Garfene Grandison, Gleaner Writer
Aligning auto with fashion is not a novel idea. Advertisers have used this gimmick to boost visibility of various luxury brands, for example luxury watches and high-end automobiles.
Recently, Audi teamed with the fashion house Kerrymanwomanhome to present The Collections, a showing of designer label creations.
"The Collections presented by Audi gave us the opportunity to align with fashion - a natural fit when you consider the style and design elements employed in both industries - as part of a real and integrated partnership," said Judith Denton, Audi's marketing and communications manager.
"When style in auto and fashion are laid out in a historical context, you will see that the design elements of both have travelled parallel lines - and both are influenced by modern technology and sensibilities", she added.
According to Denton, fashion adds texture to auto and so they complement each other.
"When Coco Chanel 'invented' the basic black dress, it was referred to as the Model T of fashion. Around this time, auto manufacturers began to recognise women's influence on buying choices. More value was put on details and auto manufacturers realised that their colour palettes could extend beyond black," she said.
She continued, "Auto designers incorporated more fluid, graceful lines in cars and, in fashion, designers opted for a smooth, slender silhouette. The rest is history. The value, preservation and showcasing of classic cars show that cars are perceived as art by many, and that cars are fashionable. We express who we are with our personal sense of good taste reflected in our style. Cars and clothing are two of the most revealing things about a person's lifestyle," she ended.
The Collections is looking at showcasing emerging designers with the intention to foster the growth of Jamaica's fashion industry and to guide designers through the business side of fashion.
Like many other international companies, Audi in Jamaica has tapped into a niche that is being slowly exposed. The Audi Collection is a unique compilation of items that follow the Audi design mandate. Fine material is used to make extraordinary products, including leather handbags and briefcases, luggage, clothing, accessories, watches, miniatures and even a special line for kids.
Likewise, Mercedes-Benz has created a fashion brand all on their own with Mercedes-Benz New York Fashion Week, one of the most sought-after fashion events in the world.
Audi has also created its own market in this area with a few fashion events. The company has sponsored Johannesburg Fashion Week in South Africa, India Fashion Week, Fashion Houston (Texas) and most notably the recently concluded Singapore Fashion Week.