Fashion brands can do stunts and PR tricks to their hearts content at events like fashion week, no matter where the venue. But if their fashion isn’t up to speed, nothing will save them. So, assuming your brand has the great fashion down pat, what next? How do you stand out in a sea of other designers who also have great fashion built into their show? Here are ideas that have worked for other brands.
Avant Garde Accessories
This year’s show for Givenchy had large nose rings that in many cases looked like high fashion stick on mustaches. They also included what looked like large face piercing pieces and intricately styled wisps of hair framing the face in a kind of gingerbread architectural detail. Models faces appeared similar to Italian opera puppets. But the dresses were long and elegant. If you go Avant garde, contrast is your friend. If you do this well, your PR people have plenty of material to work from for month to come.
Pops of Color
In the fall Fashion Shows, you usually see a lot of dark fabrics, grays, blacks, navies all feature prominently. So a little flash of color now and then makes all those dark colors stand out. If you make one of your most beautiful works in that pop of color, people will talk about your stunning collection long after the week has passed. Zac Posen’s show did this with a stunningly simple red mid-calf length dress worn with a scarf and sunglasses rimmed in the same red. The look was timeless, a walk in Manhattan today or Audrey Hepburn in the 1950s in Paris – either way, the collection became memorable with that one piece.
Build a Theme
Your theme might cover one season, or several, like Dolce and Gabbana over the last several seasons. D&G chose a particular season in a woman’s life and created fashion, and their show, around that. Last year, it was about the maturing woman, this year it was all about young mothers. And they carried that to the point of putting together a nursery backstage where the mommy models could play with their children and infants, or even take a moment to breastfeed a baby before strutting the runway. For Marc Jacobs this year, he created a number of different pleated leather skirts in varying lengths. Pleats were so prevalent in his collection, they became a theme. Imagine building a PR campaign for his brand all around pleats and what you can do with them.
Runway shows usually like to keep their secrets until the show happens, but PR still works at the show and other events that follow. Marc Jacobs could have given pleated gift bags with different branded items either folded in pleats, styled around them, or even a new designer fragrance named “Pleats.” The more designers have a unique branding voice with their product, the more a PR and advertising campaign can be created to showcase them. What fashion week designer would you like to design a campaign for at the Spring shows?
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