What to Watch: Royal, Political Influencers Spark Criticism, Affect Fashion With Photo-ops

Like them, love them or despise them, political and royal influencers churn up the Internet nearly instantaneously with every public outing.
Whether stepping out for a diplomatic gala dinner, a schoolyard visit with wide-eyed students or for a hardhat-worthy ribbon cutting ceremony, the powers-that-be dress accordingly, knowing their choices will send sales skyrocketing. Their personal fashion loyalties vary — Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel favors pantsuits, beleaguered British Prime Minister Theresa May prefers skirt suits, France’s First Lady Brigitte Macron is all about Louis Vuitton and U.S. First Lady Melania Trump is nonpartisan in terms of designers.
As a sign of their global reach, the newly minted Duchess of Sussex, Meghan Markle, topped Google’s 10 most-searched people list last year. For her first official tour, with Prince Harry last fall, to Australia, the American-born royal packed plenty of options for the 16-day trip. Occasionally changing twice in one day, the former “Suits” actress wore an assortment of Australian labels, as well as Brandon Maxwell, Jason Wu, Roksanda Ilincic, Stuart Weitzman, Manolo Blahnik, Gucci and Birks.
Before last spring’s royal wedding, it was estimated that the net present value to brands that Markle wears was 150 million pounds, or $ 212.1 million, according to David Haigh,

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Ralph Lauren Taps Emmy Rossum, Cameron Dallas, Influencers for Holiday

Ralph Lauren teamed up with a host of influencers for its latest holiday shopping campaign, tapping Emmy Rossum, Cameron Dallas, Iman, Taylor Hill, Olivia Palermo, Johannes Huebl the Shibutani siblings Alex and Maia to curated their own holiday shopping lists. The campaign then kicked off at the brand’s Beverly Hills flagship with a party Thursday night hosted by Rachel Zoe and Nate Berkus. Other guests included Kelly Sawyer, Elizabeth Chambers, Caroline Vreeland, Candice Nelson and David Lauren.
“They asked me to host along with Nate and to work on a gift guide for them, which of course was not hard at all since we are such a Ralph family and always have been,” said Zoe of the campaign, which she shot in Central Park. “It’s fun to help people navigate shopping. Men are the most challenging to buy for because they are so particular about what they want or don’t want but a guy is always happy to see a Ralph Lauren shopping bag. You can’t go wrong with a big Navajo cardigan or a shearling bomber. Or a holiday scented candle.”
Said Berkus, “I always appreciate giving and receiving things of quality that won’t go out of style,

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Italy’s Antitrust Targets Alberta Ferretti, Alitalia and Influencers

FLYING PROBE: Italy’s antitrust watchdog has begun a probe to determine whether Alitalia and luxury goods group Aeffe have possibly engaged in surreptitious advertising through social media.
The antitrust authority has launched a preliminary investigation of Italy’s largest airline company and of Aeffe, in a link to its co-owner Alberta Ferretti. It is also investigating a number of influencers, including Chiara Ferragni, who posted on Instagram images of themselves wearing Alberta Ferretti designs embellished with the Alitalia logo.
On Tuesday, Aeffe executive chairman Massimo Ferretti, brother of the designer, had no comment on the issue.
In June, Ferretti unveiled the new uniforms she designed for employees of Alitalia, as well as a see-now-buy-now capsule collection. The latter was presented at the brand’s resort 2019 and “Limited Edition” midi couture fall collection runway show that month.
The new uniforms replaced this summer those designed by Italian haute couturier Ettore Bilotta, which Alitalia introduced in 2016.
The capsule was immediately available at the brand’s stores and e-commerce, as well as at selected retailers including LuisaViaRoma, Rinascente, Farfetch, Barneys and Forward by Elyse Walker, and consisted of a sweatshirt, a T-shirt and a sweater embellished with the Alitalia logo.

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The Outside View: How Tech Has Robbed Photographers of Power and Given it to Influencers

My daughter recently turned 12 and as part of the celebrations we watched R.J. Cutler’s 2009 documentary, “The September Issue.” Not exactly a typical choice for a coming-of-age film but still one that threw past and present into stark contrast.
As the documentary unfolded, it dawned on me just how much publishing and technology have moved on in the last nine years. None of the staff at Vogue was seen using smartphones. I tried to imagine watching it through my daughter’s eyes.
In one scene, Anna Wintour is waiting to view potential cover shots of Sienna Miller by Mario Testino. The team must wait to download large files, then print off the images from the shoot. Although the technology was already there, it was clunky and slow in comparison to today. We were looking at what is fast becoming history: Analogue fashion photography.
In less than a decade, the arrival of the smartphone and its high-tech capabilities has completely revolutionized photography and publishing. Nine years ago, Vogue was a fashion authority. Today, Instagram is. The hashtag Fashion Week has 15 million posts attached to it, #AW18 has 533,000 and counting.
We’re also sharing more photos than ever, 350 million per day on Facebook alone. Where

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Creative Playground Launches to Help Companies With Branding, Production, Celebrity Influencers

NEW YORK — Dari Marder, Nicole Winnaman and Maria Dolgetta have joined forces to create a new branding and marketing agency, Creative Playground, aimed at fashion, entertainment, beauty and wellness industries.
Their alliance has been a long time in the making — though one that came together without any trace of a headhunter. On the October day in 2015 that Marder exited the Iconix Brand Group as global chief marketing officer, Winnaman, a public relations and communications specialist, was the first to contact her. “Nicole said, ‘This is the day I’ve been waiting for for years,’” Marder said with a laugh Tuesday.
The pair first met in 2008, when Winnaman pitched Britney Spears to Marder for a Candie’s campaign. After working together for two years, they stayed in touch and always tried to work together. “Maria and I always felt that Nicole was the closest to being just like us. She was a businesswoman, but a creative and a mom, who somehow found this great balance to raise these beautiful girls. She was just juggling it just like we were,” Marder said.
In their 20-plus years working together at Iconix, Marder and Dolgetta handled a portfolio with 30 brands which included Badgley Mischka,

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Linda Farrow Taps Four Digital Influencers for Spring Capsule

DIGITAL VISION: Linda Farrow is sidelining designers in favor of digital influencers for its spring capsule collection.
The luxury eyewear brand, which is known for its seasonal collaborations, has so far been teaming with a host of designers to create capsules. They have ranged from established names such as Matthew Williamson and Dries Van Noten to younger, eccentric labels including KTZ, Yazbukey and Bahrain-based Khaleda Rajab.
For the latest capsule, the brand has instead tapped four influencers: Australian native Nicole Warne, known for her blog Garypeppergirl.com; Leaf Greener, a Chinese stylist and publisher of her own WeChat fashion magazine; Elena Perminova, a Russian model and founder of Instagram charity “SOS by Lena Perminova,” and the Netherlands-based Negin Mirsalehi, who is a vlogger and founder of a hair-care line.
The four women, who boast a combined following of up to 7 million, have designed one pair of sunglasses each and are featured together in a new campaign promoting the collection, shot by Mariano Vivanco.
Simon Jablon, the brand’s chief executive officer, said the decision to work with the influencers was based on the idea of “global togetherness,” and on teaming people with whom the Linda Farrow customer can relate to.

A visual from the Linda Farrow spring

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