It’s Time Fashion Schools Got Down to Business

Thomas Tait’s Sketchbook | Source: Thomas Tait

LONDON, United Kingdom — Each year, more than 4,000 design students graduate from fashion colleges across the UK.  But there are only about 500 new jobs available for them, leaving thousands of young designers to move abroad or start their own labels. The vast majority of these have absolutely no business training whatsoever. For Thomas Tait — one of the most buzzed-about new graduates from Central Saint Martins, one of the

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Learning from Puma’s Reduced Environmental Paw Print

Clever Little Bag | Source: Puma

LONDON, United Kingdom — When global sport and lifestyle company Puma decided to redesign its trademark shoe box, it turned to Yves Béhar, industrial designer and founder of fuseproject, a San Francisco-based design and branding firm behind the hundred-dollar Xo laptop and Jawbone headset After 21 months, an evaluation of 40 prototypes, and visits to distribution centres, manufacturing plants, storage facilities and retail points

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Infographic | Where the Wealthy Shop Online

US Wealthy Shoppers Online Source: Signature9

NEW YORK, United States — As we emerge from the ruins of a deep recession, where are wealthy consumers shopping most? An analysis of online traffic statistics for February 2009 to February 2010, gathered from Google Ad Planner, reveals some interesting traffic trends, although these are only based on estimates. The Numbers Macys.com attracts more visitors with an annual income of over $100,000 than the websites of upmarket

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Why Brands Should Focus on Mobile Web, Not Mobile Apps

Mobile Screenshot, RUGBY by Ralph Lauren | Source:

With smartphone adoption rates higher than ever, there has recently been a flurry of activity from fashion brands focused on developing and deploying mobile applications. Today, luxury brands like Hermès, Chanel and Gucci have mobile apps for Apple’s popular iPhone. But far less attention has been paid to developing Mobile Web sites. In this guest post, our friends at PercentMobile explain why investing in the Mobile Web can often

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How Influential are the New Fashion Youth?

Charles Ghislain in Vogue Italia Source: Vogue Italia

NEW YORK, United States — For decades, a quick route to fashion world prominence involved a designer turning a youth culture trend into a runway-ready collection. Calvin Klein made heroin chic, Jean Paul Gaultier sampled from club culture, Marc Jacobs glammed-up grunge and Hedi Slimane turned Berlin punks into fashion plates. The concept was simple, even if the design work wasn’t: find a scruffy outsider style that remained

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In India, Luxury Brands Need Localised Strategies

DLF Emporio, New Delhi | Source: DLF

MUMBAI, India — According to Forbes, India has the fastest-growing population of millionaires in the world. But for Western luxury brands operating in the country, grabbing a piece of the market has proven more difficult than anticipated and many are in the process of re-conceiving their India strategies. Part of the problem is that Western luxury brands don’t seem to understand Indian consumers. When they first entered

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032c | The Magazine that Defied the Downturn

032c Winter 2009-10 | Source 032c

As 032c prepares to mark its tenth anniversary and moves into a new office designed by Arno Brandlhuber/ b&k+, BoF sat down with the magazine’s founder, editor and creative director Joerg Koch to discuss the inner workings and future plans of his title. While there’s no formula for the unique circumstances and hard work that led to 032c’s enviable market position, Koch’s insights provide lessons that both

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HD Cameras and the Video Revolution

NEW YORK, United States — First video killed the radio star, now digital video appears poised to kill off the still photographer. Armed with HD digital video that's ever-higher in quality, photographers can now shoot moving images with the crispness and clarity of still photos. This raises an interesting dilemma for image-makers across art, fashion and advertising alike: why bother with photographs anymore? Earlier this year, a video of Megan Fox in a bathing suit circulated online, followed by a cover story in Esquire magazine featuring images that were outtakes — screen grabs, essentially — from the video. Both were credited to celebrity portrait photographer Greg Williams, whose work has always referenced scenes from movies. But for Esquire, he wasn’t…

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Lessons from the High Street | Brand Culture and the Retail Experience

Teabag Window Display, Anthropologie London | Source: The Business of Fashion

LONDON, United Kingdom — The majority of luxury brands have spent the past fifteen years investing in retail networks in both established and emerging luxury markets. Flagship stores, one more extravagant than the last, were built in Tokyo, New York, Paris, and Beijing. The design directive for these spaces was singular and focused, showcasing exclusive products in an environment which communicated a carefully crafted image to the

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Legal Patterns | On Fashion Copycats

Left: Diane von Furstenberg Spring 2009, right: Mercy Spring 2008 | Source: National Post

Today we introduce Legal Patterns, a new series of articles on BoF exploring fashion and the law. Just as design patterns form the foundation of good fashion design, legal frameworks enable fashion businesses to defend their financial interests and protect their designs. BRUSSELS, Belgium — In the fashion industry, the copycatting of designs is a not a simple issue. Accusations fly in all directions: luxury houses accuse

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Maison Martin Margiela | The Cult of Invisibility – Part Two

In Part 1, we examined how the Maison Martin Margiela brand successfully adopted strategies of impersonality and invisibility to achieve cult status with consumers. Today, we explore how Mr. Margiela’s exit from the company could have been better managed by adopting strategies learned from real-world cults. PARIS, France — In 2002, in an acquisition that was described as Greta Garbo marrying Harpo Marx, the Maison Martin Margiela

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Maison Martin Margiela | The Cult of Invisibility – Part One

Margiela Imagery | Source: Maison Martin Margiela

The industry’s worst kept secret was confirmed this week when Renzo Rosso told Horatio Silva that he was “this close” to appointing a new designer at Maison Martin Margiela. Though Rosso says Margiela will continue to be involved from a distance, the loss of a founding designer at a namesake brand is not an easy transition to make. In the first of a two part series, our friends at Agenda Inc. examine how Maison

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Paris Fashion Week | The Culture of Luxury

Christian Lacroix | Source: NY Daily News

One long-time designer is conspicuously absent from the Paris Fashion Week schedule for Spring/Summer 2010. Indeed, Christian Lacroix’s Haute Couture show in July (pictured above) was billed as possibly his last fashion show ever. But, while rumours continue to swirl of would-be white knight investors to save Lacroix — the latest is Hassan bin Ali al-Nuaimi, a nephew of the ruler of Ajman — BoF investigates the wider

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