The Rise of the Celebrity Ambassador

Shane Cullen examines the new wave of celebrity ambassadors in fashion and how they’re changing the game.[br]FASHION houses are always on the search for the next big thing when it comes to keeping on trend, so what new additions are they making now? The most recent move in fashion is celebrity ambassadors and endorsements. Your favourite singers, actors, reality TV stars and YouTubers are all being snapped up by labels to appeal to the ever growing youth demographic, and the success from it has seen bigger brands such as Dior and Dolce & Gabbana giving it a go for themselves. From the classy to the crazy celebrity collaborations, this may just be fashion’s boldest change yet.Catwalks aren’t exclusively for runway models anymore — new age celebrities are making waves in fashion, in turn paving a new route for fashion houses to explore. Back in October this year, Dolce & Gabbana brought a young and fun image to their Spring/Summer 2017 collection which they cleverly marketed as #DGMILLENIALS.
"Catwalks aren’t exclusively for runway models anymore.”
The Italian duo’s “Tropico Italiano” launch included a youthful star-studded line-up including Cindy Crawford’s son Presley Gerber and Stephen Baldwin’s daughter, Hailey. The catwalk presentation was far from subtle, with pieces modelled including a pizza box dress for the ladies and a leopard print suit jacket for the gents.This is far from the only collaboration of famous faces with unapologetic boldness. Jeremy Scott’s Moschino has become almost as well known for its daring range of clashing neon colours and prints as it is for ripping up the rule book of gendered clothing.Last year, Scott teamed up with two of pop’s leading ladies - Katy Perry and Miley Cyrus - for individual projects. The American designer worked alongside Cyrus on outfits for that infamous MTV Video Music Awards show, and in an interview with ELLE magazine, said that close friend Cyrus was “one of the most genuine individuals” that he had ever met.The power and influence of hiring a celebrity ambassador for campaigns is anything but a redundant move. The process of choosing the famous face is a careful decision — the designers know from the outset who they want, and have their ear to the ground when it comes to keeping track of pop culture. This is exactly what Balmain have done, getting Kim Kardashian and her family on board, forming the “Balmain Army.”
“The process of choosing the famous face is a careful decision — the designers know from the outset who they want.”
Collaborations with fashion designers and celebrities have become personal and more creative than ever before; stars are no longer just a clotheshorse on the red carpet. Creative director Olivier Rousteing has seen a sales increase of up to 50% at Balmain between 2013 and 2015 thanks to projects with Kanye West and styling for Rihanna.Getting celebrities on board for designer projects is a fresh and innovative move for their image and fashion. With more emphasis on both designers and celebrities building up a creative relationship, it allows for more avenues for future exploration. Rousteing and Scott have opened new doors for their label by the addition of their famous friends, who look certain to keep fans eager in the long-term.