A curiously abstract future has been germinating among French luxury brands and institutions of Comité Colbert through a series of cryptic social media posts. It is “a utopia created by french luxury” called “Dreaming 2074”, culminating in a collection of science-fiction short stories, new vocabulary and music, which can be downloaded at www.dreaming2074.com
To back up a few steps, Comité Colbert, founded in 1954 by Jean-Jacques Guerlain, is an organization made up of 78 luxury houses and 14 cultural institutions in France to promote the concept of French luxury. Brands such as Cartier, Mellerio dits Meller, Veuve Clicquot, Lanvin, Givenchy, Guerlain and the Louvre (just to name a few) were part of this collaboration. The essence of the collective project “Rêver2074” (Dream2074) is designed to share, preserve and celebrate 60 years of French luxury and heritage… and live into and lead an inspiring future.
High Jewelry brands continue to embrace social media platforms – even new launching collections on Instagram. While core clients will remain long-time loyal collectors, jewelers intentions are to reach a new, younger audience that may be more tech savvy. Luxury brands (of any kind) will do well to be innovative and engaging with globally mobile future clients: hello “HENRYs“!
Of note are two recent high jewellery collection launches by Van Cleef & Arpels and Bulgari.
On June 24th, Van Cleef & Arpels released a short, charming video on Instagram announcing an unveiling. Next was a series with a single gemstone, followed by imagery in white paper of a palace, king and queen, and butterflies, which announced that a fairytale collection would be revealed the next day. Facebook and Twitter were employed to share the time of the grand occasion. A film still of a young Catherine Deneuve from Jaques Demy’s “Peau d’Âne” was released on June 27th, as it was the inspiration behind the new collection. Van Cleef & Arpels then shared an image of Chateau de Chambord, where the collection would be presented at a special event. Followers were then treated to a continual feed of the festivities, with glimpses of the jewelry throughout the magical evening.
Similarly, Bulgari revealed on July 1st that their latest high jewelry collection would be revealed during Parisian Haute Couture week. As this year is their 130th anniversary, they set out to celebrate its past with initiatives that will lead the brand into the future. One such initiative is a project to restore Rome’s cherished Spanish Steps, following private investment to help maintain heritage monuments throughout Italy. With the intention to be perceived as innovative as well as a revered established brand, Bulgari began posting closely cropped details of a few pieces from the collection. In the hours leading up to the launch event on July 8th, behind-the-scenes images were shared, followed by images of the event and the collection being enjoyed and admired by those in attendance.
Among the dynamic videos from fashion and luxury brands in Q1, for me Mr. Porter steals the show.
While the intro could easily be compressed, the charm of “The Style Clinic Show” host, retro staging and format for featuring the looks are both entertaining, richly informative and wonderfully “shoppable”. The host cheekily narrates style variations on specific wardrobe needs, while the model rotates to capture the look from various angles. Also noteworthy is the 3-way cut of the frame, so that details of fabric and finishings are highlighted.
By contrast, the thing that challenges me most when viewing brand videos is dark lighting and immersive abstraction. While there is appreciation for conceptual, artistic nature of such things, often there is little attention shown on craft. There is a way to balance both while preserving those inspirational qualities that are innate to a brand’s narrative. Mr. Porter has executed this well in the past and continues to do so.
Finally, the series encourages engagement: if you are in need of style help, you can contact: firstname.lastname@example.org or tweet: #styleclinic
Meantime, definitely do yourself a favor and take in the Mr. Porter charm.