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Celebrities as creative directorsIs it effective to hire them?

by HQ

Celebrities becoming Creative Directors seems like it’s becoming the future, but is it a good thing or not?

As the forever-changing world of fashion keeps evolving, so has the title of Creative Director. But an odd spin has been taking form in recent years and its celebrities taking up the mantle. With the likes of Pharrell taking up the role of one of the biggest fashion brands of all time, Kendall Jenner as the Creative Director of the luxury e-commerce site FRWD, Beyonce co-designing the Renaissance Couture for Balmain, and Future being the Creative Director for Lanvin Lab. This has raised some eyebrows for fashion lovers, making them question if it’s for the betterment of fashion. Are celebrities capable of taking up the role of prestigious fashion brands? And what does that say about the future of the fashion industry?

Before diving in, there should be an understanding of what a Creative Director does for a fashion brand. Having an esteemed fashion degree or an esteemed experience in designing isn’t fully necessary, but what’s most essential is not only having a bold vision but utilizing it in a way where it can complement and embellish the fashion house’s values and vision. From there, the Creative Director is given a team of designers under their direction. It doesn’t just end with designing, the Creative Director is in charge of social media, campaigns, and marketing strategy for the upcoming collection. And it’s also important to have a balance between honouring the brand’s heritage and offering new ideas and innovations at the same time.

Going off from that, there are some pros and cons in hiring a celebrity as a creative director.

PROS

  • VISION: Celebrities, especially musicians and actors have spent years making their
    vision come to life, from the concept of an album, songwriting, and making music
    videos, to diving deep into a character’s role and improvising such iconic lines and
    scenes in a film. A creative director’s main goal is to find a vision that embellishes
    the image of a brand and brings it to life.

AUDIENCE: Throughout the years, celebrities learn what the audience wants,
whether it’ll be choosing to be in a film that’ll be a fun blockbuster summer hit, or
making songs that are catchy to dominate the charts. They can use that experience
in fashion when coming up with a Ready-To-Wear collection or eye-catching pieces
for the runway.

MARKETING: While quality is important for the brand, so is the exposure the brand
can get from the celebrity as its Creative Director. The celebrity’s name alone can
bring a new and larger audience to the brand, increasing its clientele, fanbase, and
customers. This will increase the company’s revenue, which in turn will increase the
amount of funds the company can provide for the creative process of the brand.

CONS

DECISIONS: Being at the head, celebrities may not execute well on establishing a
strong vital vision for the brand. Celebrities do have experience with creating a
vision, but that comes with the help of others in their team, E.I- Producers,
songwriters for music, and a plethora of expert individuals from other fields.
As a Creative Director, you’ll be the one to make the final and hardest decisions,
which isn’t the same as having a team guiding you when making music or a director
and writers guiding an actor for a film.

QUALITY: When a celebrity with little experience in fashion takes up the role of a
Creative Director, especially for a big brand, the quality, and expertise won’t be as
good as a Creative Director with experience in the fashion industry. Back in the day,
a Creative Director would have experience working stressful and countless hours in
fashion, working their way up the ladder in fashion to garner the respect and
attention of major brands. Experience like that is irreplaceable, meanwhile,
celebrities get the position handed to them with no little to know clue on what it
takes to make a collection.

DRIVE: Besides having a vision, a Creative Director needs drive. It’s not only a
completely stressful job but a pressuring one as well, as a Creative Director can face
a lot of criticism for their work. When hiring a designer for this role, it’s already
established that they have a passion and drive for this work as they’ve worked hard
to climb the ladder and gain the attention of the fashion house. But for a celebrity,
they’ve already got the fame and money, and not much motivation for them to take
up this role. This role can be seen as something fun for them, while a role like that
for a designer is their biggest dream and they’ll view it as a serious responsibility
not only for their legacy but for the legacy of the brand’s heritage.

Writer
Lauren Pierre-Louis
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