Entries in Portfolio (9)
Bought a selection of nail polish before the holidays. Picked colors that may work as exterior colors for the Aston Martin x Lanvin project I'm working on. Experimented a bit with mixing some of the colors together for new shades.
I believe presentation is super important. It has to be something that will stand out on someone's desk and interesting enough so one wants to open and explore its contents. As I love working with textiles, my design involves a simple sleeve of organic cotton canvas.
Outside is screen printed in fluorescent pink with houndstooth pattern, my website and short text describing my style. The interior is lined with mid weight, bright lime cotton. The sides are left raw for a natural, frayed look. As I have plenty of snap buttons, I used these as my enclosure.
Inside each sleeve is a series of 4"x6" photo prints of my projects, short self intro and business card.
I've tried laser cutting the exterior artwork, but it does not compare to the visual impact of bright pink ink. The entire process took much longer than expected. I had a hard time screening on the canvas, usually needing 2 passes of ink instead of just 1, which usually results in too much ink and less refined lines. The sewing took an entire day to make 24.
I already have a new idea for a different design that will be much more time efficient to make. Looking forward to that once this batch is used up.
Understanding the customer is important design process for any company. In thinking about the target customer for my Aston Martin x Lanvin project, it's quite easy to focus on the Chinese market. Obviously, to afford an Aston Martin, one must be quite wealthy, but there are wealthy people all over the world. China has had a rising luxury market and it is still going strong. These are the successful entrepreneurs the likes of QQ, corrupt politicians and their children, celebrities...
Here's an article documenting findings of Bain & Company’s China Luxury Market Study for 2010. In 2009, Chinese spent US$10.2 billion in luxury goods last year,not including that spent outside the country. They estimate sales will increase by 23% in 2010.
An interesting article by Fast Company, Selling to China's Luxury Market 101, breaks down luxury buyers into 4 types. I would say my client profiles would be LUXURY INTELLECTUALS, with a hint of LUXURY LOVERS (more on the women's side).
In her interview with LUXURYCULTURE.com, she expressed how many wealthy Chinese who are already familiar with western brands are now seeking pieces that reflect their heritage.
I need one more automotive project for my portfolio. It's another color+trim design based on collaboration of two luxury brands, Aston Martin X Lanvin.
Why luxury? Because that's where I want to be and I need more of that in my portfolio.
Why Aston Martin? Because of its beauty. And because I found some great high resolution images of the V8 Vantage that I can use as a base. After all, the point is to concentrate on color+trim design, not exterior or interior car design which is not my expertise.
Now the next question is which fashion house makes sense as a collaboration with Aston Martin? Bottega Veneta is the first brand that comes to mind. It makes great sense and a perfect match. But then again, too perfect, and too safe.
What about Maison Martin Margiela? Still luxury, but opposite of conservative Bottega Veneta. Looking at their past and current lines, at first I did not know how to sum it up. It's not like Louis Vuitton or Gucci where you repeat their logo all over for instant brand recognition. Although I'm intrigued, I can't quite grasp how to design like MMM. But a recent conversation with a fashion designer friend clarified it. Maison Martin Margiela is highly conceptual. It actually comes across as a bit sporty as well. Doing more research on Martin Margiela, it is sad that he no longer designs for the brand. Pairing MMM with Aston Martin can be very interesting but my research into Lanvin makes the latter brand even more appealing.
Maison Martin Margiela Interview
Why Lanvin? First off, Lanvin shares the same values as Aston Martin: excellent craftsmanship and respect for tradition. It is really reading about Alber Elbaz, Art Director of Lanvin, that really draws me to the brand. I am drawn to his story and passion, his long road to success after 20 years in the fashion industry. Shaw-Lan Wang, Taiwanese business women, publisher and owner of Lanvin, saw his talent and hired him to be Art Director, after being dismissed at YSL (Tom Ford takeover) and at a time when LVMH thought his work to be "unexciting." Although I cannot compare myself to Elbaz, I relate to such tough times as I am currently experiencing just that. I know I am talented and can bring a lot to the table in many industries. With continued persistence and hard work, I will eventually get there. But before my next opportunity comes, it can be discouraging. Reading his story gives me new assurance that I will eventually get to where I want to be.
Alber Elbaz with Interview Magazine
At Lanvin, Talent Is Vindicated
Although this is a project I am undertaking on my own and can do whatever I wish, it still needs to 1) benefit my portfolio and 2) be believable in reality. Research is necessary to understand what Aston Martin and Lanvin is about in order to design successfully. Another note about incorporating luxury fashion in an auto project is to add on some lifestyle / fashion accessories later, great opportunity to expand my portfolio.
I started documenting key words about these two brands. Next step is mood boards showing customer profile and concepts. It will be an aggressive time line as I aim to complete this week, in time for networking at Designer's Day of the L.A. Auto Show next week.
Understanding Lanvin Homme, interviews with their head designer Lucas Ossendrijver: