HAVE YOU GOT ID? Your next Mugler purse won’t just carry your identification — it will have its own.
The brand has teamed up with French blockchain specialist Arianee to roll out digital product passports in the Spiral Curve 01 and Spiral Curve 02 bags, starting with the purses available in stores and on the brand’s e-commerce site from September.
In addition to authentification and traceability, the digital passports will be “digital engagement platforms” that give users access to behind-the-scenes content, event invitation and early access sales, according to Mugler.
Owners can scan a QR code to start the registration process for their bags, and the digital record will provide ownership validation, historical tracking and follow the purse should it go to a new owner.
“We believe digital product passport technology offers endless opportunities to build a more direct, interactive, and truly personalized relationship with our clients,” said Mugler managing director Adrian Corsin.
For Pierre-Nicolas Hurstel, Arianee’s cofounder and chief executive officer, the project was a great way to showcase the possibilities of digital product passports, which he expects to be instrumental to “circularity, compliance and engagement strategies.”
In his opinion, they “can push the boundaries of innovation and build new ways to interact with clients and create business opportunities beyond the constraint of regulation.”
Digital passports carrying product composition, origin and other information such as repair, maintenance and recycling instructions are among the requirements outlined by the European Commission in the EU Strategy for Sustainable and Circular Textiles set out in 2022.
The requirements for the digital product passport are expected to be rolled out from 2026. — LILY TEMPLETON
TRUNK SHOW: Claridge’s is preparing for Christmas on the road with Louis Vuitton this year, tapping the French brand to create the annual tree for the hotel lobby. This year’s theme will be the “art of travel” and Louis Vuitton will unveil its design on Nov. 23.
Claridge’s general manager Paul Jackson said it was an honor to welcome “such a legendary house to design our Christmas tree this year. Christmas is the most magical time of year for us here at the hotel and we look forward to seeing guests and visitors immerse themselves in Louis Vuitton’s world.”
The hotel and the brand have much in common. Both were founded in 1854, and had strong ties to Empress Eugénie, wife of Napoleon III. Monsieur Louis Vuitton was the personal “layetier” to the empress, the man responsible for creating her arsenal of luggage, and packing the bags.
The French royal made Claridge’s her winter residence, and she received so many visits from Queen Victoria that the hotel came to be known as the “annex” to Buckingham Palace.
Vuitton would have packed the empress’s trunks himself for her Claridge’s stays, according to the company.
Louis Vuitton’s first London store opened in 1885 around the corner from Claridge’s, and its signature trunks have crossed the Mayfair hotel’s threshold thousands of times over the past century.
This is the 13th year that Claridge’s has invited a top fashion house or designer to reinterpret the tree in its own distinctive style.
Last year, Jimmy Choo’s creative director Sandra Choi designed the festive tree, which she called The Diamond, a nod to the brand’s twinkling accessories. It was finished with a bow at the top, a motif that ran through the brand’s winter 2022 collection.
In 2021, the hotel invited Dior’s Kim Jones to design the tree, and he paid tribute to craftsmanship and couture. The tree was unveiled shortly before Jones staged his men’s pre-fall fashion show in the British capital.
Named “The Celestial Snow Globe,” the tree featured holographic projections and white toile meant to recall the couturier’s studio.
In the past, Claridge’s has tapped designers including Christian Louboutin, Christopher Bailey, Karl Lagerfeld and Diane von Furstenberg to deck the halls. — SAMANTHA CONTI
MOTORING AHEAD: It’s been a busy year for the Hinduja family, which has been making its mark on London in myriad ways, first with the opening of Raffles London at the OWO, or Old War Office building, and with a new clothing brand called An-Y1.
The family may be the same, but the businesses are different. While Sanjay Hinduja helps to run his family’s eponymous multibillion-dollar conglomerate, his wife Anu Hinduja has returned to her first love, fashion, launching a brand called An-Y1, pronounced “anyone.”
Before launching the new line, Anu Hinduja, a graduate of London’s Inchbald School of Design, had shops in Knightsbridge and Notting Hill that specialized in embroidered Indian designs.
She eventually shut them, but she never gave up on fashion. She has now teamed with her sister, Nandita Mahtani, Bollywood’s go-to designer for resortwear, on the new collection, which Hinduja describes as “contemporary sports luxe.”
The season-less collection debuted with clothing inspired by the colors of the Gulf Oil logo and the gear worn by the British Formula One team, which Gulf sponsors.
The collaboration was all in the family as Sanjay Hinduja is the long-standing chairman of Gulf Oil International, a division of Hinduja Group, which has a vast portfolio that ranges from media, entertainment and communications to specialty chemicals, energy, real estate and health care.
In an interview, Anu Hinduja said that in the coming months she plans to introduce knitwear and denim to the collection, which already features leather and silk.
The debut Monaco Collection includes leather minidresses, silk or canvas jumpsuits, and fabric bombers with logos in a palette inspired by Gulf Oil’s signature colors of duck egg blue, orange and ecru.
The patterns and emblems on the pieces have been drawn from vintage racing jackets, and have an oversized fit.
The collection, which is manufactured in the U.K. and India, will drop in curated edits throughout the year.
Prices range from 300 pounds for a silk top to 850 pounds for a leather jacket. The most expensive piece on offer is the racing leather bomber jacket, which costs 1,050 pounds.
“I love creating, and I had this idea in my head for a while,” said Hinduja. Her aim is to turn An-Y1 into a lifestyle brand with a full rtw collection. She wants to preserve the sporty vintage feel of the debut capsule, and leverage Mahtani’s Indian embroidery expertise.
The sisters will eventually add bags and luggage to the offer, but Hinduja said she does not want to “bombard the market. I want this to grow organically.”
The line is currently selling direct-to-consumer on the website, and Hinduja said the plan is to add wholesale distribution once she and her sister are able to build a bigger profile for An-Y1. — S.C.
NEW GIG: The cowboys on “Yellowstone” have learned it’s not wise to cross Rip Wheeler if they don’t want to risk a beating.
And now, the actor that plays the foreboding ranch foreman on the Paramount Network series has a new gig: the face of two brands in the Authentic Brands Group stable.
Cole Hauser will become the face of both The Frye Company and Lucky Brand as their new ambassador and will be featured in global campaigns for both. He will also participate in collaborations and brand activations for the two companies beginning this holiday season.
“I have always admired the authenticity and quality that Frye and Lucky Brand bring to their products,” Hauser said. “I’m excited to be associated with these two brands whose legacies span decades and continue to represent the true spirit of American craftsmanship.”
Frye, a boot brand, was established in 1863, and Lucky Brand is best known for its denim.
“We are thrilled to welcome Cole Hauser to the Authentic family,” said Stefani Fleurant, senior vice president of marketing — lifestyle at Authentic. “Cole’s authenticity and timeless appeal align perfectly with the values of these brands. We believe that as the new face of Frye and Lucky Brand, Cole will bring a new level of excitement and energy to our consumers and introduce our brands to a broader audience.”
Before “Yellowstone,” Hauser was featured in a number of films, including “Dazed and Confused,” “Good Will Hunting,” “The Break-Up” and “Tigerland,” the latter of which led to a nomination for Best Supporting Male at the Independent Spirit Awards.
Hauser will be featured in Lucky Brand’s holiday campaign followed by Frye’s spring 2024 campaign. — JEAN E. PALMIERI
GROWING BUSINESS: Puig has expanded its headquarters in Barcelona, Spain, and opened a second tower.
“With this new addition, we double the surface of our HQ as a symbol of our global growth and momentum, while we reaffirm our values and sustainability commitments and maintain our roots in the city that saw our birth in 1914,” Marc Puig, chairman and chief executive officer of Puig, said in a statement Monday. “Our operations teams have just started a phased move that will continue until the end of the year to ensure a smooth transition for our employees.”
The building stands next to the Spanish beauty and fashion company’s first tower in the Plaza Europa business area and contains the group’s operations hub with an innovation center. The site, which is to accommodate around 485 employees, will be officially inaugurated in the first quarter of 2024.
The new building, with 20 floors and spanning 226,040 square feet, was designed by GCA Architects. It is designed to look like four stacked cubes with a glazed surface. In the structure are six intelligent elevators and a three-story parking area with chargers for electric vehicles.
“Its flexible interior design also provides a range of space solutions and cutting-edge technologies, giving way to a set of dynamic and collaborative work environments for employees to foster creativity and innovation in the current hybrid model of working,” the company said in the statement.
This building has numerous other sustainable features, such as on-site photovoltaic and solar thermal energy production systems, which can offset by 25 percent the building’s operational carbon footprint.
The waste created by the building’s construction has been sent to authorized waste-management facilities for treatment and recovery. The tower has received a LEED Gold certification, with a 71/100 rating score.
Puig’s first tower opened in 2014 and houses about 500 employees from the company’s corporate office, headquarters and support functions, brands and perfumery center.
Family-owned Puig registered net sales of 3.62 billion euros in 2022. Marc Puig said recently that the company is assessing all strategic alternatives for the company’s future, including possibly opening its capital to third parties through an IPO. — JENNIFER WEIL
NEW PARTNERSHIPS: Haein Dorin has been named to global head of partnerships at Ssense, a new post at the Montreal-based e-commerce multibrand retailer.
Dorin, who will be based in New York, will oversee global brand partnerships and lead global community growth and strategic relations with key parters within the creative, fashion and business communities.
She reports to Christine Sio, vice president of customer experience, and began Monday.
“I’ve been a longtime admirer of Ssense’s buying direction and distinct point of view, and I’m excited to build on that foundation to grow the brand’s community across partnerships, talent and influencers at a global scale,” said Dorin.
Dorin was most recently with Highsnobiety for five years, serving as general manager, and before that, senior vice president, operations. Before that, she was with GQ magazine as director, brand marketing and activations, and earlier worked in direct response and performance marketing at Pandora and corporate partnerships at Condé Nast.
She sits on the board of Comme Si, a luxury sock and loungewear brand.
As reported, Ssense has been celebrating its 20th anniversary, and had a digital anniversary campaign last month featuring a guerilla-style activation at Ssense Montreal, the brand’s five-story, 13,000-square-foot flagship at 418 Rue Saint Sulpice, in Montreal’s Old Port. The entire facade was wrapped in canvas that served as a screen for projected content. The multilevel flagship is Ssense’s only store. — LISA LOCKWOOD