Are you even a designer if you haven’t collaborated yet? Expect everything in the world of fashion and lifestyle - it's dreamy and awe-striking grandeur wants to be savoured by all, from elites to the general mass. Collaboration is seen as two powerhouses or more, one less and one more, influential person and a brand coming together to show how both merged creatives would be, even if one isn’t involved in designing. While some haven’t been great, most of them have been extremely popular. These limited editions pieces can’t be seen lingering in online stores and showrooms, often selling out in a matter of hours but some only to be found being restocked again. So, are collaborations the new techniques to feed market hunger and customer satisfaction? Or, are they new marketing keys to remain in business?
Collaborations between big, luxury names are always an instant hit. Designer Vivienne Westwood’s capsule collection for Burberry let those iconic checks get a predictably punk touch - an offbeat British elegance. Very recently, designer Alexander Wang, a favourite of cool and chic silhouettes and Bvlgari - another epitome of luxury and elegance collaborated on limited edition handbags to be released during New York Fashion Week, focussing on the Serpentine trend culture. That’s where collaborations help, fusing and blending two different themed design aesthetics into one culture. Not only are collabs on rage, even there have been constructed business meant solely for this purpose. Based on this, Moncler launched a business structure entirely centred on multiple collaborations- Pierpaolo Piccioli, Simone Rocha and Craig Green in the starting phase. Not only it fastened in generating market values, but it also helped Moncler attain a genius title. The similar idea was followed by Tods into launching Tod’s Factory with its cornerstone lying at non-seasonal collaborations. Are capsule collections the latest breathing element to remain significant?
The next alliance in-line and on fury are celebrity, celebrity-designer or family-celebrity collections. Stella McCartney and Taylor Swift collaboration is a ‘Lover’s paradise, just like the title. The collection features tie-dyed tees, sweatshirts, limited edition bomber jackets in bold and bright sustainable materials. The most common name that rampages and breaks records at celebrity or family-celebrity collections are the Kardashian-Jenner lines. Be it KKW Beauty, Kylie Cosmetics, Kylie Skincare, Kendall + Kylie, KKW Fragrance, Poosh along with their family collaborations KKW Fragrance with Kylie Jenner, Koko Kollection by Kylie Cosmetics, KKW X Kylie - their every collection with a lot of K’s is both a market and customer favourite, letting all have a dose of the Kardashian glam.
If you think collaborations are just a new thing, it isn’t. Flipping pages of history, released during the last 1930s, was the Salvador Dalí and Elsa Schiaparelli’s Lobster Dress. The Yves Saint Laurent x Piet Mondrian A-Line shift dress marked the 20th-century high-end collaboration breakthroughs. They all marked the initial collision happening at the house of fashion. Fashion has developed into a trillion-dollar business. Every day, a new designer is discovered, a fashion student graduates, new brands develop and this business of fashion has turned into a study and analytical material. It's a hard task being in the constant pressure to create new creatives every day, tackling sustainability and remaining consistent in this competition. Maybe, these collaborations and capsule collections are a win-win situation to remain in the game. Or, do they all have another secret to hide behind this facade?
Story by: Tejashee Kashyap - Intern at L'officiel India