this was one of the most fun campaigns of s/s...
glad to see they are continuing it for f/w...
Sylvia is back. The fictional leading lady of Barneys New York's mailer last season has returned for fall with more tales of her fashionable adventures ó thanks to the store's inventive creative director Simon Doonan.
In the first mailer, while wearing clothes from designers including Lanvin, Balenciaga and Prada, she met her future husband, got married and was accused and charged with killing him. Doonan said he came up with the Sylvia theme after rereading "Valley of the Dolls" and "Mildred Pierce."
"I thought it was time we did our own rags-to-riches melodrama," he explained. "We have always raised the bar high with our mailers. They are like our windows ó people expect something idiosyncratic."The store sent out 235,000 mailers last season and is planning to deliver 260,000 for fall. A spokeswoman declined to provide production costs.
The fall mailer has Sylvia fleeing from prison, moving to Hollywood and meeting her prince, an heir to the "Forthright squillions," only to find out she is no longer a wanted felon and has been acquitted of all charges. Wearing a Nina Ricci gown, Sylvia ends her tale by shunning Hollywood and relocating to an African country to live happily ever after with her husband.
Doonan said the store received an overwhelmingly positive response so far. "People went nuts over the first one," he said. "They seemed hugely grateful that we had made the effort to put some explicit narrative into fashion." He added, "The consumer is tired of looking at pictures of gals in frocks. They want a bit of drama and some backstory, maybe even a murder or two."
Doonan said the project was a group effort ó he wrote the story, art director Suzi Jones worked with photographer Terry Tsiolis and fashion director Julie Gilhart allocated which designer went into each scene, featuring model Malgosia Bela.