Last week I gave you some good examples to explain fashion endorsements and how they work. But these can occasionally go wrong. This was Burberry's case. In 2005, the British supermodel Kate Moss had been chosen to head up a promotional campaign for the brand, when she made headlines following allegations of drug abuse. Fearful of the adverse publicity, Burberry terminated her contract. Soon after H&M and Chanel followed and severed all links with Moss. (The model's celebrity status quickly recovered and now she's on the top of her career).
As certain brands continue with their celebrity policy, other choose to stay away from the culture in which they believe fashion has become more about the celebrity than the clothes themselves. The late British designer Alexander McQueen was outspoken on this subject; in 2007 he told US Harper's Bazaar: "I can't get sucked into that celebrity thing because I think it's just crass. I work with people who I admire and respect. It's never because of who they are. It's not about celebrity; that would show a lack of respect for the work, for everything working on the show, because when the pictures come out it's all about who's in the front row. What you see in the work is the person itself. And my heart is in my work."
However, the likes of Dolce & Gabbana, Giorgio Armani, Versace, and other of a similar ilk have built their brand identities firmly around Hollywood's A-listers and continue to woo celebrities. Often the front-row seats of their catwalk shows are studded with celebrities, which works as an endorsement in itself. Lesser labels have also followed suit, trying to attract celebrities in the hopes of attracting media coverage and driving up sales.
Once upon a time, the front row was made up of fashion press, influential editors, and international buyers-how things have changed.
Have a great weekend!