NEW YORK — Cole Haan has named Dree Hemingway the brand’s newest global ambassador. The multiyear partnership will kick off later this year with the fall advertising campaign.
This story first appeared in the March 11, 2014 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
“We spent a considerable amount of time looking at what makes Cole Haan an American icon,” said David Maddocks, chief marketing officer. “Dree, to us, represents that perfect muse for the top end of the Millennial generation. She represents this wonderful optimism and this art of the future.”
Hemingway, fresh off a trip to Paris for the Chloé runway show, described her personal style as rooted in “comfort” — a word very much in sync with the Cole Haan brand. “I don’t think [style] is about a piece of clothing or an accessory wearing you,” Hemingway told WWD. “It’s about you wearing it. I’m very much about less-is-more, and being sexy without trying too hard. I like understated and I like classic.”
As part of her global ambassadorship, Hemingway will cocreate a pinnacle collection of women’s footwear and handbags. “We’re really [pleased] to sit down and roll up our sleeves with her,” said Maddox. “The idea of truly collaborating with her on ideas, and not just having her show up and be a model, is what we’re really looking forward to.”
This prospect of creative collaboration was particularly enticing to Hemingway. “I like being on the other side of things,” she said. “Being able to get involved with a brand that’s so iconic and has such a huge heritage…I like the fact that they are letting me have a little bit of creative control and run with my ideas.”
The premium collection, tentatively titled Cole Haan for Dree Hemingway, has no set date currently, but Hemingway is already brainstorming. “The aesthetic that I’m looking for is something really well made and something that you just want to throw on every day,” she said. “I don’t think that’s not within Cole Haan right now. I don’t want to turn them into something that they’re not. I think that their brand is so true to an iconic and timeless moment — it’s a classic loafer; it’s a classic driving shoe. It’s a staple, but it’s not a scream for attention.”