Our agency has worked in various ways in Hollywood for our clients – from leveraging film partnerships to promoting sponsorships. We did a diamond suite for 5 years at The Four Seasons hotel in Beverly Hill the week leading up to The Academy Awards. It was both a total blast and a totally freaky experience, clients paying hundreds of thousands of dollars hoping to get some red carpet action and NO GUARANTEES. I spent many sleepless nights worrying about media coverage. In all those years, though, we always scored.
Funniest story? We held a celeb party in our suite one year and Julian McMahon from Nip/Tuck attended. He was gifted a tiepin by one of our jewelry clients and after a few drinks he pierced his own ear with the not-so-sharp point on the pin. Blood everywhere, and a surgeon no less. Very silly…
Best memory? Typing up media alerts with my brilliant associate in The Four Seasons listening to Green Day’s “American Idiot” playing as loud as the Bose would go… We needed some distraction, tough client.
But this isn’t about Oscar, but about Emmy. True, TV doesn’t have all the glamour of film, especially when it is frequented by very human reality stars, but don’t we LOVE TV? Of course we do. There is a gutsiness about Emmy, she’s going to take her place in the sun, no matter what. We’ve done a lot of work around this award show, participated in some very high level sponsorships, and I was always pleasantly surprised, and relieved, by the friendliness of the proceedings. Who doesn’t love the BAFTA tea party and the Governor’s Ball? A great group of people in the Academy, parties that are actually fun – think HBO. I love Emmy, she's a good girl to have on your side. We salute you this week, may it be filled with excellent surprises!
Our agency often leverages Hollywood on behalf of our clients. Diamonds and gowns on the red carpet plus great press coverage can go a long way toward putting a brand on the map and keeping them there. Of course, to use this platform you have to work the "system" and let me tell you that can be no fun. In fact, on most days it can be the opposite of fun—what's that word? Work.
Hollywood is fickle, capricious and a downright moody lady. One day she loves you, the next she's totally forgotten your name. Just when you think you're in, you're out. A yes is most often a no, but you won't know that until it's too late.
Here are a few simple rules we've found helpful when navigating Hollywood's turbulent waters:
1) Never push, you look desperate. It's better to let something go than ruin your fragile reputation.
2) If it seems too good to be true it most certainly is, no exceptions...
3) Keep those relationships alive—graft works!
4) If they want what you have you'll know it because (drum roll) they want it! You'll see the difference when you're trying to pawn off something they don't want...
5) Everything takes a LOT longer than you think it will, so buckle up it's going to be long, bumpy ride...
Ok, just some thoughts, use them wisely!
This is a week of memories… I remember when. Well I do remember when I saw my first pair of Jimmy Choo shoes. Beverly Hills, Oscar week, L’Ermitage Hotel. One of my colleagues popped out to buy a pair because they “looked great and are SO comfortable.” The look then was sling back, not so high heel and yep, kinda fabulous.
I’ll tell you something, I don’t think making a name for yourself in the shoe department is the easiest thing to do. From a PR standpoint, getting great press on shoes can be a challenge, because they are on the feet after all. When we get one of our fashion clients shot on the red carpet, it’s all about the dress. We work pretty hard to make sure our jewelry is covered. But shoes. Wow.
We did a big to-do a few years ago when our client, Kwiat, partnered with Stuart Weitzman and did a pair of “million dollar” slippers for the Academy Award red carpet. I give his PR people credit, they did an incredible job getting press, and it’s just not easy. BUT here’s the thing. Of all our personal fashion items I think it’s safe to say that shoes rank pretty darn high. And Jimmy Choo broke out and made it happen, on the red carpet and off. They are a success story that other brands should consider studying. And now they are partnering with H&M to bring fabulous to the masses (not unlike other brands that have gone before, Stella, Karl Lagerfeld and Matthew Williamson). I think it’s a good thing. I’m a fan!
One thing Elizabeth Taylor is known for are those lavender hued eyes. At least that's what everyone says. I can't tell if they're purple or deep blue. Whatever they are, they are beautiful. Today, we talk about old Hollywood glamour and how it is currently influencing the red carpet. We also take note of the beauty looks, whether it's the up do or the matte red lips. But mostly, the clothes get talked about and then the jewelry.
Someone recently said (in the news) that ET was Hollywood's first "It Girl." Well, she wasn't. Clara Bow was. But ET was definitely a force of nature. Men swooned in her presence and made crazy decisions, like umm, I think I'll leave my wife for her. This was the 50s when that type of behavior was not the norm (and shouldn't be now, in my humble opinion).
I think that if ET wasn't the first "It Girl” she was definitely a style icon. And though we think of her mostly in terms of her jewels (that Richard Burton, he thought diamonds would do the trick!), I think when it comes to style it's her beauty that remains in our minds. Her luscious use of lipstick, her pronounced mole, those striking (heavily lined) eyes. And we're not simply referring to her role in “Cleopatra.”
Liz, you have always been stunning, your sweet voice, your adherence to your own inner truth and your ability to move us on and off the screen, will always be an inspiration. I am NOT a fan of making movie stars more than they are. They aren't going to change the world, but they do have a voice and when they use it they can be powerful. ET spoke up for things she believed in long before others were willing to go there (whether you agree with her or not). And she always looked good doing it. Go Liz!
Our agency reps jewelry and fashion brands that year on year vie for red carpet exposure. And year on year we show up, thanks to the tireless efforts of our team. It's always a bit of a struggle as you wrangle temperamental stylists (they are artists after all) and compete against the BIG brands with BIG budgets who PAY for their spot on the carpet. It's all a white knuckle experience as the E! pre-show airs and the team scans the celebs, especially the ones they've been negotiating with. Will they or won't they???
We've been doing this for years, and the anticipation and general freak out never gets that much better. But a little better, with a long line of success in your wake (January Jones, Jessica Lange, Olivia Wilde, Natalie Portman) does make it a less painful experience. So, as we move past Emmy and toward Oscar (not to mention our golden friend) I started wondering, will Emmy ever catch up to Oscar in terms of desire and panache? What separates them? TV vs. Film. Is film really that much more glamorous? Maybe. But maybe it's also the crush of award shows and all the build up that makes Oscar so exciting.
Oscar has been getting a bit tarnished these last few years, mainly in the ratings game. They've tried to spice up the proceedings, and last year was a great new step forward, but not sure if things will continue to slip. I sure hope not, that red carpet has spelled gold for several of our clients. But back to Emmy vs. Oscar. Here's what I think: Emmy has been gaining over the years and I think our golden boy may need to watch his back. It will be interesting to see how things shape up. I'm watching. Are you?
Francoise Sagan said it best—A dress makes no sense unless it inspires men to want to take it off you…
Placing beautiful jewels and clothing is a wonderful conundrum to have…which outfit is the best for each person and for each event. It’s as if I am lucky enough to have access to all of my client’s closets (by extension all of their fantastic resources as well)—RARE Vintage, Kwiat diamonds, Carelle fine jewelry, Verrier, Cynthia Steffe—and the opportunity to dress living Barbie dolls, some of the most stunning women in the world. My work affords me the opportunity to come in contact with some of the most interesting and stunning living dolls in the world. After all, half of this is making the correct choices for each personality and the other half is about making one moment into a memory. Each look should be inspirational. It should be as moving as the most beautiful painting that you have ever seen.
I was a romantic child, the little girl that always dreamed of the silver screen moment of being dressed in a cascading dress and massive necklace when the man of my dreams grabs me and kisses me. I found those moments in fashion catalogs and magazines. I remember receiving the Bergdorf Goodman catalog- I would wait until the mail man came and run out to steal it before my mother had a chance to take a look (she would be so angry) because I was so excited and inspired by the images in the Holiday book. Surrounded by all of my favorite books and magazines, I would read them from cover to cover—and then skim them again just to take in the breathtaking images of inspirational ladies like Sophia Loren and Jackie Kennedy.
Now, when the exciting and demanding emails come in from stylists to pull clothing and accessories, I wait anxiously to see which lovely lady (Kate Beckinsale, Angelina Jolie or Elisabeth Moss) and/or gentleman (Forest Whitaker) will be sauntering across the red carpet in one of our looks and how someone else interpreted our pieces. So here they are, some of my favorite moments. Some I have been a part of creating, and others were just too lovely to deny. I hope they inspire you.