Fashion designers home interiors: extending their brand image and aesthetic through magazine features
thesisposted on 2021-05-24, 09:36 authored by Lauren Petroff
Fashion designers, serving as the face and namesake of their brands, periodically present their homes in magazines. This exploratory study investigates whether this provides a unique opportunity to assist consumers in forming associations with the existing brand. An interdisciplinary literature review provided a thematic foundation, examining: 1) the presentation of self and how this concept can be symbolized through objects in the home; 2) visual culture and visual rhetoric; 3) and the concepts of brand identity, brand image, the “associative network memory model,” and flagship-store image. Content analysis of six in-depth, qualitative interviews was employed to collect relevant and meaningful information. Study informants examined and discussed images of the homes, flagship stores and current runway collections of Ralph Lauren, Tory Burch and Alexander Wang. Findings suggest that viewers are able to attribute associated lifestyles to the home, store or clothing being observed. When the perceived home image was congruent with the viewer-held brand conception, it seemed to reinforce the image. If the perceived home image contrasted with the viewer-held brand conception, it seemed to weaken the image. Two major recommendations were presented: 1) ensure that the home is a clear visual and cognitive representation of the designer’s intended brand identity; 2) establish a clear visual link between homes and brand offerings.