The Year That Was in Fashion: My Fashion Highlights for 2018

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You might be thinking back on this year and wondering, where did it go? What did I achieve? What were my highlights? When did I start asking all these rhetorical questions like that woman from Sex and the City? 

Here's the fashion news that made the waves in 2018. 

January - Valentino new logo and pop-up shop craze 

Valentino made an a retail play straight out of left field for its resort 2018 collection. A capsule collection was sold in a series of pop-up stores in Tokyo, New York and Hong Kong, whilst they resorted to an 80's aesthetic logo; VLTN.

A slightly nostalgic normcore-noir slotted perfectly into current 2018 trends when streetwear’s hyper-branded and irony-laden aesthetic is pivotal.

February - Lululemon CEO steps down 

Lululemon Athletica CEO Laurent Potdevin is resigned from the retailer citing that the company “fell short of ... standards of conduct” to respect employees and show integrity.

Potdevin was also be removed from his position on the board.

It was a turbulent year for Lululemon with various nefarious remarks from founder Chip Wilson regarding the company’s policy on not manufacturing plus-size clothes. 

That all said the Lululemon store on Oxford Street is awesome. The upstairs menswear division is a little well-kept secret for meetings, coffees and a yoga studio. 

March - Burberry hires Ricardo Tisci 

Riccardo Tisci, left his role as creative director at Givenchy for what many presumed was the top job at Versace, only to be installed at Burberry as chief creative officer.

Riccardo Tisci succeeded Christopher Bailey who’s departure was announced in October 2017. 

Burberry would continue to make the headlines when it was revealed they annually burn millions worth of unsold stock to prevent them landing in the hands of counterfeiters. 

April - Karl Lagerfeld opens in Soho

Karl Lagerfeld opened its first U.S. flagship store in the heart of SoHo at 420 W. Broadway in New York City. 

The flagship will features a combination of both Karl Lagerfeld and Karl Lagerfeld Paris women's and menswear, as well as accessories and footwear galore. 

May - Balenciaga 1200 shirt

This one made Twitter implode. The £1200 tee-shirt/shirt from Balenciaga.

Some Twitterist's went into meltdown  responding with a mix of disparate confusion and some pretty great witticisms. I like the one that comments it looks like it got stuck together in the tumble dryer. 

June - Kate Spade dies 

Yeah sad this one. I know it's not Menswear but Kate was a trailblazer and her suicide effected the fashion community immensely. 

The handbag and fashion designer was found by housekeeping staff inside her Park Avenue apartment, a note was left at the scene.

It's been a big year for mental health, don't struggle alone people. 

July - Dior announce exhibition at V&A

Shit the bed I can't wait for this one. Spanning 1947 to the present day, this exhibition will open on the 2nd February 2019 and trace the history and impact of one of the 20th century’s most influential couturiers, exploring the enduring influence of the fashion house, and Dior’s relationship with Britain.

Book your tickets online. Anyone fancy being my date for this one comment below. 

August - Love Island great for clothing

This is how you sell merchandising  folks. Thanks to the scantily dressed contestants on Love Island such as Georgia, Laura and Megan, searches for thong bikinis, and even thong swimsuits, have increased by 68 per cent in the past two months alone, with an overall 41 per cent increase year on year. 

Year on year the show amps up the ratings and brands get to see a considerable return on their sponsorship. Great TV, great concept, great distraction to a productive day also. 

September - Michael Kors buys Versace

Woah who saw this coming right? Out of nowhere Michael Kors just swallowed up Versace in a ¢2.1 billion dollar and didn't even blink. A couple of Versace purists thought it would cheapen the brand, but so far there's of Versace bags finding its way into TK Maxx. 

The story of Versace on the iPlayer was also some of the best TV I saw this year. 

October - Melanie Trump in Africa

Well it's not a news round up without some kid of mention of the Trumps. Say what you like about the First Lady, but she likes to put on a show right? Not entirely sure if her colonial inspired wardrobe was the right time and place on her tour of Africa. 

November - Dolce & Gabbana

Oh Jesus guys. Why even go there and make a woeful attempt at humour at the expense of a 200 million hammering in the Asian market? 

Overall, Chinese consumers spend over $7 billion each year on luxury goods, according to the consultancy McKinsey. That's nearly one-third of the global market. 

The advert is not racist, just culturally tone death and not at all funny. Such a misstep, will cost them dear. 

December - Ted Baker 

Oh Ray, and his amorous hugs and ear massages. The founder of Ted Baker has now taken a  leave of absence after a petition was rolled out denouncing forced hugs in the Ted Baker workplace. 

Soon only footballers will be allowed to hug in the workplace. 

 

Who is Making the Most Money on Love Island?

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Love it or hate it, you can't escape it. Love Island has built on its phenomenal success of last season and it's not just a ratings success, but a huge commercial success for the broadcasters ITV who managed to rake in over 2.3million viewers on ITV2 on Friday, more than the BBC and the ITV. 

 

Who is making money out of Love Island? 

The winner will get £50k, but it’s said they'll get hundreds of thousands from endorsements, live appearances etc. The show is sponsored by an entire myriad of commercial collaborations.

Love Island viewers can vote via the show's official app, which has previously been used to allow viewers to pick who leaves, who returns and who goes on dates with who.

The app also features a style page with links to buy clothes seen on the islanders and fans can listen to the official Love Island: The Morning After podcast there too.

 

Brand integration

The commercial success of Love Island is not just down to the alchemy of the contestants, their chiseled pecs or porcelain skins, but the integration of the brands used within the show.

One example being the clothes on the show being supplied by the shows partner Missguided. The daters were given daily outfits to last them through their time in the villa as a form of product placement, handing over bits from Missguided casual, summer, festival, and out-out product lines.

It targets that 16-34-year-old audience which until now has been a difficult lock to pick due to the younger generation watching the majority of their TV through other online platforms rather than the live experience. 

 

How much are these brands paying to be on Love Island? 

According to Steven Ballinger, MD for Investment at Ad agency Carat, the biggest sponsor is most likely Superdrug that will be paying in the regions of £4 million to be involved with the shows integration. 

Other brands integrated such as Kellogg’s and Thorpe Park that has a theme park ride dedicated to the show, will likely to be paying in the regions of £1 million for show integration. 

For a spot during the commercial breaks the estimated fees are likely to be between 30-50 thousand pounds. Which is a handsome sum, but compared to the £150k price tags that is demanded for a spot in the X-Factor, still relatively small. 

 

So is brand integration the future for broadcast networks? 

It seems likely. This show has changed the goalposts for product placements. ITV have also adopted the vertical integration by providing its own merchandise from the show. Nothing is more popular than the Love Island personalised water bottles that you might have already started seeing in the drinks holsters of the treadmills in your gym. 

The direct to consumer model eliminates many middle men, circumvents a lot of unnecessary supply chains and keeps the products accessibly priced for the younger markets.