The importance of a spokesmodel

A half-shaved head, heavy eyeliner, ripped jeans, fishnet tights and a nose piercing. This may be the type of girl you find at a metal concert, but is it the girl you see as the face of Chanel? If the rumor's swirling about Karl Lagerfeld's latest muse are true, it just might be. Thrush Metal drummer and model Alice Dellal is rumored to be the new spokesmodel for Chanel handbags, and after Lagerfeld's Meteirs D'Art collection was shown on models with dreadlocks, it seems Chanel may be switching directions. The idea of a "muse" seems a bit mysterious and can affect everything for a collections color pattern to just how it is presented, but Alice Dellal is a far cry from the fashion house's traditional Parisian aesthetic. So how much does a spokesmodel really affect a brand's image? In most cases, a lot.

Alice Dellal

Miu Miu's fall/winter 2011 campaign this spring featuring 14-year-old actress Hailee Steinfeld, who rose to fame after being nominated for a best supporting actress Oscar when she was only 13, caused quite a stir. In addition to being banned in the UK (the AMA deemed a photo of a 14-year old sitting on a railroad track "irresponsible) many questioned whether a girl who was barely a teenager could feasibly sell designer clothing to women. While the line did feature some younger pieces that many young people snatched up (glittery pumps and glitter and suede booties) the line as a whole is still pushed towards women of a different age. Miu Miu's next campaign featured model more than twice Steinfeld's age, 34-year-old seasoned model Guinevere Van Seenus, who many though reflected Miu Miu's past aesthetic much better than the young actress.

 Hailee Steinfeld for Miu Miu

 Guinevere Van Seenus for Miu Miu

Where else is the importance of model selection more obvious than with the Victoria's Secret models? The girls chosen are instant celebs, and while many models are recognizable, the VS girls are household names. They sell a lifestyle, an attitude, and a fun, flirtatious way of dressing. Every girl has their own personality, and the brand uses it to their advantage. They make it so that every girl wants to be a Victoria's secret girl, from the way they behave to the way they do their hair and makeup.

Victoria's Secret "Angels"

When designing a campaign, designers must choose their models carefully. NL is currently designing a campaign for MANGO nominee Divka, and model selection is a large part of the process. While searching for models, there are many things to consider, since you're essentially deciding the lifestyle and image your brand will portray throughout the season. What is this girl like? Where is she from? Where is she going; to work? To a party? Shopping? On a date? All these questions can be answered by looking at a model. If the model is already established, what kind of image has she portrayed throughout her career? If she is a new model, then where is her career going? Are the ads about how she presents herself, showing a lifestyle, or how she presents the clothes? While NL answers all these questions in the coming week, keep checking back to see who lands Divka's new campaign!