Bottega Veneta

In yet another sign that the balance of power between designers and the brands and Groups that employ them may be shifting in the designer’s favour, today Kering announced it had entered into a Joint Venture with Tomas Maier (left), aka the creative director of Bottega Veneta, aka the man who made that brand into the second largest luxury brand in the Kering stable, and the fastest growing, to develop his own brand, entitled – guess – Tomas Maier! Still, Mr Maier founded his brand in 1997 and joined Bottega in 2001. So why is this happening now? Read more

There’s a really interesting study out today from the Digital Luxury Group. Based on data from over 31 million searches on Google, Bing, Yandex and Bai du, as conducted in Brazil, China, France, Germany, India, Italy, Japan, Russia, the UK and US, it looked at which American luxury brands were the most popular globally (based on search, natch, not sales). The results would probably surprise you, especially when it comes to who’s on top, and emerging markets. Read more

Today at their AGM PPR came out and did two things that I don’t think any other luxury brand has done so far: publicly put its money where its mouth is, officially committing to a group of specific environmental goals for the Group to reach by 2016 and announcing them for all to see (and measure, and wave critically in the air in the company fails to fulfill them), and financially committing to a carbon off-shoot company by buying a 5% stake in Wildlife Works Carbon and getting a seat on the management committee. It all sounds great, but what does it really mean?
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Cheering emails have been landing in my in-box with a noteworthy regularity this week – and I am not referring to, as you might expect, those idiotic e-christmas cards that seem to be the latest trend. Rather, I mean actual bits of news that are like stocking stuffers of gifts because of the optimism they engender. What are these glittering gewgaws? Proof that luxury is taking a more pro-active approach to ever-greening their business.
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At this point, the fact that cotton prices are soaring is a truism, and that what this means in fashion terms is that the higher prices for raw materials will become higher prices for retail, but there’s an interesting story today about polyester getting a knock-on boost: as manufacturers search elsewhere for material, demand for the man-made rises. Read more

So here’s a question: will 2010 have sounded the death knell of premium denim, or will it experience a revival in 2011? Should Diesel’s Renzo Rosso be quaking in his boots? Read more

Now that Tom Ford’s super-secret women’s wear collection has been unveiled in every single glossy magazine there is, and a video of his super-secret runway show has made it on-line, the last super-secret The Great Stubbled One had left was where he got that brilliant idea to keep everything so super-secret the rest of the world couldn’t help talking about. Well, thanks to the New Yorker, it’s not a secret anymore.

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