May
 28
 2019



Christopher

Hello,

Now that the long holiday weekend has ended here in the US, it's time for a new edition of The Spin. The new owner of The Kooples has already made a major change to management and Diane von Furstenberg is getting ready to say goodbye as head of the CFDA. UK retail sales are better than a year ago and movie stars and fashion influencers both made splashes on the Cannes red carpet. And in Brazil, some prisoners are improving their lives and selves by creating fashion. Enjoy the read. Best, Christopher



people

Guinier's new gig. Maus Frères, which officially acquired the French brand The Kooples last week, has named Romain Guinier as the label's new CEO. He previously served as the longtime CEO of Aigle, another Maus Frères-owned brand along with Lacoste and Gant. Lacoste's head of brand and marketing, Sandrine Conseiller, will take over as the head of Aigle.



End of an era. Diane von Furstenberg is having a memorable month. Next Monday, June 3, she will officially turn over the reins as the chairman of the CFDA to Tom Ford after 13 years as its head and earlier this month she helped open the new Statue of Liberty Museum, who fundraising campaign she also now leads. In addition, she just celebrated the opening of the final section of the High Line elevated park in NYC, another pet project of hers. She reflects on her accomplishments in a brand new interview with Vogue.





markets

Better than expected. Monthly retail sales numbers in the UK were released on Friday and while flat for the month of April, the 0% number was better than the drop the most analysts predicted. And compared to April 2018, they rose 5.2%. Clothing sales also climbed probably due to the warm weather and online purchases were up too. However, spending continued to fall at department stores and at High Street shops.



Asian influence. While they continue to be increasingly important pretty much worldwide, influencers aka key opinion leaders (KOLs), are especially powerful in China. The reasons for this include the fact that China is the youngest and most digitally-driven market for luxury brands, that Chinese consumers are more likely to use social media to decide what to buy and that they trust actual people more than the brands themselves. The country now has more than 20,000 KOLs who have more than 1 million followers on Weibo and some of them even managed to attend this year's Cannes Film Festival.





brands

Fashion and film. Speaking of Cannes, the annual festival ended its latest edition over the weekend and as usual, numerous brands including Ralph and Russo, Roberto Cavalli and Dior got great publicity for dressing stars on the red carpet this year. The new Giambattista Valli and H&M collaboration debuted at the event, which also attracted a few brand-sponsored influencers from India as well as the Chinese contingent.



Girl power. Players from the US Women's National Soccer team, some of whom are currently suing the US Soccer Federation for gender discrimination, are launching their own lifestyle brand. Called Re-Inc in honor of redefinition or reinvention, the company will start with T-shirts and clothing but plans to eventually offer beauty, wellness and tech products as well. The brand will start selling online one week from today.





tech

A better battery. An R&D team at Hong Kong Polytechnic University's Institute of Textiles and Clothing has created a new lightweight textile lithium battery that is flexible and has a long life cycle. The new invention, which has already won several awards, promises to be a game changer in fashion, sports and wearable devices as it can withstand both bending and twisting.





last

Convicts' catwalk. Professional Brazilian models recently walked in a highly unusual fashion show outside Sao Paulo. The event took place inside a working men's prison and the clothing was designed and crocheted by the inmates, who also served as the show's proud audience. The designs are made as a result of the Fixed Point rehabilitation program that designer Gustavo Silvestre launched at the jail three years ago. For every 12 hours completed in the program, a participant gets his sentence reduced by one day.







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