Updated: May 19
What’s Brand Got to Do with It?
Credit: Jonathan Evans
Of late the second collaboration between North Face and Gucci has raised many questions around brand partnerships and whether their intentions deserve the prices they demand.
Their united collection combines ready-to-wear outdoor garments which celebrate the shared values between the brands of self-discovery and exploration. The key difference is that combined branded garments cost far more than the average North Face garments which appear to be constructed in the exact same way.
Gucci renowned for its luxury tailored couture garments, is one of the most influential global fashion houses of all time. They are renowned for their incredible patterns, prints, construction, and couture design. North Face on the other hand is known for their technical mountain apparel, expedition standard equipment and premium active wear. The brands are polar opposites on who they cater for and what they stand for, however, this is the very reason why such a collaboration works.
Gucci acknowledges that The North Face, an outdoor technical clothing line constructed for the elements, is a luxury. And when combining technical quality with design quality the brand story can be far more sell-able than one in isolation of the other. North Face on the other hand understands that in order to relate to a far greater audience; entertaining luxury among the outdoor elements may bring another dimension to their collections and to their brand.
This strategy is not the first of its kind. In 2005, Stella McCarthy and Adidas collaborated, with the first functional sports performance range for women designed by a luxury fashion designer. The collection offered a unique combination of supreme technical performance with a standout style. Its brand partnership was so successful that they continued to develop further collections for many years after this.
Many may not agree with the collection or the prices that go with the collection, yet when you combine a brand this is recognised worldwide as one of the most luxurious brands in history with a brand which is all about technical outdoor detailing, it creates the ultimate brand flex. In this case the most luxurious outdoor collection in the market.
And for this many may argue the prices are worth it!