Sunday afternoons usually aren’t the best time to rouse fashion industry professionals out of bed for an event--especially when it’s below freezing out--but when it’s Donna Karan’s name on the invitation, they flock in droves.
And that’s just what happened on Sunday at the premiere of Haven’t We Met Before, Karan’s new hosiery commercial conceived and directed by Anjelica Huston, starring Felicity Jones and Smash’s Jack Davenport. Projected onto a wall inside Karan’s Urban Zen store in Manhattan’s West Village, the commercial (formatted as the short, artistic kind of film that’s become de rigueur for online fashion advertisements) follows a young woman (Jones) as she readies herself for an evening out, with hosiery obviously playing a key part of that process. She sits at a bar to meet Davenport, who whispers sweet and charmingly crass British nothings into her ear until they run home—revealing that they were a couple all along. But hey, mild role-playing is never a bad idea if you ask us—or the millions of women who have read Fifty Shades.
So how did Davenport prepare for a starring role in a hosiery ad? “I didn’t. I did that years ago, it was just a phase,” he told Fashionista. We inquired how that phase went: “Tightly packed, thanks for asking,” he replied. Noted.
"Haven’t We Met Before", released online, is a new format for Karan, who’s overseen her brand’s shift towards digital campaigns. “It’s very funny I’m doing a thing on, what is it oh god, I’m selling a product right now for Haiti on…Twitter? I think it will be very interesting to see what happens,” she told Fashionista, “I think the Internet is brilliant from an awareness point of view.”
But really, the whole thing had us wondering how a powerful designer like Karan had linked up with an equally powerful force in the entertainment world like Huston. Was there some sort of HBIC networking conference where they linked up? Well, sort of actually. “We met through Barbra Streisand who is a friend of Donna’s,” Houston explained to Fashionista. This led us to speculate what happens when the three of them hang out. Do they pull a Kate Moss and wreck the halls of the Plaza Athénée? “It doesn’t get crazy, it’s just really interesting to hang out with two women who are at the forefront of what they do.”
Huston, who was one of Richard Avedon’s favorite models in the '70s, has encountered her fair share of fashion, too. But what does she think about the fast-fashion of today? “Some of it is pretty good and I love that I can go get a scarf for $12, I think that’s great,” she explained, “I think those good designers working for these mass outlets is nice, you see a lot of people looking a lot better than they used to!”
Check out the film below.
All photos: BFA