Burberry & Christopher Bailey
This week I had a lottttt of school deadlines. God, it was brutal.
Maybe not as brutal as it could have been though, because at this point I've become very adept at compartmentalizing school work so that it doesn't infringe on my real life. Which this week included (1) trying to find the perfect oxblood-berry shade of lipstick that I'm beginning to think is a mythical object of desire that only exists within the human mind, and (2) joining my boyfriend in madly tracking the shipping status of our iPhone 5eseses.
The lipstick hunt lead me to my local Burberry Beauty counter, and that's where it all started... The story of today's post.
So you know Christopher Bailey, the 41 year old Chief Creative Officer for Burberry? Kinda scruffy hair, boyish charm, and ridiculously amiable? Yeah?
DON'T GET SUCKED INTO THE FAÇADE! He actually intolerable. (Not to mention that he and Burberry already have their iPhone 5eseses -- they tweeted all last week about how their 2014 S/S show was shot exclusively with them. Infuriating.) Look, nothing bonds people like a mutual hate. And I really cherish the bond I have with you, dear reader -- I'm confident you do too. So get ready for some promotional literature on why you should join me in hating Mr. Bailey.
1. The dude was handpicked by Donna Karan while still attending The Royal College of Art. To be more accurate, she stripped naked within minutes of meeting him in order to try on his designs. Then she told him to come work with her after he graduated, which he did. What, no persistent thread of anxiety about the future during one's senior year? No bouncing between jobs after graduating, madly questioning one's chain of life decisions?
2. After Donna Karan, Mr. Bailey worked under Tom Ford for Gucci, as senior designer for womenswear. TOM FORDDD. GUCCCIIII. And Tom Ford really liked him. MUST BE NICE. Wish Tom would vouch for me...
3. Then, at the tender young age of 29, Mr. Bailey joined Burberry. Alright, to be fair, he did have to work his way up the ladder. He came in as Creative Director for Burberry Prorsum in 2001 (crash course: Burberry Prorsum is high-end; London is businesswear; and Brit is casual/accessible.) He became CCO of the house in 2009.
4. Then he completely revitalized the brand no big deal. I don't know if you remember, but Burberry used to be… like, reaaaally cheesy. As in, 90's hip hop star-music video-dancing on a yacht-wearing a Burberry string bikini-kind of cheesy. Think really hard and then it'll all come back to you. It's hard to wrap your mind around it because Mr. Bailey has changed the brand so much -- making it classy, sophisticated, high tech, Apple-y, and overall very Cara Delevigne-y. The word you're looking for is genius. Branding genius. How genius? Quadrupuling their revenues and having a 469 stores in 57 countries genius.
5. Finally, it's Burberry. This one cuts really close to the bone, so bear with me if I get emotional. Every house has their 'thing,' and Burberry's is all about rainy weather, outerwear, and neutrals. And myself? I'm an unfortunate, misunderstood Orange County girl who was born in the wrong West-coast cradle. I BELONG where there's towering architecture, damp streets, grey skies, and neutral colored apparel. Now, I'm not saying I'd turn down working with, say, Gucci (who's 'thing' might be "sexy") or Hermes ("artisan")… but the DNA of Burberry is a very real match to the genetic protein in my cells. Oh, Burberry. Walking into your interiors is like coming home… it's like finally coming home.
(In case you didn't get it yet, I actually adore Bailey and all he's done at Burberry.)
If you're interested in reading more, here are two interviews I strongly recommend:
Lunch with the FT: Christopher Bailey
Christopher Bailey for Burberry Interview at Vogue Festival
These were my favorite interviews on Mr. Bailey and Burberry, but of course there is a wealth of info to be found on Google. Which reminds me, I reeaally love Google, too. Look at all this fascinating information I have at my fingertips -- all the learning almost makes you forget that you're actually procrastinating ;)
Anyways, talk to you later. I've got a couple more deadlines, and as the venerable Ms. Britney Spears once said, "Better work, betch."
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