Alexander McQueen jacket, $11,675 Fall 2010 Collection
Cindy Rachofsky - Allison V. Smith for
The Wall Street Journal
Celebrities and socialites are often given pieces by designers in exchange for publicity. They're walking advertisements, and their followings take notice of what designers and trends their idols are wearing. But they're not the clients designers should be thinking about when they create a collection. It's the people that pay full price for an item that become the most loyal and valuable customers.
Peter Pilotto dress - Resort Spring 2012
Model Miranda Kerr in Peter Pilotto
These clients are extremely valuable to department stores, and they create relationships with personal shoppers that help them build their wardrobe. The shoppers get to know their clients well enough to suggest pieces that meld into both their clients personal collection and the trends of the season, assuring their client is always both comfortable in their appearance and fashion forward.
Young&ng cuff - Fall 2011
Many of these clients will become loyal to a certain brand, and it's beneficial to designers to know their clients who favorite them. Loyal customers are the ones spreading the designers name by word of mouth, and care more about the chicness of a design then how edgy something appears in a magazine editorial. They're making runway pieces work everyday, and wearing $20 thousand gowns nightly to charity events and galas. Celebrities are unattainable figures, and while they can make a trend or designer popular, it's usually not going to inspire waves of teenagers to go out and buy a $3,000 piece of jewelry. They're more likely to purchase a knockoff at Forever21 or H&M. Some designers and retailers treat their loyal customers like celebs, sending items to their home on good faith, eliminating the need for them to shop all together.
While it's important to use media darlings to create a name for a designer, it's just as important to remember those they're advertising to. They may or may not be a size 2, but what is for certain is that they're buying and wearing what a designer is selling, completing to cycle from creation to consumer.