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Why is Jacquemus's aesthetic so successful?

Simplicity is key

Why is Jacquemus's aesthetic so successful? Simplicity is key

“My name is Simon Porte Jacquemus. I like blue and white, stripes, sun, fruit, life, poetry, Marseille and the 80s”. 

In the short presentation that Simon Porte Jacquemus makes of himself on his Instagram channel is already enclosed an aesthetic, the moodboard of his brand. A type of aesthetic that has been perfectly channeled in the brand's latest campaign shot online starring Bella Hadid, portrayed without stylist or make-up, through FaceTime, as well as on the brand's Instagram channel, which has been the key to its success since its inception. Today Jacquemus is the brand with the fastest digital growth with a volume of 183,000 searches per month on Google and, like many successful brands, does not sell simple products but an idea of lifestyle through the representation of a well-defined aesthetic

What does Jacquemus mean?

If you were to answer the question, perhaps the brand's most famous designs such as the La Bomba hat or the Chiquito Bag would be in mind, but more likely you should think of a sunny country garden in the South of France, David Hockney's blue pools, a flamboyant fruit basket, muscular, shirtless boys and beautiful bikini-clad women in the sun – in a word of summer and youth. If Jacquemus's name evokes these images of youth and freshness, of country flowers, of aperitifs with friends and sunsets by the sea, it is thanks to the intuition of his founder and designer, Simon, that in ten years of career he has managed to create a collage of references that touch all the cornerstones of the Provençal and Mediterranean aesthetics, coming to include the paintings of Matisse and the installations of Christo , modernist architecture and in general a whole world made up of simple lines, naked bodies and solar colors – an aesthetic that lives as much on the Instagram profile of the brand as in the show of its collections and in its campaigns taken in Lanzarote or even presented in the form of painting, as in the case of the SS19 campaign, and going in direct contrast with the classic Parisian fashion brands, whose expressive codes are much more algid and stricter.

From an 18-year-old salesman from Comme des Garçon to his debut as an enfant prodige at Paris fashion week in 2012, Simon Porte Jacquemus's is the story of a great success and the future of the brand looks even brighter. According to the Introducing The NEXT 20 report published by Highsnobiety in collaboration with Lyst, Jacquemus was the most successful brand on the web and on social media, with an index of online press mentions that increased by 1116% after its last show, replicating the success of the SS20 show held in the lavender fields of Provence – one of the fashion moments of the year, put everywhere on the social media of the celebrities invited and that had increased the online searches of the brand by 1300%. This is precisely what Jacquemus's success is: in the ability to create moments and almost theatrical waits. As when in 2018 he published a post with the hashtag #NewJob, arousing all sorts of assumptions from the public, except then to show up at the press conference with a hoodie that read "New Job: L'Homme Jacquemus" : he was announcing the debut of his men's line. 

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Jacquemus is certainly not the only designer to manage his account in full and to be very present on social media – just think Virgil Abloh and Alessandro Michele – but it is the only case where the personal account of the designer and that of the brand are the same thing. The convergence between person and brand creates, in Jacquemus's social profile, a greater sense of human connection with followers, who see the behind-the-scenes of fitting and photoshoots, the personal and childhood photos of the designer, his inspirations and the brand's campaigns mixed into a single entity. This type of fiction creates a direct contact between Simon and his followers and reflects on the reputation of the brand also the impression of an accessible and down-to-heart brand – a narrative quite different from the algid and severe of The Celine by Hedi Slimane (designer famously opposed to the world of social media) but also to that of a brand like Gucci, more focused on merging together the bohemian and the aristocrat than to reflect on the simple pleasures of life.

The first Face Time campaign

For the brand's SS20 campaign, Bella Hadid posed naturally, without hair styling or makeup and even without clothes, echoed the same aesthetic typical of Jacquemus even with a campaign taken on FaceTime. It is in fact a series of very simple photos, the same that any girl could shoot in the solitude of her own room, but who also possessed the winking and genuine sensuality of an amateur erotic shot. 

After taking the photoshoot on FaceTime with Hadid, the designer shared the experience on his Instagram stories, insisting a lot about how stressed he was about the success of the photos and connection issues. Problems that we are all experiencing during quarantine and that Jacquemus is not ashamed to converse with his followers. While Abloh and other designers have a more aseptic and institutional communication Jacquemus is successful precisely because it shows its human side devoid of any alterigia or elitism.

Jacquemus' Instagram communication is not only aesthetically beautiful but also effective at the business level considered as the brand does not own physical retail and sells for the most part through e-commerce. The brand is in fact a marketing that is not invasive, therefore not forced – and that presents products with prices far more accessible than those of other fashion brands. Christopher Morence, who wrote the Highsnobiety report, underlines the recipe for the brand's social success: transparency, inclusiveness and competitive prices that, together with a very rich and consistent aesthetic, make Jacquemus an accessible luxury brand, with well-recognizable products and able to become immensely popular thanks to a personal and humble social promotion that establishes an emotional relationship with members of its community channeling in the experience of buying and possessing products. identify themselves. In other words, a perfect execution of the formula behind the New Luxury.

Being able to recognize the je-ne-sai-quoi that makes a popular product on Instagram, the influencer's instinct if you want to call it that, is the main strength of Simon Porte Jacquemus. On the subject, the designer recalled an anecdote from his SS18 show about the launch of the La Bomba hat:

«My team said, ‘Simon, no one is going to wear these huge hats, we’ll just make a few.’ We sold hundreds, […] If it’s cute on ­Instagram, it will sell. That’s just the world we live in».