When it comes to selling jeans, celebrities matter.
“It’s no longer aspirational, it’s an actionable moment,” said Susan Kaufman, editor of People StyleWatch, who explained that when women see celebrities wearing certain jeans brands in the magazine, they go out and buy them for themselves.
A study People StyleWatch conducted among 2,000 women between the ages of 18 and 49 found that three-quarters of them are influenced by celebrities more than ever before. Sixty-six percent said it feels good to see a celebrity they admire wear something they would wear; 74 percent said they get ideas from celebrities even if they don’t realize it; 76 percent said celebrities have more impact on fashion today, and 61 percent said they get style ideas from celebrity photographs rather than runway models.
Kaufman believes women relate more to celebrities, whom they feel they know and who come in different shapes and sizes from a skinny 5-foot, 10-inch model they don’t know and by whom they are intimidated.
Also, three-quarters of the women surveyed said they would pay more for something if a celebrity were wearing it; 40 percent said that seeing a celebrity wearing something is like a recommendation from a stylish friend, and four in 10 women have purchased a product because they saw a celebrity wear it.
“They will pay more for premium denim if they see a celebrity wearing it,” said Kaufman. “They might not be able to afford a $2,500 Gucci bag — that’s serious aspiration — but they can afford a $150 jean, or a $255 jean, and they’re buying into that dream and that validation that they get from the celebrity wearing it,” said Kaufman.
“When we run our denim stories and do reporting on a brand, and which celebrities are wearing them, those jeans sell out,” said Kaufman, who added that the magazine is planning a Denim Awards issue in November.
Kaufman also believes that celebrities make new trends understandable. Women often get intimidated by new silhouettes and new shapes. When People StyleWatch took a poll after skinny jeans hit the market in 2004, it found that 90 percent of the women surveyed said “no way” to skinny jeans. The magazine started doing stories and showed how celebrities were wearing skinny jeans and what tops they were wearing with them. Six months later, 50 percent said they would wear skinny jeans, and within a year, 99 percent were wearing skinny jeans.
Kaufman said her office is sent 300 pictures a day of celebrities. Within one week, she’ll have at least 100 images of celebrities in jeans. In the April issue alone, there were 76 celebrity IDs for jeans, and 13 brands represented. There were 39 credits from one brand, which she declined to name, but later revealed it started with a J. (Hello, J Brand.) She said it’s a missed opportunity for a vendor if a celebrity photo runs without a credit.
Kaufman cited some additional statistics from her study, such as the fact that women said jeans were the second most important thing that they can’t live without, behind their cell phone, and are the item they are most likely to splurge on, behind shoes. “Some 48 percent of women said they are more excited getting jeans on sale than having sex,” she said.
“Azzedine has been one of the biggest influences in my life. He has always been such a strong, loving, fatherly figure to me. I call him Papa. His designs are indescribably unique, they are pieces of art. He knew how to make the female form look its loveliest. I have so many memories of him; my favorite might be during my first show with him in Paris. He liked me and he wanted to help me get more work. He called all his friends at Kenzo and Comme des Garcons, and asked them to book me. They said, ‘But she can’t walk!’ And he said, ‘but she has such a great ass!' His friendship and support has been the great privilege of my career. I can't imagine life without him. Repose en paix mon Papa.” - @stephanieseymour tells @wwd. #wwdfashion (📷: @steveeichner) #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa, flanked by two of his closest friends, models Stephanie Seymour and Naomi Campbell.
He designed Seymour’s dress for her 1995 wedding to Peter Brant, and treated Campbell (who famously called him Papa), like a daughter. For more on the legendary designer, tap the link in bio. #wwdfashion #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa's “I-did-it-my-way” ethos stood out starkly at a time when brands are experimenting with consumer-facing fashion shows, coed formats and trans-seasonal collections – anything to perk up lackluster sales of ready-to-wear in an age of Insta-everything. “It’s not creation anymore. This becomes a purely industrial approach,” the late designer told WWD in an interview last year. “But anyway, the rhythm of collections is so stupid. It’s unsustainable. There are too many collections.” Read more about the iconic designer’s life and work on wwd.com, link in bio. #wwdfashion #azzedinealaia (📷: @WWD Archive, 1986) #alaia
Sneaker reselling app @goat’s latest exhibit, "The Greatest: New York," tells the story of New York's sneaker culture. To celebrate the exhibit, an intimate crowd gathered on Thursday night at the pop-up gallery space, located at Platform in Culver City, to hear guest speaker and illustrator @esymai talk about her own rise in streetwear and women in the business. "For me I'm just someone who is creative. I like to create things," said Chang. #wwdfashion
Azzedine Alaïa, one of the most iconic couturiers of the modern era whose body-con designs defined Eighties fashion, has died in Paris. The diminutive Tunisian-born designer, known for his structured knitted dresses with fitted waists and impeccably cut, figure-hugging second skin silhouettes was deeply admired by his peers, and counted supermodel Naomi Campbell - his adoptive daughter - among his inner circle, one of a gang of glamazons including Farida Khelfa, Carla Bruni and Stephanie Seymour who became ambassadors of his style. (📷: Alexandre Guirkinger) #wwdblast