in museums, on fashion week runways, red carpets, and in pop culture around the world. A woman’s natural beauty has always been at the center of the designer’s inspiration. 2014 welcomed the launch of Christian Louboutin Beauté with its first nail polish, Rouge Louboutin, accompanied by a full range of Noirs, Nudes and Pop colors. The brand’s highly anticipated ‘second chapter’ of beauty, lipstick, launched in September 2015, followed by three signature Christian Louboutin fragrances in September 2016 and a striking collection of eye amplifiers, Les Yeux Noirs, in March 2017.

Mame Fashion Dictionary: Christian Louboutin. The Beauty Collection: Lipstick, Nail Polish, and Perfume.
The Beauty Collection: Lipstick, Nail Polish, and Perfume.

Current Situation

With a prolific collection of women’s and men’s shoes, day and evening handbags, and small leather goods Christian Louboutin now counts more than one hundred boutiques around the world. Also, there are several locations dedicated to men’s and a one-of-a-kind beauty boutique located in the heart of Paris’ 1st arrondisment, just two doors away from 19 Jean-Jacques Rousseau.

Christian Louboutin Paris Store
Christian Louboutin Paris Store

Salva

Salva

Salva

Salva

Lahrer

Félix (1971). French photographer. He started his career during a stay in London from 1994 to 1997, collaborating with magazines such as Wad, Vogue, Jalouse, Parso, Town and Spoon, Tetu and Vogue France. He became interested in cinema and directs films dominated by ironic atmospheres such as Claudia’s Dream in 2001 (where he imagines Claudia Shiffer flirting with giant puppets of King Kong and the Pink Panther) and Barbie Killer in Playland in 2002. He has also had two solo exhibitions. He lives and works in London and Paris.

Lacroix

Christian (1951). French designer. Lacroix burst onto the scene in the early 1980s with a brand new silhouette — the pouf skirt — and new source of inspiration, his hometown of Arles, in the Provence region of southern France, whose colors and design traditions continue to infuse his creations today. He studied art history at the University of Montpellier and moved to Paris in 1973, where he initially began studies to become a museum curator. He started designing fashions instead, encouraged by long-time business partner and friend Jean-Jacques Picart, and worked as an assistant both at Hermès and to designer Guy Paulin. In 1981 he was hired by the somewhat flailing couture house of Patou, and revived their couture business almost overnight with a show that turned him into a fashion star, and introduced the world to his bold mix of pattern, Provencal inspirations and joyful approach to color. He set up his own couture house in 1987, and in 1988 designed a ready-to-wear collection produced by Genny, the Ancona-based firm. Since then he has launched a number of secondary lines, including Bazar, a jeans line, a wedding division, perfumes and home accessories. He won the prestigious French design award, the Dé d’Or, in 1986 and 1988. He has also developed a long and much acclaimed career designing costumes for theater and the opera. A lover of flamboyancy and theatricality, Lacroix brings a unique sensuality, joy and opulence to the couture and all his designs.
&Quad;2001. His fashion house is acquired by the French group LVMH.
&Quad;2002, April. Lacroix is named artistic director of Emilio Pucci.
&Quad;2002, June. Bazar Enfant, a line for children, is launched.
&Quad;2002, October. He participates in The Fur Show Beijing 2002, presenting a line of fanciful furs.
&Quad;2003, April. He signs an agreement with the French company Sil for the production and distribution of the first Lacroix underwear line, launched in Summer 2004.
&Quad;2003, May. Lacroix takes part in the My Favorite Dress exhibition to celebrate the opening of the Fashion & Textile Museum of London.
&Quad;2003, June. Lacroix makes his menswear début.