This Sunday is the Oscars, which as we all know is the be-all and end-all of red carpet dressing, and may explain the notable lack of Hollywood celebrities at Paris Fashion Week thus far: they’re all back in Hollywood, juicing in order to get their stomachs flat. Or, in fact – and here’s what I am thinking – there may be something else going on. Something that has to do with changing markets, and marketing.
Because in their place we have singers – Rihanna was supposed to be at Balmain on Thursday, but apparently got stuck in traffic (though she did sing at the after-party). She did make it to Lanvin on Thursday night, as did Sharleen Spiteri, and there was that whole Katy-Perry-at-Moschino moment in Milan – and, perhaps more significantly, Asian celebrities.
Indeed, the latter are increasingly the current front row denizens of choice at fashion shows, which is a pretty big reveal about where luxury brands think their consumer bread is buttered.
Lanvin, for example, hosted four. And not only that, they very happily provided notes about who said celebs were and what they wore to the show. To wit:
“XINYUAN ZHANG (#1 Chinese Beauty) – pink metallic taffetas lamé blazer, silver “Dream” liquid lamé t-shirt, gold liquid lamé skirt, and star “Altair” necklace, crystal bracelet, gold stitched cross-body bag, all from the Ete 2014 Runway Collection, and black sandals from the Ete 2012 Runway Collection.
SHISHI LIU (Chinese Actress) – black & white mousse jersey techno cocktail dress with draped décolleté, green lamé tuxedo jacket, and jewelry from the Ete 2014 Runway Collection.
XIANG LI (TV Hostess) – gold liquid lamé cocktail dress with black grosgrain detail, gold brocard shawl collar cropped tuxedo jacket, crystal star “Altair” necklace, mille-crystal “Evening” minaudière, gold python pumps, all from the Ete 2014 Runway Collection.
ANGELA WANG (Chinese Child Star, Daughter of Xiang Li) – tiered red dress, gold lamé coat, and dark blue Petite ballet flats, all from the Ete 2014 “Petite” Collection.”
Ka-ching. Anyway, it seems to me those Hollywood celebs – many of whom are increasingly relying on the income streams generated by fashion and beauty contracts — might watch their backs. After all, as the star/brand relationship is ever-more formally monetised, you put your investment where your capex is. And the winner is….