Loewe (fashion brand)

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LOEWE
Company typeSubsidiary (SA)
IndustryApparel, accessories
Founded1846; 178 years ago (1846)
FounderEnrique Loewe y Roessberg
Headquarters,
Spain
Key people
Jonathan Anderson
(Creative Director)
Pascale Lepoivre
(CEO)
ProductsClothing, cosmetics, fashion accessories, jewelry, perfumes, watches
RevenueIncrease US$341.1 million (2018)[1]
Increase US$13 million (2018)[1]
Number of employees
Increase 1,300 (2018)[2]
ParentLVMH
Websitewww.loewe.com

Loewe (/ˈlɛv/, Spanish: [loˈeβe])[3] (stylized as LOEWE) is a Spanish luxury fashion house specialising in leather goods, clothing, perfumes and other fashion accessories. Founded in 1846 in Madrid, Loewe is part of LVMH since 1996, and is the oldest luxury fashion house of the holding.[4]

The company was established in Madrid in 1846 by a group of Spanish leather craftsmen, and the brand was created in 1876 when Enrique Loewe joined the group. By the early 20th Century, many notable people took great interest in Loewe and Queen Victoria Eugenie became a regular customer. In 1905, Alfonso XIII granted them the Royal Warrant of Appointment and thus Loewe became Purveyor of the Royal Household of Spain.[5] The company quickly grew in popularity and was promoted by figures such as Ernest Hemingway, Ava Gardner, Rita Hayworth, Marlene Dietrich and Sophia Loren amongst others.[6]

History[edit]

A Loewe boutique in Madrid, 1905

Loewe was founded in 1846 in Madrid by a group of Spanish leather craftsmen, and the brand originated in 1876 when Enrique Loewe y Roessberg, a German merchant of Hessian origin, joined the group.[7] In 1905, Alfonso XIII granted Enrique Loewe y Hilton, a descendant of the original brand founder, the title of Purveyor to the Royal Court. His wife, Queen Victoria Eugenie, frequently visited the store on Príncipe de Madrid street.[8]

By the 1970s, Loewe was expanding into perfumes and fashion with the creation of the Loewe anagram logo, designed by Spanish painter Vicente Vela. Giorgio Armani and Laura Biagiotti subsequently designed Loewe's womenswear collections.[9]

In 1986, LVMH bought the rights to Loewe's international distribution.[9] It acquired Loewe completely in 1996. That year, Loewe had sales of about $200 million, among the smallest of LVMH's companies; ready-to-wear was responsible for 10 percent of that total.[10] By 1997, Narciso Rodriguez joined the company as new creative director[11] and the brand had its first Paris runway presentation at LVMH headquarters in the fall/winter 1998 season.[12] Both José Enrique Oña Selfa (2000–2007)[9] and Stuart Vevers (2008–2013)[13][14] followed. During Vever's tenure, Loewe scaled back fashion to concentrate on handbags, leather apparel and a substantial gift business based on leather picture frames and leather boxes.[15]

Jonathan Anderson became Loewe's creative director in 2013.[16] His first ready-to-wear collections for Loewe were presented in 2014. He has also been deploying a series of publicity campaigns by Steven Meisel and Damien Ropero for the stillife.[17]

Since 2014, Loewe's headquarters – including the design team, which had previously been based in Madrid – has been located on Place Saint-Sulpice in Paris.[18] The company remains based in Spain. Manufacture, particularly of leather goods, takes place in Barcelona and Getafe, near Madrid.[19]

Loewe in Osaka, Japan

Members of the Spanish royal family, including Queen Sofía and Queen Letizia, have been seen several times wearing Loewe handbags.[20]

Following high-profile collaborations, including designing several custom performance looks for American singer Beyoncé's Renaissance World Tour and appointing South Korean rapper Taeyong as a brand ambassador, Loewe topped the Lyst's Hottest Brand Index for the first time in the second quarter of 2023,[21] a position previously held by Prada.[22]

Loewe store in Hong Kong

Locations[edit]

Loewe stores are located worldwide. In 2014, Loewe's 143 stores were concentrated mainly in Spain and Japan, which respectively had 37 and 27 locations.[23] The first London shop opened in 1963,[9] on Mayfair's Mount Street.[24] 

Loewe opened its first American store in New York, a three-story shop at the Trump Tower,[25] in 1983;[26] it closed 1993.[10] Today, the company has four stores in the US: Miami's Design District (since 2016),[15][27] the Wynn in Las Vegas (since 2018), New York (since 2019),[28] and Rodeo Drive in Los Angeles (since 2022).[29]

In 2016, Loewe opened Casa Loewe Madrid, the brand's first flagship in Madrid and – with 10,750 square feet (999 square metres) – its largest store in the world. It is located in the ground floor of the company's head office in a landmark 19th-century building.[30] In 2019, Loewe outgrew its London store in Mount Street and opened Casa Loewe at 41-42 New Bond Street.[31]

A leather handbag of Loewe in the Times Square store

Loewe Foundation[edit]

In 1988, Enrique Loewe y Lynch, great-grandchild of the firm's creator, founded the Loewe Foundation, a private cultural foundation that supports cultural events and exhibitions.[32] Today, his daughter Sheila Loewe is the President of the foundation supporting design and craftsmanship.[33] The foundation received a Gold Medal of Merit in the Fine Arts from the Spanish government in 2002.[34] Following an initiative of designer Jonathan Anderson, the Loewe Foundation Craft Prize was established in 2017.[35]

Campaigns[edit]

Loewe's global brand ambassadors have included Penélope Cruz (2013–2015),[36] Josh O'Connor (since 2017),[37] Tang Wei (since 2022), South Korean girl group Nmixx (since 2022),[38] Taylor Russell (since 2022),[39] Taeyong (since 2023),[40][41] Yang Mi (since 2023),[42][43] Jamie Dornan (since 2024)[44][45][46] and Lim Ji-Yeon (since 2024).[47] Other celebrities who have featured in the brand's advertisement campaigns include Gisele Bündchen (2017),[48] Tracee Ellis Ross (2021),[49] Gillian Anderson (2021),[50] Greta Lee (2023)[51] and Maggie Smith (2023).[52]

For his first Loewe ad campaigns, Jonathan Anderson worked with Steven Meisel;[53] he has since worked with Tyler Mitchell (2020) and Juergen Teller (since 2021).[54][55]

In 2024, Loewe Crafted World exhibition opens in Shanghai. [56]

Branding evolution[edit]

Legal issues[edit]

In 2019 lawsuit brought to the Tribunal de commerce de Paris, Loewe invoked a non-compete case related to its employment of designer Bruno Sialelli who became artistic director at Lanvin at a time when he was still bound by commitments linked to his prior position.[57] As part of an out-of-court settlement in 2020, Loewe and Lanvin reached an agreement.[58]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Loewe ingresa 236 millones en 2018 y paga un dividendo de 16 millones a LVMH (Conversion to dollars based on currency exchange the 31st December 2018)". Expansión. 3 September 2019. Archived from the original on 11 September 2022. Retrieved 21 January 2020.
  2. ^ "Loewe Careers". Loewe Official Site. Archived from the original on 28 July 2022. Retrieved 21 January 2020.
  3. ^ Forvo Team. "Loewe pronunciation: How to pronounce LOEWE in Spanish, German". Archived from the original on 18 December 2020. Retrieved 23 April 2023.
  4. ^ "Jonathan Anderson: "Fashion is a competition"". Vogue. 28 September 2018. Archived from the original on 14 December 2019. Retrieved 21 January 2020.
  5. ^ Melissa Magsaysay (9 September 2011), Luxury leather label Loewe lands in L.A. Archived 13 February 2023 at the Wayback Machine Los Angeles Times.
  6. ^ "Loewe Handbags: Fiercely Spanish It-Bags". The Italist. 24 June 2016. Archived from the original on 27 June 2020. Retrieved 23 January 2020.
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  8. ^ "Modapedia: Loewe". Vogue. Archived from the original on 19 December 2019. Retrieved 21 January 2020.
  9. ^ a b c d Jamie Huckbody (17 October 2002), The king of leather Archived 26 June 2020 at the Wayback Machine The Independent.
  10. ^ a b Constance C.R. White (17 June 1997), Rodriguez Joins Loewe Archived 8 September 2020 at the Wayback Machine New York Times.
  11. ^ Suzy Menkes (17 June 1997), In Fashion Chess, More New Moves Archived 26 June 2020 at the Wayback Machine International Herald Tribune.
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  14. ^ Eric Wilson (24 June 2013), Vevers Lands Top Spot at Coach Archived 23 October 2020 at the Wayback Machine New York Times.
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  26. ^ Bernadine Morris (21 September 1983), Loewe Leather Arrives Archived 5 July 2021 at the Wayback Machine New York Times.
  27. ^ Tilly Macalister-Smith (3 December 2015), Loewe opens new store-cum-gallery in Miami’s Design District Archived 15 June 2020 at the Wayback Machine Wallpaper.
  28. ^ Katherine Bernard (19 December 2019), Loewe Opens a Store Archived 15 June 2020 at the Wayback Machine New York Times.
  29. ^ Booth Moore (16 November 2022), EXCLUSIVE: Loewe’s First L.A. Store Is Filled With Sun, Ceramics and a Bust of Justin Bieber Archived 15 January 2023 at the Wayback Machine Women's Wear Daily.
  30. ^ Miles Socha (17 November 2016), ‘Think Loewe,’ Jonathan Anderson Tells Spain Archived 5 February 2023 at the Wayback Machine Women's Wear Daily.
  31. ^ "Jonathan Anderson's Casa Loewe Feels Like The Home Of A Fabulous Collector". British Vogue. 25 April 2019. Archived from the original on 8 August 2022. Retrieved 3 March 2022.
  32. ^ "Loewe Foundation ¡Madrid!". Madrid Official Tourism Website. 22 September 2016. Retrieved 16 November 2016.[permanent dead link]
  33. ^ "Loewe Foundation, Madrid, Spain". Google Arts & Culture. Archived from the original on 11 September 2022. Retrieved 3 March 2022.
  34. ^ "El Inaem renueva el convenio con la Fundación Loewe para el patrocinio de la Compañía Nacional de Danza". Gobierno de España, Ministerio de Educación, Cultura y Deporte. 27 April 2016. Archived from the original on 15 November 2017. Retrieved 16 November 2016.
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  39. ^ Miles Socha (2 November 2022), Loewe Names Taylor Russell a Global Ambassador Archived 15 January 2023 at the Wayback Machine Women's Wear Daily.
  40. ^ Socha, Miles. "EXCLUSIVE: Loewe Adds K-Pop Sensation Taeyong as Global Ambassador". WWD. WWD. Archived from the original on 20 June 2023. Retrieved 20 June 2023.
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  43. ^ "Yang Mi Is Loewe's Newest Global Ambassador". WWD. Retrieved 3 October 2023.
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  46. ^ "Loewe names Jamie Dornan as its new brand ambassador". Fashion Network. Retrieved 11 January 2024.
  47. ^ "Lim Ji-Yeon Joins LOEWE as New Brand Ambassador". Dscene. Retrieved 7 February 2024.
  48. ^ Robert Williams (1 March 2017), Loewe Taps Gisele Bündchen for Fall Campaign Women's Wear Daily.
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  50. ^ Miles Socha (28 September 2021), Gillian Anderson Wears an Eye Mask in Loewe Campaign Women's Wear Daily.
  51. ^ Kristopher Fraser (18 September 2023), Greta Lee Features in Loewe’s ‘Botanical Rainbow’ Perfume Campaign Women's Wear Daily.
  52. ^ Ellie Violet Bramley and Lauren Cochrane (27 October 2023), Loewe and behold: how older models are casting a spell on fashion The Guardian.
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  55. ^ Josh O’Connor Models a Sexy Oyster: Shirt in the Loewe Pre-Fall 22 Campaign Archived 13 February 2023 at the Wayback Machine Interview, 23 May 2022.
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  57. ^ Paris Court Sets Hearing for Lanvin, LVMH Non-compete Case Women's Wear Daily, 10 April 2019.
  58. ^ Mimosa Spencer (6 February 2020), EXCLUSIVE: Loewe, Lanvin Reach Agreement in Non-compete Case Women's Wear Daily.