Rewop: a new fashion essential.

Rewop-Logo-04

Eyewear is perhaps the most important piece of fashion accessory that one can own, It can change the look and the impression that you project to the world instantly and effectively.

I was at the “White” Fair during the Fashion Week in Milan and I discovered a very new special brand: REWOP.

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“The only thing we have changed is the way to see something”

This is the “motto” of Rewop, name that comes from the anagram of Power, to underline Strength, freshness and dynamicity, that characterize the brand. The energy indicated by the word evokes a young man with bold behaviour looking to conquer respect and admiration. Rewop is a return to that audacity that defines the target: men and women who are very self confident, lovers of freshness and that want a high quality “Made in Italy” product.

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Rewop is an emerging brand that offers, with it’s eyewear collection, a very modern and young product, personality underliner, style magnifier and indispensable accessory. One of Rewop main strengths is to highlight and enhance the value of the eyes without losing UV protection.

Rewop offers lenses that can adapt to any light without hiding the look and expression. The frame of Rewop glasses is made by Mazzucchelli, international plastic leader, using innovative materials, impalpably light and strong.

They have three main styles called: “Capri”, “Panarea” and “Ponza”.

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While I was there I took the opportunity to interview the sales and marketing director of the brand, Francesco Zeni, who gave me more information about these sunglasses.

How did “Rewop” start?

Rewop started with the idea of four young men from Milan, who wanted to develop something innovative and to prove to the world, and to theirselves, that also here in Italy you can create a new entrepreneurial activity.

How the idea of this collection was born?

We started to develop this idea after a long research; we attended several international eyewear fairs like the MIDO in Milan, where we found the right producers with the right styles, in line with the target we had in mind.

Can you talk about your new collection?

We have three main styles for this collection.

The first one is “Capri”, that takes its name from the beautiful island overlooking the bay of Naples, heaven on earth. For its elegant and sharp shapes it has inspired our last model, in 3 words: sleek, cool and fashion. For those who are not afraid to show their personality.

Then we have the “Panarea”, its innovative lenses protects your eyes without hiding them, with a stand-out look. Its bold style appeals to sporty profiles, and is perfectly combined with class and elegance, making it a versatile product which can also be adapted as optical frames.

Then, last but not least, we have the “Ponza”, it has a rounded style that garantee a more serious touch without taking away the originality. Elegant and fresh, it shows the willingness to be different even as reading glasses.

What inspired you?

We worked closely with our designers in order to adapt the existing styles to our concepts. In particular, in the “Capri” style we developed the design from scratch, we took inspiration from an old French brand, no longer in production, and we recreated a very famous style of the 60s.

Are you only in Italy? Are you planning to enlarge you market?

At the moment we are present in Italy, Spain and Japan and had already made deals with Australia, USA, South Korea and China.

Are you willing to enlarge your collection?

We decided to keep “Panarea”, “Capri” and “Ponza” as a permanent collection, but we are also planning to add another permanent one called “Vulcano”, then in the future we are thinking about creating some limited seasonal editions.

What are your plans for the future?

Our future objective is to expand ourselves in the international market because the Italian market is smaller than the potential of the international importing market like Usa, Australia and Japan so our future idea is to find some important distributing companies in these countries.

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I really suggest you to visit their website, because what they have done is to let their products speak for themselves!

Congratulations Guys!

Sofia Cozzi

http://www.rewopmilano.com

 

Fresh Dressed: Dapper Dan’s Boutique

Daniel Day AKA Dapper Dan was born in the 1950s in Harlem, New York. He grew up wearing rags with three older brothers and a group of cousins who were already well on their way to a life of crime. All around him, appearance was important, and when you live in the pits it is one of the only ways to still look like a million dollar man.

dapperdanfur-1.jpgDapper Dan (1984)

Dap opened a shop with his name in 1983, at 43 East 125th Street, where he made furs and always sold them cheaper than the market price.

His uptown clientele was a heady mix of hustlers, street cats, and hip-hop royalty, all of whom shared a mutual love of what Dan himself called a “macho type of ethnic ghetto clothing”.

His margins were small, but sales volumes made up the difference and business was booming. His customers were all competing to get the freshest coat, and Dan started thinking about how to sate their appetite for luxury.  In the 1980s luxury brands targets were the highest and sophisticated part of society, while Dap brought to light the concept of luxurious street-wear aimed to reach who was excluded before.

boutique-1-n47szhp7qj4kspm863zxwpz0h9erik7q9kaxwwqnpk.jpgDapper Dan’s boutique in Harlem (1984)

He started by buying up stocks of Gucci and Louis Vuitton bags, cutting them up to use the monogrammed leather in his own creations. It was fabulous and horribly expensive, but the Harlem hustlers had bottomless pockets when it came to showing off their success.

Dan’s creations were Harlem certified, blends of Louis Vuitton, Gucci, Fendi, and MCM, with mixtures of mink, ostrich, crocodile and python. A true example of taking back fashion by pulling it closer to surrealist prêt-à-porter. Dapper Dan managed to rework luxury brands’ codes to bring them back to the street with disruptive creativity, even becoming as famous as the brands themselves in certain circles.

Before the likes of Kanye West and Rihanna were doing it, Dapper Dan was the first to bring designer fashion into the context of street culture. Dubbed “Hip Hop’s fashion godfather” who “planted the seed for fashion” in the music genre, his clients list included everyone: from Harlem hustlers to the likes of Run DMC, Mike Tyson, Salt and Pepa, LL Cool J and Bobby Brown, who would spend hours at his store which stayed open all night and day for 8 years.

dapper-dan-web-feature-llkoolj.jpgDapper Dan with LL Cool J wearing a custom Gucci jacket.

dappdanfatboys.jpgFat Boys in Dapper Dan’s Louis Vuitton jackets.

In 1988, two of Dapper Dan’s clients, boxers Mike Tyson and Mitch Green crossed paths upon entering and leaving the Harlem boutique at 5 in the morning. The encounter resulted in an almighty fight that hit headlines everywhere and landed Dan’s boutique with some unwanted publicity. As a result of the exposure, the brands that had refused to sell Dan their wares for his street boutique, Louis Vuitton, Gucci and Fendi, all sued him.

16-MIKE-TYSOB.jpgMike Tyson with his custom made jacket “Don’t believe the hype”.

While it is no surprise that the designer brands objected to Dapper Dan’s use of their logos during the rise of Harlem’s crack era, it is still worth recognizing that what Dapper Dan did was a totally original re-imagination of style.

dapper-dan-web-feature-air-force-1.jpgVintage Dapper Dan X LV Nike Air Force 1.

dapperdanlvjackets.jpgPeople in Harlem in the 1990s.

o3thh5enjdodolf2jlbn.jpgJam Master Jay in 1986 in Dapper Dan from head-to-toe.

Dapper Dan was forced to close its doors in 1992. After the closing of the boutique, Dap continued work for private clients throughout the United States. The conscious hip-hop fans will surely have noticed his work. In 2001, at the Grammy Awards ceremony, Nelly showed up wearing a Louis Vuitton’ sport coat and leather pants with matching logos. In Let’s Get It” a music video that popularized the original dance “Harlem Shake”, Sean “Diddy” Combs and other rappers wear Fendi dresses that have the distinct look of 125th Street.

dapper-dan-web-feature-portrait.jpgDapper Dan in Harlem (2012).

Today, Dapper Dan, that is approaching 70 years old, even though he never confirmed his age exactly, is pretty trim to pull off what he would wear in his 20s,  and does not believe there is a way to dress up for ages. Everything depends on the encounter that you will have and the impression you want to make. Today Dap met artists and designers such as Pharrell Williams and Kanye West at the Fashion Weeks to discuss with them the value of the revolutionary style.

Credit blog.dapperdanofharlem.com

Michele Di Stefano

 

Why always Gucci?

You don’t need to be a fashion victim to notice that Gucci is the brand of the moment, I would say, again. With many pieces sold out and some must-have products, the Florentine firm is leading the fashion world and everyone is looking at it.

But success always comes after a period of bleeding. Back in 2006, under the creative direction of Frida Giannini, Gucci became known for its strong product focus and began to lose its creed and so this began to impact revenues. Quarterly sales growth began to slow in the second half of 2013 and, by December 2014, after years of profitable growth, Gucci had experienced three consecutive quarters of declining sales according to “Business of Fashion”.

The first most important change was the CEO. In December 2014, Marco Bizzarri was settling into a new role as head of the Luxury Couture & Leather Goods division of Kering, overseeing a group of prestigious brands including Bottega Veneta, Yves Saint Laurent, Alexander McQueen, Stella McCartney, and Brioni. Then, Kering Chairman and chief executive Francois-Henri Pinault asked him to take on the role as president and CEO of Gucci. The first action of the new CEO was to choose a new creative director, Alessandro Michele, Frida Giannini’s assistant.

Since that moment, a new story of Gucci started. Thanks to his experience in different companies, such as Fendi, the designer aims to develop a particular storytelling, partly detached from the one presented along the years by Frida Giannini. This is the reason why consumers and fashion insiders thought at the beginning they were looking at a new brand.

But nothing happens for chance. Many people say Alessandro Michele is creating his own brand inside Gucci and when he will leave the company, it will face another period of chaos. However, the truth is that Michele is going deep into the “forgotten” heritage of the brand giving a new life to many stylistic codes that brought the firm to be worldwide known and recognizable.

If you visit the Gucci Museum, you can live and experience Gucci’s story since the beginning in the 20th century. Alessandro Michele himself contributes to the development of this beauty, for instance, with the creation of Tom Ford’s room that represented the new Gucci’s code of the 21th century, the most important Michele’s resources.

So, Why always Gucci?

The last collection is the result of this beautiful process: “Yet the title of the Gucci show
“The Alchemist’s Garden” — was fitting for a designer who, along with chief executive Marco Bizzarri, has turned the once-troubled Italian superbrand into pure gold for parent company Kering. In the fourth quarter of 2016, Gucci revenue grew 21 percent, almost twice as fast as analysts expected, an astonishing figure for a company of its size in a stagnant luxury market”.

Alessandro Michele is building a new chapter of Gucci, creating a long term relationship with customers thanks to his products in which “More is More”.

Gucci, cruise 2016.jpgImage courtesy: http://herbeauty.co

Fashion for Women’s empowerment

In this last period, more then ever, fashion is merging with politics. Worldwide designers, stilysts and bloggers are speaking through collections, social media and catwalks to give voice to their opinions. In particular nowdays, in response to the triumph of Donald Trump in the US presidential elections, fashion took a really hard position in favour of women’s rights. It is a matter of fact that Trump ran an election campaign based on low blows, chaos and marginalization and showed that even if we have taken great strides in terms of equal conditions between men and women, we still have a solid base of prejudices.
In this period fashion has had an important role because it is one of the most visibile industries on the market which is the reason why many designers are fighting to be the main promoters of this social issue trying to involve other people to be more engaged.

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To give an example, Prada was one of the most important labels that has always encouraged a vision of a powerfull and confident woman that has to be not only protected in terms of respected rights, but also celebrated in all its shapes.
Furthermore impossible to forget the first collection by Maria Grazia Chiuri made for Dior focused on feminist messages such as “We all should be feminists”. (Not only on March 8 I would add!)
Also the Vogue editors in chief Anna Wintour and Franca Sozzani always have argued for this critical topic through editorials and articles showing the importance of the female figures that day by day are making the history of our lifes. And like them, a lot of important personalities.
It seemed like a general trend common for all the brands, but someone made a slip-up…
I’m talking about Yves Saint Laurent, that recently has been accused of “degrading” models and “inciting rape” with the last ADV Campaign.

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One of the pictures showed a reclining woman opening her legs, while another one showed a model in a leotard and roller skate stilettos bending over a stool. The postures of the women presented as offered to someone behind the camera gave the idea of sexual submission and with the only purpose to shock public opinion.
These posters sparked outrage and they was banned by the “Autorite de Regulation Professionelle de la Publicite”. They asked to the brand to make changes to the visual content of the campaign in order to preserve the dignity of person that, in this case, was really understimated.

 If the goals of the French house Yve Saint Laurent was to swim against the tide, for sure that was not the right way.

Still no comments by the company… probably in this case it’s better to be silent.

References:
https://www.theguardian.com/media/2017/mar/08/saint-laurent-remove-degrading-posters-french-regulator-thin-models#img-2
https://www.theguardian.com/media/2017/mar/08/saint-laurent-remove-degrading-posters-french-regulator-thin-models#img-2
http://www.elleuk.com/life-and-culture/culture/news/a32731/womens-group-organises-anti-trump-strike-against-president-elect-trump/
http://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/fashion/features/domestic-violence-in-vogue-franca-sozzani-takes-a-stand-on-fashions-glossiest-pages-9233954.html

 

Midspring day’s dream in Florence 

20170320_112936_HDR(Hi Davide, very nice. I think you need a better headline, one that is more specific and captures the reader’s eye)

What a great experience staying in Florence . An astonishing city perfect for a Genius Loci. Salvatore Ferragamo decided that this city fits perfectly with its style. Here the company has its Headquarters, museum and Flagship inside an historical  beautiful Palace called “ Palazzo Spini Feroni”. This palace is located in Florence downtown very close to via Tornabuoni which is the luxury street of the town.

Inside this palace Ferragamo decided to create its own museum.

This museum is quite scenographic because it seems like a crypt full of products and samples related to Ferragamo’s history. The company also decided to create an exhibition in order to match art and fashion. So this place is full of incredible works of art that inspire great fashion designer as we can see in these pictures.

In my opinion this museum is well organised and the idea of matching art and fashion is good cause gives a great importance to art underlining its ability to inspire creative minds. I was able to appreciate all the works and easily understand the mood behind a dress related to a works of art . Beautiful.

LVMH and Kering. Which one has the better positioning?

Louis Vuitton Möet Hennessy (LVMH) led by Bernard Arnault and the Pinault-Printemps-Redoute, renamed Kering and led by François-Henri Pinault, are the two French Groups that dominate the luxury sector. Both own strong brands, but they have different histories and different business models.

But which one has the better positioning?2G10502RO

Concerning the financial situation, LVMH Group boasts in 2016 a growth of 5.43% (from 35.66bn to 37.60bn) and its net income improved of 11.42% (from 3.57bn to 3.98bn). On the opposite, Kering revenues grew of 6.91% (from 11.58bn to 12.38bn), while the net income improved of 16.88% (from 696.00m to 813.50m). It’s clear that LVMH has a stronger financial situation also thanks to its domination in two unrelated categories: leather goods and wines & spirits. The Group is also building up a dominant position in beauty retailing, primarily through Sephora and travel retailer DFS, exploiting rich synergies with its perfumes and cosmetics business. In addition, according to Forbes, Louis Vuitton is the 19th world’s most valuable brand with 27.3$ brand value and none of Kering’s brands are present in this ranking.

For the communication side, LVMH is most known with 235.100 likes on Facebook compared to 36.876 likes of Kering. This gap exists also between their main brands: Louis Vuitton, Christian Dior and Sephora have around 50 million followers; on the other hand Gucci, Bottega Veneta and Saint Laurent followers are around 20 million. To improve its image LVMH became one of the official partners of Cannes Film Festival in 2014. The Group also renovate some historical monuments e.g. the Versailles Palace and it supports forty-five worldwide art expositions.CharlizeTheron
These actions – mixed to the support of celebrities like Léa Seydoux (for Louis Vuitton), Charlize Theron, Johnny Depp and Natalie Portman (all of them for Dior) – glorify LVMH brand equity. This approach is less used by Kering that focuses on less known celebrities. The few exceptions are Charlotte Casiraghi and Gal Gadot for Gucci and Cara Delevingne for Saint Laurent.cara-delevingne-per-yves-saint-laurent

With reference to the diversification, LVMH owns seventy brands in different sectors – spirits & wine, fashion & leather goods, beauty & cosmetics, hotels, boating… – but its diversification go beyond the “usual” sectors. Indeed, it is also the owner of some magazines such as Les Echos, Connaissance des arts, Nowness and a radio channel as Radio Classique. On the other side, Kering decided to act in a different way, it wants to differentiate its brand portfolio enlarging its activity on sport & lifestyle, that’s why it acquired Puma, Volcom and Cobra: a quite strange decision for a luxury Group.

To conclude, LVMH is – at the moment – the most valuable and better diversified Group. The Kering strategy, above all in terms of diversification, appears ambiguous and quite incoherent for a luxury Group, but in the long term these decisions will possibly lead the French giant to a better positioning compared to LVMH Group. 

Sara Russo

References:

The Business of Fashion

Financial Times

Forbes

Kering

LVMH 

Meltyfan

The Beauty Smith

Harbour Rights

From the runway to the stage

“Fashion is not something that exists in dresses only. Fashion is in the sky, on the stages, fashion has to do with ideas, the way we live, what is happening”

-Coco Chanel-

In 1924, Coco Chanel was one of the first designers that understood the deep synergy between two art forms, Fashion and Dance. Focusing on performances through the years, we might say that these two creative universes are intrinsically linked. Movements are the medium used by dancers, but they are also the essential horizon which designers have in mind when create a new dress or a new accessory.

Designers and coreographers have often met each other establishing stunning collaborations that made the history of these two fields. As a matter of fact, It is not a coincidence if dress and adornment have played an important role for such a long time in the visual allure of dance, and fashion designers have often been inspired by way dancers look, too.

Everything started when Coco Chanel, dance lover and passionate in all kinds of art, designed the sportswear worn for the main gymnasts of the play “Le train bleu”. This collaboration probably gave the green light to an innovative route that many important members of the fashion system have followed after her. We all know that fashion is based on “flux and re-flux” so it is not strange to guess how Karl Lagerfeld, current creative director of the Maison Chanel, took ispiration from this collection to design the costumes for the English National Ballet in 2009.

For few years, the war cut out these works, but they  got re-started again after the conflict with a completly different style. In this period also Christian Dior, joined this phylon creating the famous dresses for the “Black Swan” for the show “Swan Lake” with the music of Tchaikovsky.

The 1940s saw the Birth of the most acknowledged  accessories nowdays: the ballet flat. They were designed by Rose Repetto, mother of Roland Petit, one of the most important dancers in history. In a very short time, ballet flats became famous also beyond the dance world, tried and tested by both genders and by many important people as Brigitte Bardot, Serge Gainsborg and Audrey Hepburn.

bb            Source: allthedaysordained.blogspot.it/2012/08/repetto.html

When Roland Petit grew up, he asked Yves Saint Laurent to design the costumes for the show “Cyrano de Bergerac” in 1959 and the more famous one “Notre-Dame de Paris” staged at Opèra de Paris in 1965 that probably consolidated more the link between fashion and coreography.

There were many of these collaborations and it is not possible to talk about each one, even if they were in their own way important and suggestive. Over the years this current was reversed and nowdays dance follows fashion instead of the other way around.

To remember the show “Bal de Couture” organized by the New York City Ballet”, totally dedicated to the couturier Valentino Garavani which designed the costumes personally, blaffed the spectators with a feast of colors and shades of high fashion.

senza-titoloSource: New York City Ballet Tiler Peck, center, and fellow company members in Valentino in “Bal de Couture” at the Koch Theater. Credit Andrea Mohin/The New York Times

More recently also Alexander McQueen, Elsa Schiaparelli and many others were reasserting the connection between dance and fashion saving the heritage of the predecessors in this way.

There is no more magical scenario for designers than the theater, where they can travel with thoughts and with scissors among the scene costumes which remain in the history of the stages, cinema and styles. Fashion and dance: a timeless ode to beauty: in the past, now and in the future.

nycb-principal-dancer-tiler-peck-in-sarah-burton-for-alexander-mcqueen-1                         Source: NYCB Principal Dancer Tiler Peck, in Sarah Burton for Alexander McQueen

 

References:

“The Guardian” Website: https://www.theguardian.com/fashion/2014/nov/08/dance-fashion-exhibition-new-york-fit-museum

“NY Times” Website: https://www.nytimes.com/2014/10/12/fashion/new-york-city-ballets-partnership-with-fashion.html?_r=0

“Il fatto quotidiano” Website: http://www.ilfattoquotidiano.it/2014/08/19/dance-fashion-lunione-fra-balletto-e-moda-in-mostra-a-new-york/1081928/

 

Brunello Cucinelli helps us …

The endless debate of aesthetics with ethics has it roots in the luxury sector, and Brunellofoto-articolo-2 Cucinelli is, nowadays, one of the most important players in  this field.

Of course he tries to keep his company fashionable but above all with responsible actions and with the social and moral values that characterize the social responsibility that our parents taught to us. The entrepreneur’s attention is focused on the rediscovery of Italian places and of Italian handicraft.

Brunello Cucinelli tries to explain an important concept: aesthetics and ethics find their point of contact in beauty. The beauty that is defined as moral value, the beauty that for Dostoevskij ”will save the word,” the beauty that is the basis of the concept of dignity.

We live in a capitalistic society that has changed, will change and is changing our perception, and in the luxury word this transformation is emphasized by the propensity for excesses. Brunello Cucinelli has understood this concept many years ago and he decided to use the luxury market, with all its awareness and excesses, in order to promote and rediscovery a new form of beauty, the moral beauty for which the emperor Adriano felt responsible, and for which Brunello Cuccinelli feels responsible too.

He is considered as a philosopher, a beauty lover, but at the same time a visionary entrepreneur. He has understood what Geoffrey Chaucer said many years ago, that ”there is never a new fashion but it’s old,” old for the real moral values that we are slowly and inexorably losing in a society driven by unbridled capitalism. This “old fashion” described by Chaucer and kept alive by Brunello Cucinelli is based on human values and respect for Life.schermata-02-2457812-alle-16-05-03

These values, often considered too abstract, are reflected on real decisions and actions. One clear example of that is the reconstruction after the earthquake of the Norcia’s church.

Beauty and respect, ethic and dignity, all this value must be respected, all this values must be followed and preserved.

Brunello Cucinelli helps us, our consciousness helps the word.

CRM: a new opportunity for restaurants

As we all know, the advent of the Internet changed the world in the last 20 years.
It is difficult for millennials like myself to imagine a world without this technology.
Yes, maybe we remember something from our childhood, but memories are unprecise and sometimes confused, hidden by the nostalgia of that time.

After Internet, another revolution was the creation of social networks. A phenomenon that involved a big part of the world.

In 2016, of 7.395 billion people of the world, 3.419 billion were Internet users and 2.307 were active on social media.[1]

The diffusion of smartphones greatly influenced this growth, because the access to internet became easier and more immediate.[2]

Screen-Shot-2016-01-28-at-14.35.30

So, in a context like this, also the relationships with customers have had to evolve and CRM (Customer Relationship Management) represents this evolution.

It is just an evolution and not a revolution, because it was born from the marketing area.
CRM is a database full of information about customers, used to improve interactions and businesses with them.[3]

Relationships created with the customers using this system should be constant and long lasting, also after the conclusion of a sale.[4]

So, in few words, CRM is the dark side of the loyalty programs: names, numbers, statistics. All that kind of stuff that usually scares customers, but not only.

If you think about the classic loyalty programs, with fidelity cards, points collections and discounts, for sure you couldn’t find a real connection with the luxury market. There the concept of discount is not so common.

But: the principles of belonging, personalization and reward which support CRM are very much connected to the true luxury experience.[5]

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Thanks to CRM it is possible create a stronger one to one communication and relationship with the luxury costumer.  Personal information about the consumer could also be inserted in the database along with the basic information.

For example, in fashion, the database can remember important client events like the anniversaries.

This is very important because what the client wants is a personalised luxury shopping experience, so the retailers, by rounding out the basic data of their customers with more information, allow their staffs to personalize the sale process.[6]

What about the new kind of luxury fields?

In the last few years interests of luxury consumers have  changed, moving on more experiential products.

Millennial customers are changing the rules, looking for something different from previous generations, and now is expected a growing of the experiential sector by the 6-7%[7] than the last year.

The food sector is part of the “experiential area” and in the luxury world is quite new, because of that the structure is still disorganized compared to the fashion sector.

Just look around you, how many monobrands food stores can you find? Really few examples. For this reason CRM is not common in this world: the necessity to build such a structure is not already born.

pexels-photo-262982

The situation is not different for restaurants. Even if they use to have some traditional clients it is difficult to find CRM developed inside their organization.

They usually have “the person”, the one that knows everything, remembers the story of the restaurant and has a special relationship with the historical clients. But, what is this if not a beginning of CRM? You collect information from your guests during their visits, create a special relationship with them and, maybe, you invite them for the special events at the restaurant.

How can you transfer all this knowledge? Using only words is possible that some information would be lost.

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Think about, for example, Gordon Ramsay’s restaurants: there are 25 all over the world. With a serious CRM program, they can be sure to treat their regulars in a perfect way wherever they are, in London, New York or where else.

So: CRM is a huge opportunity for restauration and, in general, for food luxury sector. What are we waiting for?

_________________________________________________________________

[1] WE ARE SOCIAL, Digital in 2016: in Italia e nel mondo, http://wearesocial.com/it/blog/2016/01/report-digital-social-mobile-in-2016

[2] MSN, The Smartphone Changed The World In A Decade, http://a.msn.com/01/en-gb/BBy5JPf?ocid=se

[3] MICROSOFT, What does a CRM solution do?, https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/dynamics365/what-is-crm

[4] OPEN SYMBOL, Un po’ di storia del CRM, http://www.opensymbol.it/storia-del-crm/

[5] LUXURY DAILY, Luxury brands should not be afraid of CRM, https://www.luxurydaily.com/luxury-brands-should-not-be-afraid-of-crm/

[6] CEGID, Clienteling & Crm Nel Retail: Fattori Chiave Nel Luxury Retail, http://www.cegid.com/it/retail/clienteling-crm-nel-retail-fattori-chiave-nel-lusso/

[7] Il SOLE 24 ORE, Lusso: nel 2016 415 milioni di clienti hanno speso 860 miliardi, http://www.infodata.ilsole24ore.com/2017/02/17/lusso-nel-2016-415-milioni-clienti-speso-860-miliardi/

Images:

http://wearesocial.com/it/blog/2016/01/report-digital-social-mobile-in-2016

http://www.intelligentluxury.it/crm-nel-fashion-e-nel-lusso-come-sceglierlo/

gordonramsay.com

Changing Lanes

When a brand starts to show symptoms of under performing, that’s the time to take things into considerations and think about a new marketing strategy.

It may look dramatic but it is not. You have to change the language in which you communicate with your target audience.

When is the right time?

No clear strategy: if your target cannot identify your brand it means you are sending a mixed message to both your customers and prospects. The confusion will lead to the brand losing its position among valued customers.

Wrong positioning: what a brand means to your target is vital but if your brand position is not the one that you claimed, you need to think about brand repair. A smart move could be re-positioning the brand in this value position if it is not already claimed by the other competitors. In this case you can relaunch the brand without brand repair.

Market change: If after market research, a great change was noticed and the new position is of higher emotional intensity, you have to consider changes to align your position with the brand DNA.

Competitor change: if you note drastic changes in terms of opinion, position and marketing strategy, you have to take those signs in consideration. Sooner or later think about re-positioning and relaunching your brand — otherwise you would be excluded.

What to do?

Make sure that those who already have awareness of your brand get your message loud and clear. They must know the brand has changed.

Your new brand position has to come down strong with a unique and clear purpose so  that it makes it difficult for your new target to ignore it.

You have to create enough buzz around your brand that if prospects ignore it they fear being excluded from a new movement. Give them a part and they will get involved and eventually engage with your brand.

Make sure your new message agrees with your existing customers, but don’t give your whole focus to them. What this means is that your focus needs to be more on the beliefs, precepts, needs and wants of the prospect rather than the needs and wants of current customers.

You can grab your prospect attention by changing the appearance of the brand. Coming up with the new tag line is not enough, you should most certainly change the logo to trigger your prospects to explore your brands deeper.

So if you are sure that it’s time to relaunch your brand you should first start with great market research. But it is not all up to numbers and analysis. You should use the help of someone who knows how to do it.

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Source: fashiongonerogue.com

Ain’t Laurent without Yves

Hedi Slimane was heavily criticized when he decided to drop Yves and change the name of the brand to Saint Laurent.

By changing the brand image from classic Parisian to edgy rock and roll he claimed to bring a younger demographic and he delivered indeed. By the end of the 2013 the French fashion house revenue had a 51% growth.

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Source: fashiongonerogue.com

All in all, a must-have! 

In 2008 Phoebe Philo the new creative director of Céline already had a vision of all the changes she wants to make.

“After my break, and with Celine in various different hands these last years, it felt better for me to work on an idea of a wardrobe than too much on trends. .. The collection is about interchangeable investment pieces. I worked hard to create things that will stand the test of time.”

In 2010 she launched the logo-free bags and soon after it became a must have item. They let the product to speak for itself and refused to do any advertising on social media. It became not only a trendsetting piece, but a cult item. In 2012, the company saw an increase in sales of 62.9%

If you want to make a mark you have to be consistent. You have to take risks and experiment. When you realize it could be a successful method you have to build your content around it. It is not an easy task and surely needs great investment, but by finding the problem soon enough, choosing a right strategy and having the proper plan you most likely can achieve your goal.

Shokoufeh Emadi

http://www.stealingshare.com

https://fashionbi.com

Urban cycling is stylish now

Urban cycling is becoming more and more popular.

For some it is an ethical choice,  while for others it is just stylish.

This trend started with eco-friendly people who were trying to fight the pollution problem and in few years the rules of the street changed dramatically.

Today there are cities like San Francisco, Copenhagen or Valencia which are considered cycling hubs.

But don’t forget Amsterdam which is the bicycle capital of the world; the city is equipped with an elaborate network of cycle-paths and uses bikes as the easiest mode of transport.
London’s most fashionable ladies and gents are getting on two wheels too and the big cyclist commuters community is increasing day by day.

 

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Britain’s modern-day bike boom is about normal people.

The trend started with the early cycle couriers in 80’s when no one had heard about digital devices jet.

In the annals of British subcultures they were seen as the proto-hipster.

Now, according to the 2014 census, the proportion of people in the UK making their journey to work on a bicycle held static at 2.8 per cent.

But in British cities, cycling has reached critical mass: Brighton, Bristol, Manchester, Newcastle and Sheffield all recorded an increase of 80 per cent or more in the number of commuters on bikes during the noughties; in inner London, the increase was a staggering 144 per cent.

Among what urban theorist Richard Florida calls “the creative class”, the bicycle is a potent symbol of identity and status.

More bikes, it seems, means more well-paid knowledge economy jobs.

 

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Cycling to work is positively associated with the share of creative-class jobs” Florida wrote.

Well, commuting in style, in the middle of crowded platforms and jam-packed congestion zones, now is easy.

Even if in Italy the car remains king, we are moving to a sustainable mobility solution: Bike!

And we are doing it in the most chic way.

We are masters in looking fabulous while getting from point A to B cycling.

Here’s my picks of the most stylish bikes for urban cycling:
The Trussardi bike, 2007.

trussardi bike

After 30 years from the first Trussardi’s bike, Milan Vukmirovic, the Creative Director of the maison, designed a new urban bike.

The Trussardi 1911 camouflage city bike is inspired by the army as the previous model which was similar to the military BSA Paratrooper folding bike.

dettaglio trussardi

 

Camouflage leather covers the bicycle’s seat and comes with two matching bags hung on both the front and the back.

The chassis is painted in the tones of leather and includes golden detailing on the kickstand, from light and other parts of the body. It’s truly a sleek and vintage-like bike that embodies a city-chic style.
Gucci per Bianchi bicycle collection, 1012.

 

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Gucci has launched two exclusive Bianchi by Gucci bicycles design by the brand’s Creative Director, Frida Giannini who highlight that now cycling is luxury and it has a price tag to go along with too.

The two bicycles perfectly carry forward the brand’s codes of luxury while creating a new cosmopolitan aesthetic for those looking to turn heads while on the go.

The bike is available in two different models: a white single-speed version designed for the city cycling, and a black carbon-fiber model intended for both city and off-road cycling. Both biked include leather-bound handles and saddles with Gucci’s signature red and green stripe.

 

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In addition, Gucci has created a range of complementary cycling accessories including helmets, gloves and a water bottle for the ultimate in cycling luxury.

The bicycles are present in selected Gucci stores worldwide, including boutiques in Rome. New York, London, Paris and Tokyo. The bikes are also available by Bianchi Cafè&cycles in Stockholm; a new concept store opened by Bianchi that combines its bicycles with an Italian delicatessen.

 

Diesel & Pinarello’s “Only the Brave”, 2012.

 

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Italian fashion design company Diesel has partnered with award-winning bicycle manufactured Pinarello to create “Only the Brave,” a very slick single speed city bicycle.
It’s a match of aesthetic aluminum simplicity, boldly contemporary graphic and sublime engineering.

Light and versatile to adapt safety to all kind of urban streets, it is reminiscent of the American messenger bike in its design and soul.

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Moreover, as with all Pinarello’s models, it is the result of a careful study of balances, strenghts and efficiency.

The bike was created inside R&D Pinarello’s Lab, where the line of the bicycle was studied together with the Diesel Creative Team and further developed by Pinarello lab using SOE system and analysis.

“Only the Brave” is available in Diesel and Pinarello stores and the frame design features are either in “Diesel green” or “Matt black.”

 

References:

http://www.pinarello.com/it/bici2014/fixie/only-the-brave-by-diesel

http://www.bianchi.com/global/bianchi-world/bianchi-by-gucci-208325

http://www.trendhunter.com/trends/trussardi-1911-camouflage-city-bicycle

http://www.independent.co.uk/extras/indybest/outdoor-activity/cyclinghttp://www.independent.co.uk/extras/indybest/outdoor-activity/cycling

http://www.vogue.fr/mode/news-mode/articles/la-nouvelle-bicyclette-signe-trussardi/18145

THE ART OF JEWELLERY MAKING

In the past owning a piece of jewellery was perceived as a symbol of power and glory, and it was meant for people with a very high social status indeed. Today, thanks to the discovery of new precious material and tools, almost everyone owns a piece of jewellery.

How does the process of jewellery making work?

Artisans make jewellery starting from wax carving as they create a model from a single block of wax. After that, the model is embedded in a metal flask and left to harden, and then the flask is put in an oven at very high temperatures so that all parts of the wax sculpture can burn away. Then, the flask is placed in a cradle in alignment with a crucible where gold will be melted.

Over the years, jewellery making techniques have changed as keystrokes replaced works in wax. In a world of computer aided design, now artisans are able to create original models in a virtual world.

the art of jewellery making

Today, gold and platinum are no longer melted with hand-held torches as technicians are able to control both temperature and atmosphere in casting chambers. After the models are cast, they are cut loose and worked over with battery of abrasive compounds. Once a job that was done with handheld files and emery paper, models are now de-burred with finishing tools driven by hand-held flexible shafts and upright polishing machines.

After the preparation of the jewels is complete, artisans assemble any additional settings, parts or pieces needed. Even if the jeweler’s torch is still the dominant tool for soldering and welding, lasers are becoming more and more popular in modern jewelry making. Thanks to the use of  lasers, our artisans can do precision welding on areas of jewellery where heat has to be controlled. The concentrated focus of lasers enables our designers to weld precious metal in close proximity to sensitive, valuable stones, without ruining or melting the surrounding work.

After the metal work is complete, the precious stones are added to the piece and specialized jewellers who are skilled at the art of stone setting, using hand-held tools to secure diamonds in gold and platinum. The stone setters cut slots into precious metal, allowing them to sit level before they are tightened. The skilled hands of the setters apply just the right amount of pressure to finesse prongs, beads, and walls over delicate stones to ensure that they remain snug in their settings.

The last part of jewellery making process is polishing and finishing. In jewellery polishing, metal is buffed with rotary tools made from bristles, felt, or muslin. Applied in descending stages, from coarse to fine, wheels are charged with different polishing compounds to have the desired luster. Last but not least, finishes are applied to enhance the design of pieces.

Valeria Balsamà

http://jewelrydesigns.com/jewelry/jewelry-making/

The beauty of Marrakech

Le Jardin Majorelle

Jacques Majorelle (1886 – 1962), French painter and son of a well-known Art nouveau ebony carpenter, Louis Majorelle, moved to Morocco in 1917 after an invitation of the sergeant marshal Lyautey. At once, he was seduced by the city of Marrakech: the sparkling colors of the streets, the spiced scent of the typical food and the murmuring of the people in the market.

In 1923, Jacques Majorelle bought a huge Villa, painted everything in blue, now known as the Blue Majorelle, by the French architect Paul Sinoir.

From 1947, Jacques Majorelle opened his garden to the public and everybody was  astonished by the magnificent place. In 1962, after his death, nobody took care of it and the Villa was completely abandoned.

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Yves Saint Laurent and Pierre Bergé

In 1980 Yves Saint Laurent and the love of his life Pierre Bergè bought the Villa for spending some good times in Marrakech, far from the chaotic city of Paris, where they used to live and work together. They restored the place, enlarging the native vegetation with more palms, trees and c543226164actus. It was supposed to be their peaceful oasi, their secret place for freely loving each other and for spending some time with their friends. But things did not go in the right way. In Marrakech, Yves Saint Laurent completely lost his control: with drugs abuse, alcohol addiction and sex.

After his death in 2008, Pierre Bergé bought also the Jardin Majorelle and from that moment, the Jardin Majorelle became the Foundation of Yves Saint Laurent.

The Foundation of Yves Saint Laurent

The foundation is a Moroccan public institution, that guarantees the safety and the functioning use of the Jardin Majorelle thanks to its own resources. All the donations and charities are entirely focused on financing the cultural, educational and social actions in Morocco, such as:

  • Private meetings about botanic, literature and traveling exhibitions;
  • Funding for cultural and educational institutions in Morocco, like la Foundation Tenor pour la Culture, la Cinematheque de Tanger, l’Ecole supérieure des arts visuals de Marrakech;
  • Scholarships for Moroccan students;
  •  Economical supports for the social activities in Morocco.

Inside the Villa, visitors can also find the museum of Love, a library, a restaurant bar and a boutique. The museum of Love is a gallery full of sketches drawn by Yves Saint Laurent that he used to send to his friends and his clients like greetings for New Years’ Eve.

In 2005, the Jardin Majorelle counted 93 employees, 683 000 visitors of the foundation.

Morocco_Gardens_Pond_480289

Barbara Fabris

24 hours in Venice

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(hi, OK to publish — Jennifer)

March is the Carnival month par excellence, and in Italy we have one of the most famous, Venice Carnival.

If you want to live a luxury experience, Carnival is not the best date to be in Venice, because it’s full of people and can made you loose your patience, but the atmosphere as you walk between the canals is incredible.

I had the opportunity to live the two weekends of Carnival and here are my top tips of things not to miss if you go to Venice.

 

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The first warning that I have to tell you is not to follow the map, Venice is more beautiful when you get lost.

The Grand Canal is the main artery of the city, where you can admire all the palaces and all Venetians with their beautiful costumes.

Take a private water taxi and feel like an actress/actor arriving at the  Mostra de Venezia film festival and fall in love again with this fantastic city.

Despite all these touristy things, I’m going to show you the hidden luxury side of Venice; first and most important don’t think about any other hotels, take a boat and go directly to Aman hotel, set in a 16th century palazzo on the Grand Canal and self proclaimed 7-star hotel. Also it is the place that George Clooney chose to get married.

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After leaving all your luggage in the hotel, go directly to the iconic St Mark’s Basilica, to avoid the crowds book a table at the private rooftop of Londra Palace and enjoy the stunning views

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Spritz and Bellinis are mandatory in Venice, so the best place to head is Harrys Bar where they  were created. Naomi Campbell once said : “If you travel to Venice and do not visit these place it is as if you had not been in Venice. It’s the first bar in the famous Cipriani  empire. Ernest Hemingway, Winston Churchill, Orson Welles are examples of the personalities that passed through this famous restaurant.

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To end the night you can not miss the B Bar Lounge in Bauer Hotel where you can have fun among the best cocktails while you listen their wonderful jazz band.

 

 

CREDITS :

Pic 1 : http://www.telegraph.co.uk/content/dam/Travel/Destinations/Europe/Italy/Venice/venice-restaurants-by-canal-xlarge.jpg

Pic 2 :http://www.telegraph.co.uk/travel/tours/venice-things-to-see-and-do-beyond-st-marks

Pic 3 : http://www.sabadi.it/cioccolato-sabad-motivo-pi-andare-hotel-7-stelle-venezia/

Pic 4 :http://www.commdiginews.com/travel/londra-palace-in-venice-elegantly-wondrous-travel-55066

Pic 5 :  http://www.cinematografo.it/recensioni/harrys-bar/

 

 

 

 

Blurred line between fast-fashion and luxury

Once upon a time, luxury brands were based on rarity, exclusivity, high quality materials, superior pricing and unique craftsmanship. They were purchased by high-end consumers who established a loyal relationship with them. On the contrary, fast-fashion brands ensured low prices and focused on generic and mainstream products that constantly changed. Is it still valid nowadays? Are these boundaries between luxury and fast-fashion still firm?

Documento5

Today it’s common to find people combining shoes from Gucci, jeans from H&M, sunglasses from Dior, shirts from Zara and bags from Louis Vuitton. This trend of “fluid segment” is undeniable. Just opening your Instagram account you can find thousands of pictures of influencers mixing and matching different types of brands. For this reason luxury companies are considering fast-fashion as a threat and a real competitor.

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The lines of the two categories are totally blurred. Fast-fashion brands adopt luxury strategies: introduction of limited-edition products, celebrity endorsement, high advertisement expenditure and store openings in prestige retail locations. On the other hand, luxury houses tend to adopt the fast-fashion production model. They increased the number of collections they produce, the speed at which they take those collections from the catwalk to the store floor, as well as the variety of products available in their stores. This approach is necessary to be considered cool and updated, but it could be risky because of a potential loss of exclusivity.

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The consumers have changed in the fashion market. High levels of creativity and innovation of product design, clear differentiation of the value proposition along with a proper brand management are the keys of success for these luxury brands. Do you want to compete in the modern arena? Be aware of this ongoing trend and turn it from a threat to an opportunity… or you may lose the game!

References:

http://luxurysociety.com/en/articles/2015/12/luxury-vs-fast-fashion-live-battle-or-blurred-lines/

https://www.researchgate.net/publication/307597678_The_Relationship_between_Fast_Fashion_and_Luxury_Brands_An_Explanatory_Study_in_the_UK_Market

Money to invest? Choose luxury

Think of the best investment goods. Think of gold, diamonds and stock markets. Now take them all and put them away. In a bag, for example.

Fashion, vanity, quality, status. Like it or not, there are plenty of reasons to purchase a designer bag. Anyway, there’s one single reason that will persuade even the most skeptical among you.

Let’s proceed step by step.

A study from baghunter.com underlined how the value of some iconic handbags has dramatically increased over the years.

The Hermès Birkin bag, the most loved by the stars.

birkin bag

Every fashionista knows that there’s no life goal such as owning a Birkin. Expertly crafted, this simple-designed yet sophisticated bag is one of the greatest symbols of luxury.

There are several reasons for its incredibly high price.

First, remember that the price change is mainly due the discretion of Hermès. It is no secret that luxury brands apply stronger mark-ups on their products. In the case of the Birkin, the prices increase by between 5% and 10% annually for a new bag.

Second, the supreme quality of craftsmanship. This is a timeless bag created for longevity.

Third, scarcity. Only few handbags are produced every year, and they’re not advertised (as if they need to!)  That makes the Birkin even more coveted (hence the famous waiting list that can last for years). Get in line, ladies.

According to the study, a bag in excellent and pristine condition can fetch up to more than 120% of the money invested in the purchasing.

The Chanel Classic Flap Bag, the most iconic piece of the Parisian Maison.

chanel bag

The research pointed out how the value of this handbag has only increased over the years. Like the Birkin, we can identify several factors to explain that. For sure, raw material and labor rising costs are what mainly underlies this phenomenon. Plus, don’t forget the inflation rates.

Even though the Flap Bag has always been the most appealing and popular of the brand, Chanel has also increased the price of other products with great fashion and trend potential (i.e. the Boy Bag).

What about the other brands?

A classic designer handbag will never lose its appeal. Although Hermès and Chanel are the most impressive cases, you should not underestimate the other brands capability to create value. As said before, high mark-ups are used in luxury to increase profit and to preserve the exclusivity of a brand. From a timeless piece you can always expect a surge in value.

If I was convincing enough for you to consider this new kind of investment, keep in mind just few simple rules:

  • Choose neutral tones: black, tan, beige, nude will never go out of style. Seasonal colours can provide you profit just for short term investments.
  • Exotic and precious skins are more expensive yet more valuable.
  • Timeless bags have, are, and always will be the most appreciated ones. They will increase their value from the moment you’ll purchase them.

Do not necessarily take this article as a financial advice. Au contraire, take it as something to open your mind about high-end goods. Yes, they might mean frivolousness and ostentation, but they can be something more.

If you’re not interested in investments that’s fine. If you only care about how a beautiful bag makes you feel I have nothing against it.

Isn’t it still an investment in happiness after all?

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Giulia Ferretti

Photo credits:

fashnberry.com

baghunter.com

net-a-porter.com

Sources:

Baghunter

Forbes

Financial Times

Time

Daily Mail

Observer

Into the Blue – The sea and its iconic watches

Do you know that feeling you get with the first warm spring breeze?

The city wakes up from its winter lethargy with new energy and widespread positiveness. The sky turns bright, the days get longer and the temperature rises. We are all still very far from holidays, but it is inevitable, for a second, to wander and dream about summer and the sea.

To me, that would recall sun, shades and above all, dive watches. Let’s have a look together at the most iconic models and some of my own favourite pieces.

Before your monthly dose of watches though, some brief information and history.

According to the definition, a diving watch is a watch designed for underwater diving that features a water resistance greater than 100Mt. The average resistance is usually around 200/300Mt, but there are watches that can go way deeper (for example, the Rolex DeepSea guarantees a depth of 3900Mt). The standards and features for dive watches are regulated by the International Organisation of Standardisation in the ISO 6425 standard. The quality demand is very high; in fact, the main manufacturing houses submit their models to dozens of tests in order to control the watches and their strength, pressure resistance and waterproof cases.

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By the way, the first waterproof cases were built by Rolex in 1926 when the Swiss house patented the famous “Oyster” watch case that featured an hermetic seal. This was followed by Omega’s first dive watch intended for commercial distribution, the Omega “Marine,” introduced in 1932 and capable of withstanding a pressure up to 135Mt.

Another important moment in dive watches directly involved Italy. As a matter of fact, when in 1935 the Royal Italian Navy requested a luminous underwater watch for divers, Officine Panerai offered the “Radiomir”, a model that is still produced and has been reinvented up to modern days. The navy was a major target and inspiration for dive watches, such as Blancpain’s “Fifty Fathoms” that addressed marines from different countries, from the US to France.

Blancpain-Fifty-Fathoms-for-Horbiter.jpg

The Basel Fair held in 1954 saw the introduction of the Rolex Submariner, a watch that quickly became a cult and a much appreciated tool for scuba divers. In 1965 Seiko introduced the first Japanese professional diver watch. In general, the Sixties saw the birth and the development of some “ultra water resistance watches” such as the Rolex Sea-Dweller 2000 (2000ft = 610Mt) and the Omega Seamaster Professional (600Mt).

The need for functionality quickly faded with time and new technologies, but for what concerns the design, many contemporary sports models owe more than a lot to the first diving watches.

Rolex Submariner

Maybe the best known and most iconic watch of all time, the Rolex Submariner is a sport watch originally conceived and designed for diving. Now that it may have lost its original exclusivity and aim, many forget the innovations it originally presented. In 1954 was one of the first watches completely made for divers, displaying a dial of great legibility to be easily read under water, a waterproof case and a rotating crown functionally conceived for measuring the time in each pause for decompression.

It appeared in many James Bond movies, from Dr. No. to Licence to kill. From GoldenEye onwards, the character is seen wearing Omega watches.

Even if the classic model is black, here you can see the green one, nicknamed the Hulk.

Omega Seamaster

Another iconic watch line from the worldwide known Swiss manufacture Omega. The line has been produced since 1948, it has a water resistance up to 1200Mt, luminescent hands and some models even feature an helium release valve. The historical dualism with Rolex sees the opposition of the Submariner and the Seamaster but also of the Daytona and the Speedmaster and the presence in the James Bond movies. Both manufactures have great heritage and beautiful diving models, choose your favourite!

Here you can see the Seamaster 300 Spectre, a limited edition dedicated to, you guessed it, James Bond.

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Seiko “Turtle” (SRP777)

The Japanese house was founded in 1881, thus being the first watch manufacturer in Japan. Seiko is a Japanese word meaning “exquisite” or “success” that well describes the intentions and the final results the house achieved. It started off surrounded by an aura of skepticism compared to the big historical Swiss manufacturers but it quickly gained recognition through the production of great pieces both in terms of quality and price range.

My own favourite diving watch from Seiko is the so called “Turtle” SRP777. It is usually a good thing when a watch gets a nickname and this is a good example. The case has a vintage shape that recalls a turtle shell and the dial has a subdued but balanced look. Great legibility and functionality are among the best features of the watch.

Seiko-Prospex-SRP777-3.jpg

Unimatic Modello Uno (U1-B)

Besides the big names in horology, there exists a parallel world of “micro” or “boutique” brands that produce pieces of great interest. This is the case of the small Italy-based company Unimatic. The company has been created by two industrial designers, Giovanni Moro and Simone Nunziato and produces limited series of sports watches.

Unimatic was born in 2015, thus being a young company that obtained attention for its minimalistic traits both for design and marketing approach. They offered two timepieces, the Model Uno (a dive watch) and Model Due (a field watch). Both models are unfortunatley (for us) sold out but Unimatic is certainly a young brand to keep an eye on.

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All in all, new technologies and tools are now more handy when it strictly comes to scuba diving, but the historical diving watches will always remain a reference point for the models to come.

Stefano Re

References:

https://kohkooddivers.wordpress.com/

https://www.rolex.com/it/watches/sea-dweller

https://www.horbiter.com/

http://www.luxuryswatch.com/

http://www.ablogtowatch.com/seiko-prospex-srp777-dive-watch-review/

http://www.notey.com/blogs/unimatic

 

Feeling good is the new looking good

Feeling comfortable while also being socially inclusive at the time of purchase is the upward trend in the behavior of luxury consumers. A client whose lifestyle increasingly prioritizes experiences that transforms the body and mind.

Nowadays, luxury consumption has been impacted by values other than those more traditional such as exclusivity, tradition, timelessness and experience. Dealing with traditional values the issue has been not only to delight the customer during the buying process, but to give a legitimate meaning to the moment of purchase.

A local experience leads the consumer to exchange a five-star suite for a more original and ‘native’ living experience. An immersion in local culture rather than an afternoon of shopping at the mall in a twelve cylinder sports car. Other than absolute luxury experiences the consumer will prefer hotels that maintain good sustainable practices, beach resorts that respect the environmental limits, spas that offer treatments not only aesthetic, but spiritual and self-knowledge, cruise operators that take passengers to meet and buy from local shops all in the name of experiencing something more realistic.

From this point on, these consumers have sought a sense of well-being that is in tune with more human values. Solidarity, respect for the local culture, environmentally friendly, all this is going to become more and more importante in life.

So this is a phenomenon that is growing within the health and beauty industry. Taking care of yourselves will generate more pleasure when you take care of others as well. Data from the Euromonitor institute indicate that this is a segment that moved US $ 701 billion in 2016 and is expected to grow 17% over the next five years. The expectation is a volume of $833 billion by 2021. Just for comparison, consumption of luxury personal items grew only 1% in 2016 (Bain & Co.).

Another recent report from the McKinsey & Company consultancy and in partnership with the Business of Fashion website pointed precisely to the growth of this market that of well-being is now associated with luxury. Something that will have a huge impact on the economy.

The investment arm of LVMH, L Catterton Europe, has signed a deal to acquire a majority stake in Italian bicycle maker Pinarello. This acquisition is just one example of how the luxury sector’s demand for health and wellness is growing. Spend money on experiences that add value to the body and mind without losing sight of some issues such as superior comfort and services at the height of the average ticket of these purchases. This significantly outpaces the slow growth in the personal luxury goods market. In this new behavior, ‘feeling good is the new looking good’

Is this a change of conscious? 

No, this change in behavior began with the younger generations – the millennials. Children and grandchildren of traditional consumers in the industry have began to take action. A cluster that no longer dazzles with logos and the status associated with luxury, and want something more original, and environmetally responsible.

Secondly, this new attitude is no longer related to the age of the buyer. This is a new world-class luxury consumer mindset that is gaining ground and becoming more socially acceptable, leading industry players to work hard on new strategies. Providing a meaning, much more than ‘glamour’, to customers is the goal of the coming years. Those who live will see, and will feel the difference.

Maria Júlia Cabianca

References:

The Business of Fashion

“Bling bling, everytime I go around yo city”

It was 1999 and few black guys were just chilling and having fun doing what they were used to doing: music.

We are in New Orleans (Louisiana,US) and a young Lil Wayne was in the studio with his crew, Hot Boys (B.G., Turk, Juvenile), Birdman and the producer Manny Fresh just trying to record the hit of their career.

They were just writing and recording music all day long.

Those guys were used to speaking in slang and one of their favorite words was “bling” to talk about jewellery.

One day Lil Wayne said “the” word in a different way they were used to do and it was a breakthrough.

They decided that they should have recorded a song called “Bling”.

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Producer Manny Fresh during an interview stated:

“(…) I wrote the hook. The whole entire hook. I wrote it to the music. It had to be two words because I put these two stabs in the beat while I was doing it. I wanted to match the kick. That was the reason why I didn’t just say “bling. (…)”

This is exactly what happened that day in 1999 and the hook Manny Fresh was talking about is the following and Lil Wayne was lucky enough to be the one that had the proud of rapping it:

Bling bling everytime I go around yo city,

Bling bling, pinky ring worth about fifty

Bling bling, everytime I buy a new ride

Bling bling, Lorinsers on Yokahama tires

Bling bling.”

The song “Bling Bling” was placed into the B.G.’s solo album, Chopper City in the Ghetto, released April 22nd 1999, both because he was the one with the biggest amount of followers and because it was the first that had to release an album at that time.

B.G._Bling_Bling

This song had such a big impact that the period after the release has been called the “Bling Bling era”.

From this time on rappers and not only started calling their jewellery pieces bling bling and after a while this expression went into the US dictionaries and became popular all around the world.

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In the Hip Hop world this sentence has been used as a proof of richness and freshness by many rappers that wanted to show off their power and capability of selling songs. The more they sell the more they earn and the more they spend for jewellery.

This brand new movement had a big impact and a battle for the best bling bling started those days.

It has to be said that the “Cash Money Millionaires” (Hot Boys & Big Tymer$) were not the first that have worn ostentatious jewellery during their career. In fact, many rappers have chosen these types of accessories to appear on stage and on the cover of their albums.

One of the most iconic bling bling chains is for sure the Jesus one worn by Biggie Smalls aka The Notorious B.I.G. on the cover his posthumous album “Born Again” of 1999.

born again cover(1999)

Three years before of Biggie was Tupac Shakur in 1996 who wore another piece of high jewellery for the cover of his most sold album “All Eyez On Me”.

all eyez on me cover tupac(1996)

Nowadays most rappers alive desire to purchase unique pieces of jewellery and so they directly contact the jewellery makers in order to ask to produce fully customized products according to their preferences.

One of the first that has done something similar is 50 Cent with his spinning G Unit’s chain.

g unit chain

Then is turn of Jay Z with the “Roc A Fella” chain, a tribute to his label.

jay z roc a fella chain

By the way probably the most customized chain in the history of bling bling could be the one that Rick Ross asked to be made representing his own face.

rick ross chain

In 2010 Kanye West stressed “a bit” the concept of bling bling wearing a golden chain depicting the ancient Egyptian divinity Horus in the video of his song “Power”. He was also spotted wearing it during a visit at Tutankhamon’s sarcophagus.

kanye west horus chain

The “other side of the bling bling moon” is of course represented by rings and grillz.

Talking about rings, there is a funny story that is strictly linked to the creation of the term bling bling.

It was 1999 and Lil Wayne & friends were shooting the video of their hit “Bling bling”. During it there was a scene in which they were performing on a boat and at a certain point something very sad happened. The director of the video Ron Mohrhoof declared that:

“(…) while Juvenile was performing on the boat, he was gesticulating and really giving a performance and because it was a wide shot on a boat he had to move around a lot. He had a brand-new diamond pinky ring on and it literally flung off while he was performing and it went in the bay. Kerplunk! And, gone. There was this look on his face like, -Oh my God, my $30,000 ring just flew off my hand. –(…)”

This was just a quick example of the richness of those guys at that time and their willingness to show it off.

Fortunately this is a happy ending story.

The ring was found and brought back to the owner by the police officers.

Talking about Grillz, instead, are now considered the brand new way of perceiving bling bling.

A lot of rappers started using them back in the ‘80s and they reached popularity during the ‘90s due to the rise of the southern Hip Hop.

Grillz are basically a type of jewellery worn over the teeth and or in substitution of them.

grillz

This new wave of jewels has become so popular that has started to be used also by celebrities such as Kylie Jenner and many more.

kylie jenner grillz

Being a Kardashian is not enough, she is Tyga’s girlfriend and I can clearly say that he is somehow addicted to grillz.

In fact, Tyga, who’s a famous rapper from Compton, has commissioned Ben Baller, a well-known celebrity jeweller, a custom set of mouth bling.

In particular, it’s a grill encrusted with a total of 1.400 diamonds.

With its 18-carat and a price of $45,000 is the most expensive piece that Ben Baller has ever commissioned to design.

Once the product was finished Ben posted a video on of the final result on Instagram that can give you an idea of what I am talking about. You can see the video at this link:

Ben Baller X Tyga grillz

Here you can have also a look at Tyga wearing that master piece.

tyga grillz

Now that I have provided you an historical brief of the evolution of bling bling I would like to conclude using an example that perfectly fits as bridge between Hip Hop jewellery and fashion.

Once again Ben Baller made a unique piece.

This time a master piece that worth $100,000. It’s a Stone Island logo gold and diamond-encrusted chain that Mr. Baller gave to the worldwide known Hip Hop Star Drake.

drake ben baller

The pendant features black, green and canary yellow diamonds with 880 grams of gold.

Not bad at all.

Have a look.

Video_by_ifandco

I don’t really know where this “Bling Bling era” will lead us but for sure it is leading in the same direction as where luxury is going.

High quality and high level of customization are mandatory.

At least the future will be somehow shiny.

Francesco Filippi

Credits:

blkdmnds.com/tyga grillz

collinsdictionary.com/bling-bling

genius.com/blingbling B.G.

globalgrind.com/iconic chains

highsnobiety.com/BenBaller X Drake X Stone Island

hollywoodpress.biz/tygaGrillz

hotnewhiphop.com/TygaGrillz

instagram.com/benballer

instagram.com/ifandco

instagram.com/tyga

manofmany.com/BenBaller X Drake

thefader.com/blingblingStory

tumblr.com/50cent

wikipedia.org/Bling-bling

wikipedia.org/Bling_Bling B.G.

wikipedia.org/Grillz

youtube.com/KanyeWestPower

Do you really “love your curves”?

When fashion is becoming “democratic”

During one of his rare interviews, Zara owner Amancio Ortega has always remarked that his brand strength consists in having quick reactions to consumers’ demands, and no advertising.  Well, maybe  it would have been “Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak out and remove all doubt” also this time.

Let’s go back to last week: the Irish radio speaker Muireann O’Connell posted on her Twitter account last Zara campaign picture with a vitriolic comment – “You have got to be sh**ting me, Zara”. Actually, according to her absolutely Irish red hair and not properly skinny body, it seemed to be so: the leader of the Inditex Group was making fun of her and the majority of us. In fact, where the slogan says “Love your curves,” the models wearing Zara curvy jeans are fitting a size 36.

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Zara jeans campaign – Credits: Twitter

There’s something weird, it’s true. However, thanks to O’Connell’s tweet, a still unknown photo has become viral through social networks – the best place to share criticism and indignation in 21st century. Moving from the ironic “Love curves? Which curves?” to more fervent philippics about anorexia and a bad example for young generations, on the other hand a crowd of suspicions has alluded to a voluntarily ambiguous marketing and communication strategy. You know, there is only one thing in the world worse than being talked about, and that is not being talked about at all.

Whatever the hidden goal, the controversial advertising seemed not to have paid attention to what’s going on in the real fashion world. First the consecration of Victoria’s Secret Angels with their healthy, sexy and feminine silhouettes, then a star named Gigi Hadid has born even if she is a 86-64-89 model. Finally, the giant of fashion editorial industry, Vogue US, celebrates women overcoming the ancient prejudice based on the correlation “skeletons – models”.  The March 2017 cover story is an hymn to beauty and its revolution: starring current fashion and social icons such as above-mentioned Gigi, plus Ashley Graham, Kendall Jenner and the Italian Vittoria Ceretti, what stands out is the motto “No norm is the new norm”.  A trend that Dolce e Gabbana had already caught in their early runways and relaunched during the last Milan Women Fashion Week, when one hundred fifty men and women of every ethnic group, height and size run the catwalk under the hashtag #realpeople.

It looked like stone age, but it was only in 2012 that Dior excluded Jourdan Dunn from the fashion week because of her generous breasts. It’s time for real women to get their revenge.

Back to the last week’s episode, maybe Mr. Ortega and his marketing consultants should take a walk to one of  Zara’s shops in Italy. They would be amazed by the amount of S and XS sizes still on sale.

Alessandra Petagna

Cover ImageVogue Magazine

Sources:

Between taste and tradition: exploring “Cantina Calì”

(hello Claudia, very nice. … So did you do an interview with the owner? You should put in some quotes!!! That would make it really interesting. We can discuss this. )

Hello everyone,

since in my first article I talked about luxury dining in Sicily, today let me introduce you “Cantina Calì”, an extraordinary place in the heart of my region.

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Located in Contrada Salmé, in Vittoria (RG), Cantina Cali is nestled in the territory in which the Calì family has owned a large property for three centuries. This area, that represents one of the most exclusive Sicilian micro territories (what does this mean?), is particularly known for its production of red grapes such as Frappato and Nero d’Avola, but also because it is the only Sicilian geographical area with a Docg and where the “Cerasuolo di Vittoria Docg classico”  is born.

The vineyards where the “Calì” wines are produced are spread ove an area of 15 hectares of land, cultivated in a perfect and traditional way.

The grapevines instead, have a density of plant equal to 5100 fetters for hectare and this density allows to reduce the loss of grapevine and to improve the quality of the grape itself.

After this little description of the territory, it could be interesting to take a look at all the technical wines lines. Indeed, Paolo Calì winery is composed by 7 wines:

For the first, not for quality (what do you mean here?), Mandragola (Vittoria Frappato Doc) and Violino (Vittoria Nero d’Avola Doc) and then, Manene (Cerasuolo di Vittoria Docg classico) a particular wine made up from the union of the previous two ones. Focusing specially on Manene,  we should point out that it was included in l’Espresso’s “Wines of Italy 2017,” where the magazine selected 300 wines and made a classification for its readers. In addition, it also reached the highest category in the rank of “100 wines to preserve.”

Then, there’s the Jazz wine,  made with Frappato and Nero d’avola, but with a bigger percentage of the first one.

From the harvest of 2008, the winery produced Osà! (Vittoria Frappato Doc), a rosé wine slightly sparkling and crisp… definitely my favourite one!!

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Instead, from the harvest of 2014, Cantina Cali started to produce Blues (Grillo IGT): another grape ambassadress of Sicily.

And finally, last but not least, Forfice wine came to life from the harvest of 2011. This wine, a Cerasuolo di Vittoria Docg classico, shows his particularity through its name “Forfice”; ’cause it reminds us of the particular ground made with sand, originated from prehistoric sea dunes, very similar to that of the sea. This peculiarity gives special perfumes and tastes to the wines themselves.


sabbia


Forfice,  won “5 Grappoli” from the prestigious wine guide Bibenda.

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Thanks to the elegance and the perfection of all these wines, they are served in the most important Sicilian dining places, as in the “Duomo” of Ciccio Sultano, an excellent two starred restaurant.

In particular, exceptionally for this restaurant, the winery has created two special wines: The Sbagliato 2014 and the Schinca 2015.

In conclusion to my interview, when I asked to Paolo Calì what are his plans for this year, he said he will be present at Vinitaly 2017 in April, and he also decided to make a tour in the United States in order to further develop his business.

For the near future, he would desire to make a restyling of the bottles’ design and he would love to enlarge its wine lines, creating new typologies in order to exploit more this fantastic vineyard.

Well, if you find this winery interesting, do not miss the opportunity to visit it with the exceptional owner: Paolo Calì.

Claudia Raniolo


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The future of luxury brands: personal platforms and social media.

Do you know what the forced compliance theory is? It describes the unpleasant feeling that results from believing two contrary ideas at the same time, concentrating on the tendency that a person is induced to do something that might be contrary to his or her opinion in order to avoid dissonance.

Not so easy to understand, right? Actually this paradigm is widely used in marketing by inducing consumers to do something for a brand, an action expected to enhance and to amplify their attitudes towards the brand itself.

An important indicator comes from the social media world.

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Few days ago, Snapchat debuted on the stock exchange for a value of 25 billion dollars reconfirming the enormous power this platform has; it is by far the best place to reach the generation Z which is very fragmented and has a huge media consumption.

But how to engage them? Lets analyze this phenomena together.

Burberry planned everyhing in advance.

Art of the Trench, Burberry’s first social network step, was released in October 2009: it main goal was to stimulate the consumers by interacting with the brand itself, focusing on the ability to create content and to bulk a sense of belonging and affinity: anybody had the possibility to became a brand ambassador, posting pictures of themselves wearing Burberry’s clothes.

art-of-the-trench

The brand went forward, leveraging on continuous challanges of innovation, reinventing new customer values, and getting tuned with 21st century technologies.

It was 2010 when Christopher Bailey (chief executive and creative officer of Burberry, ndr) launched the project Burberry Acoustic: consumers could register on live.burberry.com and watch session of performances by new and emerging British bands wearing Burberry garments mixed in with their own clothes.

But all that glitters is not gold. A brand image can be ruined by a poor management of the site in any moment through:

  • Absence of a real daily interaction between the brand and its followers;
  • Lack of a deep and meaningful brand experience by seeing photos of others in the same outfits;
  • Not keeping social networks fresh and relevant.

This push towards social media marketing stands to be a positive one only if it is strictly connected in a customer-focused brand strategy.

Burberry also went beyond live streaming: during the SS 2016 fashion show, with a “public” of 100 million accounts, it shared pictures of the entire collection on Snapchat before its debut on the runway.

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How to take advantages of this super active audience? The brand offered a made-to-order catwalk service, selling runway pieces collection online immediately after the show ended: remeber that the final and ultimate goal is to bring the customers closer to the brand.

The last in.

Few days before the Paris Fashion Week 2017 Céline joined Instagram for the first time, reaching more than 50,000 followers after only one day. The French maison was the only one among all the other luxury brands that had snubbed the power of social media: it was not present  on Twitter and Facebook, something pretty strange for a luxury fashion brand nowadays.

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The capacity to keep these spaces active is fundamental to defining the macro-strategies used (such as coherence, interaction with the public, a dinamic scenary, etc).

The brand is seen as myth, as a lifestyle. It is strongly related with its heritage, proposed and celebrated through evoking a precise way of living.

The new CEO Séverine Merle has brought a more fresh approach to the brand, planning also to open an e-commerce website and test the results of the sales online within the end of the year.

Using the influencers to capitalize more.

An amazing idea came from the minds of Dolce&Gabbana: during their SS 2017 presentation, they manage to make the catwalk alive with diversity, sizes, shapes, ages, races.

Now the audience and the final customers are changed, and also the luxury world must adjust itself.

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A significant number of people appearently unknown, famous on social media, children-of, influencers or bloggers: they weren’t professionals, but the presentation was still unique.

The Tommy x tommy-tmygrl-iphone-1200x1170Gigi collection
made by Tommy Hilfiger in collaboration with the super model Gigi Hadid used Facebook’s first conversational shoppable experience.

It is an artificial intelligence that answers questions about the collection on Facebook Messenger, adds items to the user’s cart, and sends them to tommy.com to complete the purchase. The tool aim is the one of copying some of the features on China’s massively popular and sales app, WeChat.

Of course these partnerships can achieve engagement, but the actual conversion rate to sales is not garanted: only about 1,5% of online sales in 2016 can be attributed to social media, even if 75% of customers discover products there. Brands therefore consider Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat as media and advertising tools, with the hope that they will be also turned into e-commerce platforms.

The fashion, luxury and haute couture sectors are characterized by a strong and intensive presence on the social media. We can define this sociability form as a vertical one, represented by high respondance taxes of users who express in an emotional way the attachment to a brand, without creating a real flow of conversation between each other or the brand.

Even if they’re not buying, your customers want to talk to you and about you.

Burberry films its S/S 2014 show using the iPhone 5S

Anna Bizzozero

References:

BoF

Pambianco

Digital PR

Digiday Publishing Awards Europe

Collection Trends

Burberry

Céline

Dolce & Gabbana