Louis Vuitton to Gucci, why high-profile luxury brands are so focused on monograms?

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January 17, 2021 2:30 AM

A well-designed monogram that is both expressive, as well as captivating can act as a great tool for brand recall

The brand has also tapped models Liu Wen and Wang Xiangguo for its Chinese New Year 2021 campaign, featuring a limited-edition Thomas Burberry Monogram Motif inspired by the Chinese Year of the Ox.The brand has also tapped models Liu Wen and Wang Xiangguo for its Chinese New Year 2021 campaign, featuring a limited-edition Thomas Burberry Monogram Motif inspired by the Chinese Year of the Ox.

Motifs and monograms have timeless appeal. From grandmothers’ embroidering their initials on handkerchiefs to the Louis Vuitton monogram slung across the arm of every fashionista and now plastered across high streets, a good monogram is one which evokes sentiments.

Chef Yosuke Suga of the Tokyo-based restaurant Sugalabo is passionate about showcasing local Japanese ingredients in his unique establishment, welcoming a select few diners every evening. And so, Louis Vuitton Objets Nomades designer Tokujin Yoshioka designed a monogram-inspired charger plate, from which a variety of the restaurant’s crockery has been developed.

Then there is Louis Vuitton’s LV Escale bag collection for April. Infused with a tie-dye vibe, it is perfect for a laidback summer’s day. Best of all? The print (which is inspired by shibori, the age-old Japanese technique that consists of twisting and knotting the fabric before dying it) is available in a giant monogram.

Additionally, New York-based contemporary artist Urs Fischer, better known for his large-scale installations, has reimagined Louis Vuitton’s most distinctive Monogram pattern. One of the few artists to refashion the Maison’s iconic pattern completely since its creation, Fischer reinterpreted the Monogram’s flowers and LV initials in new hand-drawn, enlarged and distorted versions that he calls “memory sketches”. This new Monogram is a key decorative motif, featured throughout the collection. The collaboration also features a series of whimsical, animated characters created by the artist.

Last month, the brand also launched a kite for $10,400. It first appeared during the Spring/Summer 2019 show as a prop. However, it has now become a product made from technical nylon material and comes in a Monogram print. The kite measures 6×30 inches and comes with a monogram canvas carry case.

Saint Laurent’s newest addition (in November last year) is a suede in black and burgundy bags embossed with Cassandre’s iconic YSL logo in a classic style. Dior foundation’s couture case, too, boasts the fashion house’s iconic monogram pattern accentuated with hints of gold throughout.

In 1955, Gucci’s intertwined double Gs became a registered trademark. But last year, Gucci caused a social media splash by presenting an updated logo in an unusual handwritten font, with the opening of the luxury brand’s Fall Winter 2020 Men’s Collection.

Burberry, too, got a fresh rebranding in 2018 with a monogram replacing its typography-based brand name after Riccardo Tisci, Italian fashion designer and the new creative head of the British fashion house, took over as the label’s chief. The new logo arrived after media reports highlighted Burberry burning unsold clothing stock worth $32 million to protect its brand against counterfeiters.

The brand has also tapped models Liu Wen and Wang Xiangguo for its Chinese New Year 2021 campaign, featuring a limited-edition Thomas Burberry Monogram Motif inspired by the Chinese Year of the Ox.

A monogram is something that is personal, feels Tarini Manchanda, founder and creative director, The Initial Studio, a design studio, who has been associated with brands like BMW, Bombay Sapphire, Tinder, Kate Spade and Saudi Aramco India. “From heirlooms such as jewellery and cufflinks inscribed with one’s initials to leather pieces like old trunks embossed with your name, a monogram signifies something that is made especially for you, something that is not mass-produced. That sentiment of creating something bespoke is ageless and defines luxury, and what we aim to achieve at The Initial Studio. Brands and trends may come and go, but a unique product—that is made especially for you—will always remain in fashion.”

Closer home, beauty and personal care brand Oriflame’s monogram is not just a stamp of recognition, but a promise to change lives, feels Naveen Anand, senior director, regional marketing, Oriflame South Asia. “A well-designed monogram that is both expressive, as well as captivating can act as a great tool for brand recall. In a world swarming with thousands of brands in similar categories, a monogram can be your identity to exclusivity and individualism. At Oriflame, we believe we are distinct by way of the highest-quality, sustainable products we offer, and thanks to the distinctive business opportunity that we provide to our community. Simply put, a brand’s monogram becomes its very identity.”

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