Taking a brand that’s fallen out of favor and making it cool again is among the hardest things to do in fashion, but if I’d trust anyone to pull it off, it’d be former Balenciaga frontman Nicolas Ghesquiere. Louis Vuitton apparently agreed with me when they hired Ghesquiere to fill the position vacated by Marc Jacobs after 16 years, and since his arrival in 2013, he’s quickly put his own stamp on the iconic line’s handbags.
Ghesquiere’s designs have been extremely popular among fashion people, and they’re arguably the root of the A-line miniskirt trend that’s at the forefront of the 70s revival currently happening in fashion. Louis Vuitton has also effectively recruited an army of fashionable celebrity supporters, most of whom are extremely talented in their own fields, beyond simply being good vessels for clothes and accessories. It may seem like a small distinction when aesthetics are the primary concern, but when it comes to marketing a brand as a lifestyle component, it’s extremely important.
Convincing fashion people and celebrities to get on board is crucial, but Louis Vuitton is a handbag brand before it’s anything else, and that means the brand’s most important critics are accessories consumers. The brand’s fashion and leather goods sales increased 18% in the first half of 2015, according to QZ, so it would appear that many consumers approve of the slew of new designs launched under Ghesquiere’s oversight, including the Twist Bag and the Petite Malle Clutch.
Many of you had critical things to say about Ghesquiere’s biggest bag launch yet, the City Steamer, but Vuitton is a brand that inspires such ardent love and hate alike that it’s difficult to use that as a bellwether for how the bag will actually do on the market. It strikes me as a strong addition to the LV lineup, but we’ll have to have to wait and see if it catches on. In my mind, though, Ghesquiere’s tenure at Vuitton is going about as well as the company’s executives could have hoped.
What about you, though? Is your interest in LV bags increasing, decreasing or staying the same as these new designs debut?