Kate Spade Aces the Holiday Campaign

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Kate Spade has created another winning advertising campaign with their holiday series, starring Karlie Kloss and Derek Blasberg. A handful of others feature in the seriees, ranging from the cool, young family who own the online store Aloha Picnic, to singer Alice Smith and her very cute toddler, to serious and black-clad literary agent Anne Borchardt.

The campaign of is made up of two photo series: a whimsical up-close portrait session with shades of Wes Anderson, and a fun, spontaneous-looking session in the back of a limo, featuring Kloss in each frame.

The ads are pitch-perfectly on brand, do a lot of work while seeming effortless. Firstly, the campaign subtly challenges the idea that Kate Spade is exclusively for young white women, by including both men and women, people of color, and includes a diverse range of ages, a brand goal that was laid out in the Miss Adventure series. Secondly, the sophisticated photography quality executed by Emma Summerton makes Kate Spade look cool, less fussy, try-hard, and girly, while still maintaining its signature sense of fun.

Kloss and Blasberg are the real stars of the campaign, though, and what a brilliant pick– the two are best friends in real life, and their chemistry and giggly rapport is evident. Using Blasberg, in particular, was an inspired move, and I can’t fathom why he hasn’t been used in advertising before now. At 33, Blasberg has written and edited for nearly every major fashion publication in existence, consulted for labels from H&M to Chanel, published two books and is currently doing a stint at Gagosian Galley. Handsome, witty, and seemingly close friends with everyone who’s anyone, Blasberg is something like the Andy Warhol or Oscar Wilde of today’s fashion set. He’s a stellar choice for the ads because the audience wants to be friends with him, have a career like his, and can’t help but having a bit of a crush on him.

I love the idea of men fronting womenswear campaigns if the brands are in perfect alignment, like Blasberg’s is with Kate Spade’s. Brad Pitt for Chanel No. 5 was a miss, but the highest profile man-for-womenswear ad to date. Men can be an even more powerful visual rhetoric for a womenswear brand than women can – the kind of man you want to be with can intensely reinforce the kind of brand you want to wear. Eddie Redmayne for Burberry will appeal to some women (me) much more than a random oiled-up Versace guy, and vice versa. I hope to see more of this. Tom Hiddleston for Belstaff! Harry Styles for Gucci! Bill Murray for Kate Spade! The possibilities are endless.

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