Thom Browne’s version has a mirrored silver exterior and red, white and blue stripes on the inside. Zac Posen chose an ombré tone for outside and dashes of maroon sparkles for the interior.
No, these aren’t the latest designs for spring — they’re one-of-a-kind designer edition 2014 Infiniti Q50 cars that the designers created for Gilt and Infiniti.
This story first appeared in the September 18, 2013 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
The luxury sedans, which are priced at $75,000 each, will be sold on Gilt.com on Dec. 12 with a portion of the proceeds benefiting St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, a charity personally selected by both designers. The buyers will also receive $10,000 of shopping credit on Gilt as well as a style consultation.
“They wanted a men’s designer and a women’s designer and I was the lucky men’s designer,” said Browne, who was pleased to have the “flexibility to do something different. [I was able to] marry my collection with the Infiniti and create a very masculine car.” The chrome exterior is as reflective as a mirror and was designed as a playful way to “reflect the individuality of the customer,” Browne said. “I went into this project almost as if I was designing a bespoke suit. Everything is made-to-measure, from selecting the materials and colors, to tailoring the upholstery to fit the curves and lines of the interior, and also making sure that the hallmarks of my design aesthetic are still reflected throughout.”
Posen pushed the envelope even further by designing his car with a light-silver, matte finish in the front and ending in dark gray with a high-gloss finish at the rear. The interior includes velvet, shagreen and leather in rich shades of red that mimic Posen’s red-carpet fashions.
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Posen chose the ombré effect to “emphasize the movement of the car. It’s never been done before and was very challenging, but we experimented and finally figured out how to do it with over 30 coats of paint. It felt sleek and sultry.”
Both vehicles also offer a surprise twist. In the trunk of the Thom Browne car are two custom-made trunks with a leather exterior accented with his signature patriotic stripe and the full-blown red, white and blue interior pattern. Posen said he chose to “pimp the ride” by etching his name into the back window. “I gave it a personal wink,” he said.
For those not able to pony up $75,000 for the cars, the designers created complementary limited-edition accessories. Browne’s is a solid sterling silver personal card case with a red, white and blue stripe that will retail for $650 and Posen’s is a smartphone clutch in a red that matches the car. The bag will sell for $250. Only 100 of the card cases have been produced and there will be 350 of the clutches. Both will also be available for sale on Gilt.com on Dec. 12.
The cars will be showcased at five Gilt City shopping events this fall in special concept rooms that were also designed by Posen and Browne. The road show kicks off in Dallas on Sept. 28 and then travels to Chicago, New York, Miami and Los Angeles.
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