HIGH-FASHION FOOTBALL: The Birkin bag on the set of Friday’s photo shoot for NFL women’s apparel was the giveaway that the league is trying to up its fashion quota. Suzanne Johnson, whose husband, Woody, owns the New York Jets, brought an assortment of her Hermès accessories to wear in the ad she will appear in with her friend and fellow fan Melania Trump. Wearing white AG jeans, a fitted Jets top and Jimmy Choo Barbie shoes, Johnson said, “I am an Hermès girl [gesturing toward her watch and bracelets] so my bag will be in the shot. This is what I would actually wear to the stadium.”

And that’s the point of the upcoming “It’s My Team” campaign, which was shot by Daniel Jackson at Pier 59 Studios and will break in August fashion and lifestyle magazines. Stylist Tiina Laakkonen mixed designer labels with an assortment of logo apparel and accessories from the NFL’s 32 teams. (Where else would one find black suede over-the-knee boots with the Buffalo Bills logos?)

This story first appeared in the June 11, 2012 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

Johnson asked another fan, Harvey Weinstein, to recruit his Marchesa-designing wife Georgina Chapman to whip up a limited-edition shirt for the league. That will make its debut during the NFL’s two weeks of kickoff festivities in New York planned around the Sept. 5 New York Giants-Dallas Cowboys opener.

The print ads will feature an assortment of women including Peta Murgatroyd and Kym Johnson of “Dancing With the Stars,” DJ Kiss, former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Olympic swimmer Summer Sanders. Kiss went all-out with a New Orleans Saints-inspired manicure. Having recently DJ’d the after parties for the MTV Music Awards, as well as one at Giorgio Armani’s club in Milan, the Baton Rouge, La., native said she stays true to her roots. “My friends said, ‘You just like the Saints because they won.’ I told them, “Nooooo. I have watched many games where they lost.’”

Trump, who often catches the Jets home games with her husband, Donald, and the Johnsons, wore leather pants, a body-hugging, plunging Jets top, Christian Louboutin stilettos and bracelets from her Melania
line for QVC. She’s close to lining up an unrelated fashion deal.

The NFL’s director of apparel, Rhiannon Madden, said of the campaign: “We want to show that you can be a fan by what you wear to work, going to the gym or out at night with girlfriends. It’s also a message of empowerment. It’s your team — not your guy’s team.”

As for whether Suzanne Johnson consulted with her Jets-owning husband about Friday’s shoot, she said, “He leaves the fashion to me and I definitely leave the football to him.”

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