NEW YORK — Continuing its effort to show off famous faces wearing the season’s hottest looks, New York & Co. has named model Iman as its spring 2006 face.
The women’s specialty retailer with more than 500 stores nationwide chose “Desperate Housewives” star Eva Longoria for its holiday campaign. After the success of that campaign, the company selected Iman to represent the spring collection. The print ads will hit the March issues of Marie Claire, Cosmopolitan, Glamour, Oprah, People, Redbook, Self and Shop Etc.
“It’s really funny what happens when a customer relates to Eva when they see her face in the stores,” said Robert Luzzi, vice president of creative and marketing for New York & Co. “We had women come in, see the photographs and literally purchase exactly what she is wearing, right down to the accessories. They see the complete package right in front of them, they like what they see, and it’s easy for them to buy the look as they see it.”
Luzzi said he decided to hire Iman after seeing her at an industry event. He knew that while Iman was a beautiful woman, she was also a bit older than New York & Co.’s target customer, which now ranges from 25 to 45. Iman is 50 years old.
“I came back to the office and asked all the young girls here what they thought of Iman,” Luzzi explained. “And I got responses like ‘she’s a beauty icon’ and ‘she’s ageless.’ That’s when I realized that age isn’t really an issue, it’s not about age, it’s about aspiration.”
Photographed by Patrick Demarchelier, who also shot Longoria for the $1 billion retailer, Iman’s makeup was done by Sam Fine, hair by Oscar James and styling by Freddie Leiba. The company declined to reveal the ad budget. Luzzi said he hopes the Iman ads, which feature her in a white pinstriped pantsuit, will generate the same buzz as Longoria’s did. He is already searching for the next famous face for the fall ads.
“It’s all about finding the right person at the right time,” he said. “I’m not going to have a celebrity for the sake of having a celebrity in the ads. It has to be right.”