Hollywood’s obsession with lingerie kicked into high gear this year, and even more deals are anticipated in 2005.
Tinseltown met Seventh Avenue with high-profile names from the music, TV and movie industries, helping to create a new genre of celebrity lingerie: JLo Lingerie by Jennifer Lopez at The Warnaco Group; Pamela Anderson Intimates at Vandale Industries; Australian supermodel Elle Macpherson, whose Elle Macpherson Intimates collection will make its debut in North America in spring 2005, and Jessica Simpson, whose multilevel master licensing deal with JS Brand Management is expected to include intimate apparel for the back-to-school season.
Adding to the demand for celebrity-status undergarments are other sex symbols. They include Paris Hilton, Anna Nicole Smith, Jaime Pressly, supermodel-turned-actress Rachel Hunter, and seductive songstress Christina Aguilera, who are shopping for intimate deals, according to licensors and manufacturers.
Robert Stone, president of StoneAmerica Licensing, said actress Amanda Bynes, who starred in “What a Girl Wants” and “Big Fat Liar,” is among the newest players angling for a celebrity licensing franchise. “She’s looking to expand her name with fashion apparel in the junior market to midtier and better department stores. We’re looking to co-brand her name with a designer,” said Stone, noting that bodywear and active-related separates are planned.
Neal Hamil, executive vice president of Ford Models, said there is an insatiable appetite for licenses for women’s lingerie and men’s underwear that have a star quality.
“Lingerie is still a very hot area for sexy supermodels, actors and athletes,’’ Hamil said. “I do not see that ever changing. They just look great in their BVDs, and their fans identify with them and want to emulate them. It’s the same concept as fragrance and athletic gear.
“There are Ford clients who are very interested in the lingerie arena,” Hamil said. “Rachel Hunter has a new licensing deal in the U.K. called Ultima, and after ‘Gilligan’s Island’ [a new reality show] in which she plays Ginger, there should be additional interest in her in the U.S. market. Lindsay Lohan would be a natural for this category as she has such a beautiful face and figure. And as far as Paris Hilton goes, she’s still interested. The kid is an industry.”Regarding Ford’s roster of male clients who are seeking a lingerie liaison, Hamil said, Marcus Schenkenburg is also a natural. Our newest client, super sexy tennis star Mark Philippoussis — ‘The Scud’ — is perfect as well. He has launched his own line of men’s wear in his native Australia under the MP label, and an underwear collection is planned.”
While there is hunger for celebrity-status pacts, a new twist is taking shape for celebrity-linked lingerie: the entertainment diva spokeswoman. The idea took off in 2002 when Queen Latifah ignited lingerie exposure for full-figured women as the spokeswoman for the Curvation bra brand by VF Corp. The idea expanded this year at Calvin Klein Underwear, which commissioned Academy Award-winning actress Hilary Swank to star in ads for the Calvin Klein Sensual Shapers line.
The new face for the Calvin Klein Underwear spring 2005 men’s underwear ad campaign is U.K. soccer player Freddie Ljungberg, whose first campaign for fall 2003 was to launch Calvin Klein Pro Stretch underwear. Warnaco is considering casting its Speedo spokesman, Olympic gold medalist Michael Phelps, in ads for its new Fastskin by Speedo men’s underwear line.
Sara Lee Corp. has pushed the celebrity connection further this fall with four high-octane names to sell its lingerie: Jenny Garth, spokeswoman for Hanes Pure Bliss daywear and underwear and co-star of the Warner Bros. TV series “What I Like About You;” Stacy London, Bali bra spokeswoman and TV show host of TLC’s “What Not to Wear;” TV Guide Network’s celebrity style consultant Melissa Rivers, who is also a spokeswoman for Playtex’s TGIF bra brand, and “American Idol” judge Paula Abdul, who did a Barely There Tagfree promotion during fashion week.
London’s newly opened @designmuseum will look back on the life and work of Azzedine Alaïa in a show that the designer helped to curate before he died of heart failure last month. The retrospective, which Alaïa had worked on with Mark Wilson, chief curator of the @groningermuseum, will look at the impact of his work worldwide. The show, “Azzedine Alaïa: The Couturier,” will run from May 10 to October 7. Read more about the exhibit on WWD.com #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: @zefashioninsider)
@Pharrell and his wife Helen Lasichanh were among the stars that came out to celebrate @rimowa’s first pop-up concept shop. The space, which is located on Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills, draws inspiration from airport luggage carousels and lounge areas – and features the company’s luggage and accessories. If the pop-up is successful it could pave the way for addition temporary shops throughout the world. #wwdfashion (📷: Owen Kolasinski/BFA)
@carineroitfeld celebrated @crfashionbook’s first calendar last night with a dinner party at Spring Place in Manhattan. Photographed by @stevenkleinstudio, the calendar takes on a fitness theme and features @joansmalls, @gigihadid, @danielle_herrington_ – pictured here – and more. “[Carine Roitfeld] wanted me to feel sexy and she wanted me to be myself and feel it out on my own and do what I felt was right,” said Herrington, aka Miss October. #wwdeye
@saintrecords and @virgilabloh last night at @americanexpress’ “A Night With Success Makers” event. “I always bring it back to community because without that I wouldn’t have the courage,” said Knowles when asked how she has gotten where she is now. Read more highlights from their conversation on WWD.com. #wwdeye (📷: @lizdoupnik)
This Just In: Industry sources have told WWD that Anastasia Soare is rumored to be considering selling her beauty business, @anastasiabeverlyhills. According to those sources, Soare has tapped investment bank Imperial Capital to explore sale options for her eponymous beauty brand –– and with at least $340 million in net sales, this would be a big deal. Put in context of other recent transactions for makeup companies, Soare’s price tag could be in the billions if she were to sell the whole thing. #wwdnews #wwdbeauty (📷: @clint_spaulding)
@assouline’s latest book, “The Spirit of Bentley: Be Extraordinary” captures the adventurous attitudes and opulent lifestyles of @bentleymotors’ most creative owners and enthusiasts throughout the U.K. The 292-page hardcover has a section dedicated to showing its team of skilled artisans and photos of its most colorful owners, from George Bamford to designer @alicetemperley, pictured here by Aline Coquelle. #wwdeye
@google released its report on the most popular search terms this year. For fashion brands, the list was led by @gucci, the luxury brand that stunned the market last October when it pledged to stop using fur. Runner ups were @supremenewyork and @fashionnova, along with more established brands like @louisvuitton, @chanelofficial and @ysl. #wwdfashion (📷: @aitorrosasphoto)
In yet another fashion show shuffle, @elleryland is moving its show in sync with the Paris couture calendar — though the brand is still keeping one foot on the city’s ready-to-wear schedule. Their runway show in January will coincide with the launch of a new strategy: designing two main collections each year instead of four, which will then be released in four drops. “As we all know, the system needs to change. We need to show sooner to give time back to artisans and designers to do what they do best — create,” said founder Kym Ellery. #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: @kukukuba)
@maxmara’s classic 101801 coat was the cornerstone of its pre-fall 2018 collection. The design team expanded the traditional double-breasted, kimono-sleeved style into a trapeze coat, lean belted styles and a peacoat and presented them in monochromatic looks – like the camel one pictured here. #wwdfashion #prefall18 (📷: George Chinsee)