When it comes to high fashion houses with a reputation for innovation, several may come to mind right away. When you think about high fashion brands that have a long and storied history, several others may come to mind. However, there are a few fashion brands that manage to fit into both categories. These are houses that produce not just unique clothes with each collection, but who deliver a true lifestyle brand experience to their devotees. Here is how these fashion houses do it.
Commitment to the Past
Fashion houses distinguish themselves from the crowd by having a unique and recognizable style. Something like an Armani suit or a Dolce & Gabbana gown can be spotted a mile away, both on and off the runway. The collections may change each year, but the lines, tailoring, and traditional colors that set each brand apart often stay the same. That brings a comforting sense of trust that whatever comes down the runway next will fit well within what the fashion house is known to do best.
Some brands go further and pay tribute to the history or appearance of their local areas through the use of designs or materials. One example of this is Dolce & Gabbana’s Alta Moda collection, which is inspired by the Italian Renaissance. Each piece is handmade by Italian artisans to retain the authenticity that customers have come to expect from the brand name, while honoring the traditions and scenery of the company’s native Italy.
Honoring the values and designs of the past can give clothing a timeless feel. It can also turn wearing items into an experience rather than just a necessity. It affirms that the wearer respects the time and talent that went into creating each piece. It also allows customers to showcase their taste and values in the pieces that they choose to purchase. At a time when “fast fashion” is becoming the norm, a devotion to tradition is a refreshing alternative.
Dedication to the Future
No fashion house can survive by only repeating the designs of yesterday, however. Being able to adapt to changing trends and pull in new clients is a requirement for success. It’s not enough to deliver well-made clothing anymore. More and more, clients are looking for pieces that will stand up to the test of time, and that follow current fashion trends. Long gem-studded ballgowns are a hard sell to today’s young adults who may want shorter skirts and more “everyday” wear options.
Clients are also looking for clothing that is made ethically. This is where a brand can easily go from just a label to a lifestyle brand. Demonstrating core values that are shared by clients, such as paying workers a living wage, following high design and manufacturing requirements, and using responsibly-sourced fabrics and materials, can make clients feel good about wearing the clothes and feel more connected to the brand. This can in turn drive loyalty and create on-going success for the fashion house.
Lifestyle brands go beyond simply making products for people to use. These brands uphold shared values with their customers and make products that enhance the lives of their customers. A high end fashion lifestyle brand does this by making high quality clothing that both stands out and fits in with customers’ lives. Many top fashion houses have already made this transition, and others are sure to follow soon. Some have even branched out into other industries, such as fragrances, make-up, and home goods. The next time you’re looking to spice up your closet, purchasing from a high end lifestyle brand may be just what you need.