Friday, 4 May 2012

A Panel Discussion with Pamela Church Gibson, Daniella Helayel and Lucy Wood

Henny and Jana welcomed the audience

Many thanks to Pamela Church Gibson for chairing the discussion, and to Lucy Wood and Daniella Helayel for sharing their opinions and experiences, as well as engaging in a conversation with the audience. If you attended the Celebrity Marketing in Luxury Communications event, we would love to hear your thoughts. If you missed out, there is a new event coming up on the 16th - details to follow shortly.

To find out more about Pamela, Lucy and Daniella, please see the biographies below.

Pamela, Lucy and Daniella discussing their
opinions with the audience.

Pamela Church Gibson
Lecturer at London College of Fashion, author of Fashion and Celebrity Culture
Pamela Church Gibson is a reader in Cultural and Historical Studies at the London College of Fashion. She has published extensively on film, fashion, fandom, history and heritage. Edited anthologies include The Oxford Guide to Film Studies (OUP, 1998), Fashion Cultures: Theories, Explorations, Analysis (Routledge, 2000) and More Dirty Looks: Gender, Power, Pornography (BFI Publishing, 2004). Her most recent publications are the monograph Fashion and Celebrity Culture (Berg, 2011) and essays on the ‘celebrification’ of the contemporary art world, in Look at Me: Celebrity at the Venice Biennale (eds. Sich & Schieren, Arnoldsche 2011) and The Artist as Superstar: Tracey Emin & Paolo Vezzoli in the anthology Art and Fashion (ed. Pedroni, Milano, May 2012). Her next project will look at the targeting of ‘young adult‘ women, the schisms this has caused within contemporary feminism, and the extraordinarily lucrative nature of the ‘franchise films ‘ aimed so successfully at this particular demographic. 

Daniella Helayel
Founder and Designer, Issa London
Brazilian-born Daniella Helayel is the founder and designer behind Issa London, the British-based ready-to-wear label that is known for creating dresses that make everyday women feel comfortable, confident and chic. Born and raised in Brazil, Daniella moved to away to study at F.I.T in New York, before settling in London in 1999, whereupon she launched Issa. Despite its “Issa for all!” motto, the label quickly became favourite among celebrities, and over the years, Issa has grown its customer base to include stars like Madonna, Scarlett Johansson, Sharon Stone, Jennifer Lopez, Keira Knightley and Kirstin Davis. Today, Issa is also famed for its connection to Kate Middleton, a relationship that was highlighted when Duchess of Cambridge wore an Issa gown to announce her engagement to Prince William.

Lucy Wood
Fashion News Editor, LOOK Magazine
The University of the Arts London alumni started her career at Grazia magazine in 2005, joining the team as a Fashion News and Features Assistant after completing a BA (Hons) in Fashion Promotion: Journalism at the London College of Fashion. In 2007, Lucy left Grazia to become Fashion News Editor at LOOK Magazine – one of the UK’s biggest selling women’s glossy titles. Lucy has also contributed to Random Magazine, London Metro, Carnaby Street Magazine, Hannah Marshall, Sophie Gittins, and many other publications, companies and designers. Since early 2009, readers can follow Lucy’s blog Fashion Editor, where she reflect on everything from the latest ‘It’ bags, product launches, parties and fashion weeks to red carpet press releases, collection previews and TopShop’s new must-haves.

Lucy Wood and Daniella Helayel

Sunday, 29 April 2012

Celebrity Marketing in Luxury Communications

We are proud to announce our upcoming event, Celebrity Marketing in Luxury Communications: The arising challenges and opportunities of celebrity endorsement in the modern marketing mix. Guests include Daniella Helayel, the Founder and Creative Director of Issa, and Lucy Wood, the Fashion News Editor at Look Magazine. The discussion will be chaired by Pamela Church-Gibson, lecturer at London College of Fashion and author of "Fashion & Celebrity Culture". 

The details of the event are as follows:

Date: 1st May 2012
Time: 18:30 to 20:30
Location: London College of Fashion, 272 High Holborn, London WC1V 7EY
Room: G05

Free entrance for members of the University of the Arts London Retail & Luxury Goods Club. An admission fee of £5 will be applied for non-members, and can be paid at the door. 

Students of the University of the Arts London are encouraged to join the Club prior to the event, via the Student Union.  

For more information and to RSVP to the event, please visit our Facebook event page

We look forward to seeing you on Tuesday!

Saturday, 28 April 2012

THE VOGUE FESTIVAL: Bringing the Vogue brand to life

Overlooking a rainy and chilly weekend, London was the setting of what aims to become one of the most important dates in the world’s fashion calendar: The Vogue Festival. The concept, initiated by editor-in-chief Alexandra Shulman, brought together the fashion elite, including top models, leading designers, fashion-forward stylists, photographers and other key players in the fashion industry. From the perfect image of Tom Ford to eco-trendy Stella McCartney, each one of the speakers was a leader in their field, filling the theatre with inspiration and admiration.

The two-day event, organised in association with Vertu – pioneer and leading manufacturer of luxury mobile phones – was held at the Royal Geographical Society in South Kensington and included seven in-formal ‘in conversation with’ talks, five panel discussions and one Q&A session. The sold-out event also featured four educational seminars. Unfortunately these were filled on a first come, first served basis, leaving a greater part of the attendees with a sense of disappointment.

The festival, or rather fashion conference, inaugurated with a tête-á-tête between Christopher Bailey and Alexandra Shulman. Going against all stereotypes of the ‘fashion diva’, Bailey’s down-to-earth approach quickly won over the hearts of the audience, confirming a fact we long suspected: Bailey is undoubtedly the most talented and charismatic designer of his generation. The session went on to present some of the industry’s success stories, as Lucinda Chambers, Vogue fashion director, Marigay McKee, Harrods fashion and beauty director, Matthew Williamson and Russell Marsh, casting director, shared memories from their lives in fashion. Closing the first session was Nigella Lawson, who chatted to the free-spoken Kirsty Young, discussing women and food – perhaps the most complicated relationship throughout times.

Friday afternoon continued with a glamorous touch of Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana who presented their current campaign; Famiglia, in conversation with noone else but Shulman herself. “Family is a universal unity where one can feel the warmth of love”, said Gabbana, as the designers highlighted the value of family and friends. The Italian duo also talked about working together after ending their personal relationship, the closing of the D&G line and the new focus on the main line, Dolce & Gabbana. The afternoon continued with an interesting panel discussion with Lisa Armstrong, Laura Bailey, Edi Campbell, Pixie Geldof, Mary Portas and Anne Robinson. These six beautiful and intelligent women of different generations discussed whether fashion has an age limit, with colourful references to mini-skirts, the obsession with youth, the importance of trimming and the option of Botox. The final conversation was without doubt the cherry on top of the afternoon, as Stella McCartney was interviewed by her long-time friend, actress Kate Hudson. With their unique ability to laugh about themselves, the artistic twosome recounted the McCartney-designed dress that Hudson wore to the Oscar’s in 2001, and which scored her a place on every ‘worst dressed’ list possible. Of course, McCartney also spoke about her ethical values, the support of PPR and the relationship with her creative team that “lets her have children and a personal life”.

Saturday kicked off with the Queen of ‘wrap dresses’, the iconic Diane von Fürstenburg, who shared her experience of building and rebuilding her own brand. The morning session continued with Tim Walker and former Vogue fashion editor Kate Phelan, who spoke about casting the right model, the importance of the location and what really makes it a fashion photograph. Legendary photographer David Bailey then took the stage in a conversation with Vogue’s features director Jo Ellison, and talked about his difficult school years, his megalomaniac friends and how he never got along with feminists. “I had a terrible time with feminists in the Seventies”, Bailey told Ellison, “They hated me, those women. I think they hated everything”.

The event’s last session started with the sexiest figure in fashion, Tom Ford, who himself may not be on the good side of the feminist movement. The flawless Texan had a heart-to-heart with Shulman, discussing various topics from how he got his first job (which included stalking a woman who hired him because he had beautiful hands) to his obsession with perfection (especially when things bear his name). The shameless Ford even asked the British editor if she had ever slept with a woman – much to her embarrassment. Later on, the stage was lit up by graceful beauty in the presence of models Lily Cole, Jourdan Dunn, Eva Herzigova and Natalia Vodianova. These four well-known faces shared model secrets with the also astonishing Calgary Avansino, executive fashion director at Vogue. The models reminisced about the beginning of their careers, discussed the differences between the past and present in modelling and talked about food issues related to the profession. Vodianova’s attempt to highlight that models generally live a healthy lifestyle turned wrong as the model claimed that “being skinny is better than being fat” – a statement that has now gone viral. Did Vodianova mean to be tactless? We don’t think so. Should she think before she speaks? Oh, yes. The closing debate focused on the red carpet, featuring the opinions of vintage expert William Banks-Blaney, photographer Richard Young, stylist Rachel Zoe and actress Joely Richardson. The dialogue underlined the challenges of the red carpet, from lighting to choosing the right outfit. Also discussed was how difficult it has become to create an exceptional look that creates a real buzz, both from a stylist and a photographer standpoint.

Needless to say, the Vogue Festival was a great success, leaving fashionistas more infatuated with the Vogue brand than ever. In an interview with the University of the Arts London Retail & Luxury Goods Club, Imran Amed of The Business of Fashion stated: “The Vogue Festival event extends the Vogue brand into a whole different space in the way it brings it to life. Previously Vogue was a magazine, then a website. Now, it can also be seen as an event where Vogue readers can have a dialogue with not just designers and photographers but also with the editors whose names they recognize from the magazine but who they maybe don’t know as people, and I think Vogue editors are doing a great job in moderating the conversations.  So in general, what is great about it is that is just brings the Vogue brand to life”.

Written by Luis Roberto Ortega and Melina Notkina

Alexandra Shulman, editor-in-chief
Bringing the Vogue brand to life

The fabulous Tom Ford
Is it all about the red carpet?

Tuesday, 24 April 2012

Collaboration with LSESU Business Society

Earlier this year, the UAL Retail & Luxury Goods Club had the pleasure of collaborating with London School of Economics and Political Science, offering our members a unique opportunity to attend the LSESU Business Society Entrepreneurship Speaker Series events. These events included presentations by Andrew Bone, Director of International Relations at DeBeers; Wilfried Guerrand, Europe Director, Hermès and Thierry Outin, UK Director, Hermès; Chris Hollis, Head of Financial Communications, LVMHThierry Lamouroux, Marketing Director, Cartier and Laetitia Henry, Human Resources Director, Cartier

Even though the UAL Retail & Luxury Goods Club was founded originally for students of the UAL, we believe that by extending our network to include other universities, it allows students to network and create relationships across different areas in similar industries, which creates a unique platform upon graduation. Working together with LSESU Business Society was a great opportunity to bring together the networks of the two universitites, and we would like to extend our thanks to Lai-Yee Pak for organising the events. We are already looking forward to our next collaboration. 

Past events: 2011

Luxury in the Digital Space

This speaker event explored how luxury brands can fully harness the power of social media platforms and other digital initiatives. The speakers included Lauri Vela, a top specialist in Customer Relationship Management and digital space, currently working as the Associate Director in Digital, e-Commerce and CRM at Richemont S.A, as well as Simon Thorogood, London College of Fashion Research fellow specialising in fashion and technology, fashion presentation and the application of interactive fashion experience. 

Luxury in the Digital Space
Lauri Vela, speaker at the Luxury in the Digital Space event
Shushan Karapetyan, Emily Huggard and Shradha Kaul,
 founders of UAL Retail & Luxury Goods Club

Luxury and Sustainability

The Luxury and Sustainability event looked at how luxury brands become more ethically-driven without having to sacrifice quality, style or their aspirational appeal. The subject was discussed by looking at the supply chain, emphasising the benefits of using higher priced, high-quality cotton in fashion manufacturing.
 From a marketing perspective, the importance of commitment to sustainable excellence was explored, focusing on how responsible decisions can lead to building stronger luxury brands, having more satisfied customers and creating a better planet. The speakers for this event included, Patrick Lane, Director of Corporate Relationships at World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), as well as Orsola de Castro, Creative Director at From Somewhere; co-founder and co-curator of The British Fashion Council's ethical initiative Estethica at London Fashion Week. 

Orsola de Castro and Patrick Laine,
speakers at the Luxury and Sustainability event
Luxury and Sustainability Speaker Event