The Musings Of An Opinionated Sod [Help Me Grow!]

Unperfectly Perfect …

So last week, the disgustingly talented Nils Leonard posted this on his instagram.

I have to say, I love it.

Sure, it’s for Mothers Day that affords more creative licence in terms of how a brand expresses themselves, but given Chanel has only celebrated elegance and perfection for years, it’s a huge leap.

Apparently it was drawn by a Chanel employees daughter on a ‘bring your kids to work’ day.

I can’t imagine how much money this saved them in terms of ad agency costs.

Though of course, this is less about being cheapskates and more the changing face of luxury.

For too long the category has been a closed shop.

It dictated terms, rejected new entrants and ruled by an iron fist.

Cold. Clinical. Aloof. Exclusive.

But the shift has been happening.

The rules of luxury are changing.

And while the establishment may look down at brands like Supreme as nothing more than expensive hype, the reality is the new generation of luxury buyers feel differently.

They don’t want to be part of the old rules, they want luxury to reflect them and how they live.

Personal. Emotional. Ridiculous and audacious. Human. Fun. A new definition of perfection.

And with brands like Mr Ji and Gucci both embracing this change and driving it … it will be interesting to see how many other luxury brands start stretching the boundaries of who they are and who they associate with moving forward.

Though I accept there’s a good chance they’ll just do what they’ve always done – especially with designers – and just try and buy the brands/people who are making waves.

Then assimilate them into their system.

Wow, look at me talking about fashion. And luxury. Who Am I?

28 Comments so far
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Yes. For all the reasons you’ve said Robert. Which surprises me as much as it must be surprising you.

Comment by George

That said, I don’t think this ad represents Chanel trying to appeal to followers of the new rules of luxury. I don’t think you are saying that, but just to be sure.

Comment by George

I think his point is new rules are pushing luxury brands to let go of old expressions of the category to varying degrees.

Comment by Bazza

So this Chanel ad has been influenced by it, but the product hasn’t.

Comment by Bazza

No, I’m saying what Baz said …

The new rules of luxury is as much about how brands communicate as it is who they are communicating too.

Without doubt Chanel – especially Number 5 – is targeting the same audience as they’ve always spoken to, but the way they are doing this is shifting, as this ad shows. The amazing thing is I think it still feels Chanel, and not just because of the bottle, which is testimony to how the brand has established itself in our psyche.

Including mine apparently. Which is genuinely amazing.

Comment by Rob

It’s a better drawing than you could pull off.

Comment by Bazza

If the luxury establishment were worried about how Supreme and Gucci’s new creative direction would affect them. Having you talk about the category must petrify them.

Comment by Bazza

Not as much as it scares me.

Comment by Rob


Comment by Jemma King

I agree Jemma, I adore this too. Charming but elegant.

Comment by Mary Bryant


Oh hang on, is that Dior?

Comment by Rob

Yes Rob. It’s Dior.

Have you seen this clip where Charlize Theron talks about how her ad celebrates why it is such a great time to be a woman? I like her as a person, but I think she may be wrong on this. Or she thinks every women looks like her and has her career and money.

Comment by Pete

It does feel a little weird, I must admit.

Comment by Rob

dior only made her say that shit to let the male execs get off on how good she looks without looking like perv fucks. now thats strategy campbell.

Comment by andy@cynic


Comment by DH

I like the ad, but I do wonder if I would still like it if the name on the bottle was Julie?

Comment by Pete

It’s an ad for Mother’s Day, not for luxury. Whereas the Dior ad is diversity-washing. The former captures the reality of the day while the latter is just a press release that bears little relation to reality.

Comment by John

A luxury brand communicating for Mother’s Day doesn’t stop it being a luxury brand communicating. And for some, getting Chanel on a Sunday, even one supposedly to honour them, is still luxurious.

Comment by Rob

Sure, but let’s see if they repeat the style in other ads.

Comment by John

Ahhhhh, I see what you mean.

OK, then yes – I agree. Though they are already evolving their retail approach, the one they’ve done for my client in Beijing is mental. But then, it does have to fit in with a place that has been designed to resemble Mars!

Comment by Rob

Yes, I watched the video of that. Quite astonishing. Not least because it doesn’t seem to align with the analysis of eminent consultants.

Comment by John

so youre saying a big fucking block of beige is luxury.

thats all anyone needed to know about your cred in the subject.

Comment by andy@cynic

“big fucking block of beige.”


Comment by DH

Reminds me of this masterpiece:

Comment by Rob

The internet was more fun back then.

Comment by DH

I remember that site. It is so wonderfully mean. I think the first time I saw it, I thought Andrew was behind it. Then I remembered he could not send an email without Katerina’s help.

Comment by George

K was blackberry before blackberry.

Comment by Bazza

[…] written a bunch about this in the past [here, here and here for example] but nothing reinforces my view than the new fragrance bottle from […]

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