Move over, Daria — Alexa is back.
Having proven her popularity with AG’s customers last year when she launched a two-season design collaboration with the premium denim brand and appeared in marketing campaigns to promote it, Alexa Chung is replacing model Daria Werbowy in AG’s ads this fall.
The South Gate, Calif.-based brand has signed the perennial “It” girl for a one-year contract to cover two seasons, ending Werbowy’s four-season reign as the face of AG. With previous experience fronting ads for labels such as Isabel Marant, Diane von Furstenberg and Salvatore Ferragamo, Werbowy helped propel AG into the big leagues of fashion marketing. Founded in 2000, AG has secured a strong position in the denim industry but is still trying to make a mark in the contemporary fashion market with its sportswear designs.
Werbowy also helped AG stretch its creative parameters. Tapping into the fluidity between genders in fashion in an era of unisex dressing, Werbowy sported men’s clothing for ads that ran in GQ and Esquire this spring.
“Part of [Werbowy’s] brand is that while she can look beautiful and be glammed up in the DVF campaign, she can achieve androgyny with a cool look,” said Johnathan Crocker, AG’s director of global communications, who oversees marketing, advertising, branded partnerships and collaborations.
Still, he acknowledged, “Working with the likes of a Daria comes with great expense. We thought of other possibilities.”
Chung proved her appeal when she collaborated with AG to design and promote an array of overalls, denim dresses, silk blouses and embroidered suede coats inspired by the Sixties and Seventies. AG and Chung convinced another “It” girl, Gia Coppola, to make a short film of Chung singing while wearing a dark indigo minidress from her collection. Mytheresa.com sold out of the frock on its Web site in 16 minutes.
“There is something about Alexa where women want to be her,” Crocker said. “She walks this line of being very aspirational and very accessible. That is what we gravitate toward.”
Crocker didn’t reveal the creative vision for Chung’s ads. He explained that AG typically photographs its fall campaigns in late April. The images will break in the August issues of print magazines. He also declined to reveal the budget, although he acknowledged that AG has consistently increased its spending on advertising every year over the past half decade.
AG has locked Chung into an exclusive for all denim campaigns and marketing projects in which denim would be a main offering. For the past two years, the 32-year-old Brit has appeared in jetsetter-themed ads for French accessories company Longchamp.
For her part, Chung said in her usual offbeat manner, “I guess they missed me as much as I missed them.”