NEW YORK — Renaud Dutreil, chairman of the North American arm of LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton, cycles to work at the LVMH Tower daily and chains his bike to the red, shoe-shaped rack facing Louis Vuitton’s 57th Street flagship here.
Since arriving Stateside to take his post in September, Dutreil has made it one of his missions to further LVMH’s commitment to green initiatives, and to support Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s PlaNYC sustainability agenda and bicycling initiatives. So the former French politician created the “Bike in Style Challenge,” asking students at the Fashion Institute of Technology to come up with a stylish poncho, jacket and travel bag to cycle in.
“There is one big dilemma for bike commuters,” Dutreil said Tuesday at a press conference in the LVMH Tower’s Magic Room. “It is style. There is simply very little bikewear out there that allows you to go fashionably from the street to the office.”
DKNY, which is part of LVMH-owned Donna Karan International, worked with FIT students on the initiative. The brand will develop prototypes of the winner’s designs, but there are currently no plans to manufacture a collection.
At the press conference, LVMH announced the winners of the challenge: Jessica Velasquez took the top prize of $5,000; Jane Carlton was second, with a $3,000 award, and Stephanie Murphy won $2,000 for third place.
The winners were judged by a group that included Dutreil, Donna Karan, Hilary Duff, First Deputy Mayor Patricia E. Harris, city Transportation Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan, Andy Darrell of the Environmental Defense Fund and FIT’s Valerie Steele.
Karan was at the press conference alongside Oscar winner Marion Cotillard, an environmental activist, and Duff, who designs a line for DKNY Jeans.
“It’s really important [to cycle], especially in New York,” Duff said. “It’s so much better for the environment, plus you can get to places quicker. You are also done with your exercise by the end of the day. You don’t need to go to the gym.”
LVMH made an undisclosed grant to the Mayor’s Fund to Advance New York City. LVMH is also a main sponsor of the city’s “Summer Streets” program, which will create a car-free, 6.9-mile route on three Saturday mornings in August.
“Our goal is to bring together fashion and environmental sustainability for a new eco-friendly lifestyle,” Dutreil said.
He pointed to the recent series of Louis Vuitton ads that benefit Al Gore’s climate project, and the investment in Edun, the eco-friendly apparel line founded by Bono and his wife Ali Hewson, as part of the company’s commitment.
Cotillard said of all cities, she cycles most in New York. “I was a bit scared of the traffic at first, but it was actually very easy because it is [in a straight line],” she said. “You know where the cars come from, and I really enjoyed it.”
Cotillard, who is also the face of the Lady Dior campaign and wore Dior at the press conference, hasn’t asked her friend John Galliano to design cycling clothes for her outings. “But it’s an idea,” she said.
From overseeing America’s fastest-growing speciality retailers to codifying cool, WWD talked to the women who are leading the way for the future of beauty. Check out our Instagram Stories to see how these women built today and are creating tomorrow. (📸: @hannah_khymych) #wwdbeauty
For @laperlalingerie's spring 2018 show, the brand chose to host their event at @thevenetianmacao. With Chinese megastars @bingbing_fan and @hubing in attendance, La Perla debuted a rock ‘n’ roll-inspired collection. The show marked the start of Sands Macao Fashion Week, which runs from October 19 to 24 — the city’s first such event. Pictured here are models backstage with glimmering eyes. #wwdfashion (📷: Cheuk-Yin To)
Trending for spring 2018: top stitch design. Gone are the days of stitch just for seams — designers are using the once-minimal detail to create strong decorative elements. (📷: Paola Testa; Styled by @andrew_shang) #wwdfashion
@tradesy is turning the concept of a showroom upside down with its new space in Santa Monica. Here, the company plans to hold events, art exhibits and a showcase rare fashion pieces like this Louis Vuitton boxing set. Get all the details on Tradesy’s first showroom on WWD.com. #wwdnews
Spotted last night at the @erdem x @hm launch event: Kate Bosworth, Rashida Jones, Kirsten Dunst and Selma Blair. The party, which took place in LA, also marked the opening of their pop-up shop. “I was interested in creating a collection that wasn’t in any way disposable. It was about pieces you’d create and keep forever, things that have a permanence to it,” designer Erdem Moralioglu said. #wwdeye (📷: Katie Jones)
Renee Zellweger in yellow in 2001 and again in 2017. Chosen as one of the 12 @pantone Leading Spring Colors (and dubbed “Meadowlark”), it only makes sense that the bright hue stands the test of time and is making a resurgence this season, seen already on stars like @blakelively and @gigihadid. (📷: Donato Sardello & @rexfeatures) #wwdfashion #tbt
Dior’s 70th anniversary celebration continues with a new exhibition at the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto. “Christian Dior,” which is scheduled to run through March 18, takes a look at the founders tenure from 1947 to 1057 and feature 40 designs. Pictured here is an evening gown from the Ailée, fall 1948-49 haute couture collection. #wwdfashion (📷: Brian Boyle)