NEW CREATIVE FOR DIESEL: Diesel, notorious for its provocative and irreverent advertising — raunchy seniors, funky nuns, burly sailors in passionate embrace — has a new ad agency, KesselsKramer, based in Amsterdam. The agency will begin a global campaign in fall/winter 2001. Diesel began a review of its account after the departure of creative director Joakim Jonason from the company’s long-time ad agency, Paradiset DDB, which handled the account for 10 years. Those who love the edge needn’t worry: Diesel execs say they’ll continue to push the boundaries of propriety.
MADDEN CRISIS: New York magazine features a story Monday on shoe king Steve Madden, who was indicted for stock fraud and money laundering in both the Eastern and Southern Districts of New York.
Having pleaded not guilty to all charges, Madden tells New York, “The story’s sad. It’s a great story. It’s a real American story. My old friends took me public, they turned out to be crooks and I’m innocent.”
The story gives a detailed account of Madden’s rise; his decision to hire his best friend’s firm to be his banker, and how it all came crashing down. The story was written by Johanna Berkman.
WHYATT JOINS JANE: Antonia Whyatt has been named beauty director of Jane. She succeeds Jane Larkworthy, who became beauty director of W.
Most recently, Whyatt was managing editor of One, a San Francisco-based design magazine. Before that she was senior beauty and fashion news editor at Mirabella.
LIZ GOES CO-ED: Rebecca Romijn-Stamos, the new signature model for Liz Claiborne, is featured in multiple-page ads this spring, shot by Oberto Gili and created by Gotham Inc. In one of the images, she appears with male model Norbert, which is the first time Liz Claiborne has shown a male and female together in its ad campaigns.
“Our research shows men are very much a part of the consumer’s lives,” said Al Shapiro, senior vice president of corporate marketing at Liz Claiborne. (One can only hope they didn’t spend too much money figuring that one out.)
Nevertheless, Shapiro said the company spends a lot of money on research before embarking on an ad campaign. “It’s not just a picture of a pretty girl. Our research shows women know how they want to look and what they want to wear.” Other ads in the campaign feature female model Luhan Fernandez; the Elisabeth large size campaign once again stars Kate Dillon. The ads were shot in Los Angeles and Malibu.
As reported in the company’s 10K, Liz Claiborne’s total annual budget for advertising and promotion throughout all its divisions, is $104 million.
An eight-page insert will break in the March issue of Vogue, and multiple page spreads will appear in such magazines as Elle; O, the Oprah Magazine; Ladies Home Journal; Cosmopolitan and In Style. Ads will also run outdoors in New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago, and Atlanta.
SAKS TRAVELS: For years, Saks Fifth Avenue has been shooting its catalog close to home. But for spring 2001, the retailer decided to go on location, not because because it suddenly got the travel bug, but rather because Conde Nast Traveler secured airfare and luxury accommmodations for the Saks crew in British Virgin Islands and Barbados.
“It was a collaborative effort,” said Sheri Wilson-Gray, chief marketing officer of Saks Fifth Avenue Enterprises. “It’s so telegraphic to show pictures of clothing on the beach. The customer gets the idea right away. It makes people smile, especially in the middle of February.”
The catalog also contains special vacation trip packages — also secured by Conde Nast Traveler — to the destinations featured. Images from the catalog are currently in Saks’ New York windows.
Elsewhere at Saks, the retailer is teaming up with BMG Entertainment to celebrate the 2001 Grammys by honoring three of BMG’s Grammy-nominated artists, Toni Braxton, Gisselle and Patti Smith in its Beverly Hills store. In addition to dedicating a window on Wilshire Boulevard to each, there will be a display inside Saks featuring actual outfits worn by the three from Feb. 15 through Feb. 21, the day the Grammy Awards take place in Los Angeles.
INDEX TURNS FIVE: Index, an independent magazine that covers culture, the art world, music and fashion, has turned five with a special issue that looks back at some of the photos that appeared in the magazine, such as those of Isabella Rossellini and Dennis Hopper by Terry Richardson; Kate Spade by Lucas Michael and Bianca Jagger by Wolfgang Tilmans. The magazine, financed by Peter Halley — who is also a painter — has a circulation of 25,000 and is published five times a year.
“We want to cover people before other people do. Big magazines cover certain people with mass market appeal, we want to tell about people we find really fascinating,” said Halley. The cover features David and Amy Sedaris, with an interview inside with the comic writers/siblings.
The February/March issue, which is up 35 percent in ad revenues, carries such advertisers as Kate Spade, Stussy, Gucci, Barneys New York, A/X Armani Exchange, MaxMara, Miu Miu and The Sak Elliot Lucca. The April/May issue carries an interview with Marc Jacobs at home in Paris, with photos by Juergen Teller.