Luxury Openings at Louis Vuitton
“Shopping for labels, shopping for love, Manolo and Louis is all I’m thinking of”
Fergie sings the song Labels or Love for the movie “Sex and the city”. The song is for all the women out there who are chasing brands over boys. In the first two lines of the song a famous brand is mentioned. Louis Vuitton. A great icon, which over time turned into a brand, moreover it embodies luxury.
I walked in the seminar room thirty minutes before the appointed time not because I knew I was going to run out of a seat but because I was so eager to know more about the biggest global luxury brand. The speakers entered the room and you could sense LV. They walked in carrying bags which girls only dream about. They carried their elegant monogram prints and settled to start the seminar.
The first speaker was Mr. Joshua Paulino. He takes care of training in Philippines and Guam. He started his awesome talk by introducing LVMH. LVMH stands for Louis Vuitton, Moët and Hennessy. It is the world’s largest global leading luxury group. It has 60 prestigious brands and 2400 stores worldwide. This brand is active in 5 sectors mainly wines and spirits, clothing and leather goods, cosmetics and perfumes, watches and fine jewelry and lastly selective retailing. The reputable Mr. Bernard Arnault now operates this group.
After the enlightening introduction Mr. Joshua Paulino focused more on Louis Vuitton. He circled around three questions: who, what and how long has Louis Vuitton been around. Louis Vuitton has been in the market for the last 160 years. Mr. Louis Vuitton himself started this brand. He was born in 1821 in the Jura region of France. He lived in a mountainous, forest region and this is where his passion for trunks and canvas began. At a young age he left home and chose to be an apprentice. Throughout his journey he learned that he had skills to be a professional packer. During that era women considered their clothing as pieces of art. They were treated with immense fragility and this is what Mr. LV was an expert at. He opened his first trunk shop behind and actual store in 1854. His first ever invention was trunks. He sooner realized that canvas was better than leather because of its lighter weight. As time went by people started copying his designs and this is why he started branding them. One of the last marks Mr. LV left behind is his beautiful Damier Print. To date this print is much preferred because this was the print that Mr. LV created and left behind as his legacy and became one of the most known prints in the world.
His son, George Vuitton took over and brought the company to new heights. He started at the age of 16 while studying in London. He opened the store in London in 1885. George had two significant contributions to the company. He came up with the classic monogram print. He made this print in memory of his father. Rumor has it that this print was inspired by either Zen, flowers or the kitchen floor in their home. Another contribution of George Vuitton is the pick-proof lock, which is given with Louis Vuitton bags.
Gaston-Louis Vuitton, the grandson of Mr. Louis Vuttion and the son of Mr. George Vuitton was the one who gave the brand a new image. He started at the age of 14 and started collecting the vintage trunks of his late grand father. He also made traveling easy with style as he came up with the “Keepall”. In addition to his image changing movement at that era, Gaston-Louis Vitton wanted to erase the common notion that Louis Vuitton bags were “Grandma bags”. Hence he gave Louis Vuitton bags new image by making them more appealing to young women and since the 1950’s ladies started using LV bags as accessory.
Only in 1987 did LVMH come out as a group. In 1997 the leading designer Marc Jacobs partnered with the company. He brought in a new impression to LV. He partnered with graffiti artists around the globe and had gone wild from changing Louis Vuitton classic, elegant prints to wild funky designs, which was greatly appreciated. However after a few years the company decided to bring old school back to LV. Louis Vuitton bags continue to amaze patrons as they can be personalized by putting the owner’s initials. This movement is called “Mon Monogarm” which means “My Monogram”.
The one thing that really struck me during the seminar was when the first speaker said that “Our Biggest asset is people: they are also the biggest investment”. Louis Vuitton, a huge luxury brand promotes number one service because they carry three main values that they imprint in all of their staff and employees that carry the name of Louis Vuitton. The values teach people to be creative and innovative, aim for product excellence and lastly act as entrepreneurs. Working for LV is a dream for most but now it’s an opportunity that is given to all Enderun students.
Louis Vuitton Philippines was invited by Ms. Anna Tuason to give a talk in campus and this is how they warmed up on the idea that Enderun students can try going on internships in LV stores. The First internship started during the holidays during which students worked for a month and considered as holiday associates. It was actually a part time job for which they got paid. This activity was a trial to prove that Enderun students are capable of managing such a busy week for LV. This is in line with the company’s program called Retail Management trainee wherein they get fresh graduates to run their stores and develop their skills so that in time they may turn into general managers themselves. After this trial project, Enderun is partnering with LV to give more students the opportunity to either take an internship in LV or be a holiday associate.
Seminars like the one conducted by LV motivate young minds to explore and believe more in their dreams. Enderun students should draw inspiration from a dress packer who came up with the brand Louis Vuitton, and strive to be as successful as he was. So ladies, lets take a leap of faith and sing with Fergie.
“I already know what my addiction is
I be looking for labels, I ain’t looking for love
I shop for purses while I walk out the door
Don’t cry, buy a bag and then get over it”