Thursday, March 24, 2011

Harry Winston: After the Ads

In the modeling world we make such a big fuss over campaigns, but rarely do we get to assess how effective they are. So imagine my delight when I came across this article from WWD about Harry Winston jewelry sales. As we all know, Freja fronted their most recent ad campaign.

For the fourth retail quarter ending on January 31st, Harry Winston reported a 60% sales gain and a net income of $9.9 million dollars. Thing were already looking up for the company when they reported their third quarter results back in December. But sales stayed strong throughout the fourth quarter and beat analysts' expectations. So why am I talking about this? Because Freja's ads hit market saturation during this fourth quarter period (Nov-Jan).

Am I saying that Freja is the only reason why sales were so good? No, of course not. Yet I can't help but to think she certainly played a part. After all, she's been proven to sell as Franca has showed us:
"On July, 2010, three fashion magazines used the same Miu Miu dress, Vogue Uk, Elle Uk and W in America. Vogue UK had a model on the cover, Elle UK a singer - Lily Allen - and W Eva Mendes. In England sales were higher. Freja is the new icon for models. Eva Mendes didn't have an impact on W."
And where is a large majority of Freja's fan base located? Asian countries like China, Japan and Korea. Freja seems to have an unexplainable and ferocious appeal over there that perhaps no other model has. Her Asian fans are voracious when it comes to her and you can see that in the sites, forums and blogs that they've set up. Coincidentally (or not), Harry Winston sales in Asia were up 138% while sales in the US and Europe were only up 79% and 27% respectively.

Yes, everyone knows that Asia is the emerging market right now, but since Freja appeals to so many fans in Asia, I'm going to propose that she has great appeal to general consumers in Asia as well. So picking her as the face of the campaign made commercial sense (even though it didn't necessarily make the most fashion model sense at first), and it certainly seems to have paid off as well. Fourth quarter gains, good numbers, increasing sales; Freja and her ads did what they were supposed to do.

Of course, I don't really claim to know much about sales analysis. This is just where my mind went when I read the WWD article. I do consider myself somewhat of a Freja expert though, so that has to count for something, right? ;)

Some day, I'd love to get my hands on some Chanel sales figures......anyway, we should be proud of our girl. And we should also hope that some head honcho of a major cosmetics brand is putting as much thought into the matter as I am. High fashion campaigns. Check. Jewelry campaign. Perfume campaign. Check. Big time beauty contract? To be determined......

Monday, March 21, 2011

A Construction Worker Who Collects Rocks

Since we're sitting firmly in the quiet that comes post show season and pre campaign casting frenzy, I thought I'd share this snapshot of Freja from five years ago:

"Has been modeling for a year. Would have been a construction worker in a nother life. Lives in Copenhagen, Addicted to shopping and sleeping. Collects beach rocks. Q: Which three things would you take with you to a desert island? A: My lover, my bed and a private jet, so I could leave if I got bored."
File this under things I didn't know: Freja used to (or still does?) collect beach rocks. I love digging up old stuff like this because it's so interesting to think of how a person develops and what changes they go through in a lifetime, or even in a matter of a few years. And with models, it's so rare that they're actually around long enough for us to fondly remember their "early years" and look back on their career trajectory with such nostalgia. In this context, 2006 seems like ages ago, doesn't it?

If this snapshot were done today, I wonder what things would change and what things would remain the same? Everything would probably change, because that's what humans do; we change. Even if we look the same on the outside, our daily experiences shift us little by little until we're new versions of ourselves. So I'm going take a venture and propose that this snapshot would read something like this today:

"Has been modeling for 6 years. Would have been a musician in another life. Lives in New York. Addicted to her Balenciaga leather jacket and cigarettes. Collects Guitars." :)

As for the question of things to take to a desert island, your guess is as good as mine. In another five years, maybe things will read in an entirely different manner. But that's all just part of the fun; because in the end, the change and uncertainty is what keeps things relevant and keeps all of us tuned in for the ride.

Image Credits: My scan

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Lagerfeld Loyalty

For three years in row now, Freja has been the face of Karl Lagerfeld eyewear. So even though the clothing part of Karl's namesake line has folded, the eyewear component is still going strong as evidenced by these new SS11 campaign images:

Ph: Karl Lagerfeld
Styling: Felipe Mendes
Other Models: Baptiste Giabiconi

It's refreshing to see this kind of loyalty. Yeah I'm biased, and yeah if it were another model I'd probably be annoyed as hell. But there is something to be said for this type of devotion, reliance and familiarity. Especially when everything else in fashion seems to change faster and faster with each passing season. Change is good, but we do need some constant anchors keeping us grounded with our heads on straight. Otherwise, we're just flying about all over the place with nothing to cling on to. So for me, Freja by Karl is a constant. It's a soothing comfort. It is always good? No. Does it always make me feel good? Yes. It's like mac and cheese, chicken pot pie, ice cream sundaes or any other thing we indulge in whenever we just want to shut the world out. Your "comfort food" might not always be good for you, but it always makes you happy. And when (heaven forbid) the day comes that Freja and Karl stop working together, I will be crushed. So let's just hope that day is a long way off into the future. For at a time when the fate of Dior, Givenchy, and possibly a few other design houses lie in such uncertainty, I want my constant now more than ever before.



So I say thank you Karl! For your impeccable taste in models, and for your loyalty and support of said models. Now may Freja get the Chanel F/W 1112 campaign....amen.

Image Credits:,, 2b Management Facebook via tFS member tentalicious

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Numero and Videos

Hooray! We finally have some proper scans of Freja's Numero editorial:

Bal de la Couture
Numero #121 March 2011
Ph: Karl Lagerfeld
Styling: Capucine Safyurtlu
Other Models: Arizona Muse

No wonder Freja and Arizona were photographed together so much this past runway season in Paris. They probably became fast friends after working in such close and intimate conditions. "Why yes, you're naked and pressed up against me....where are you from again? And what's your son's name?" Nothing like some good old fashion nudity and gender bending to bring people together and get them to drop their pretenses.

Starting with a Vogue Italia cover and editorial back in January, editorials in Vogue US and W magazine for March
, and now this Numero cover and editorial, Freja and Arizona have worked together so much I'm beginning to wonder if they're a package deal or something. If they were actually at the same agency, the idea wouldn't seem too far fetched.

Anyway, I don't mind Arizona at all. In fact, I'm quite in love with her print work. She's wonderful in front of the camera and I have a soft spot, lots of admiration and respect for single mothers. Every time I see her in another editorial or campaign or whatever, I have the urge to yell "you go girl, you get that money," while Destiny's Child's Independent Women Part 1 plays in my head......but I'm just weird like that. Damn, I used to love that song. Still do!

So back to the work. This editorial is nothing to write home about aesthetically. Though I do think it's quite beautiful in it's simplicity. Nothing to distract from the clothes, yet the subtle interactions of the models make things interesting enough. (And is it just me, or does Karl have a thing for Freja as a guy and conversely, Baptiste as a woman?) I'm just happy to see Freja being photographed for an editorial by Karl again. Maybe he's getting ready for another Chanel campaign? ;) I sure hope so...... And I also hope for more work with Freja and Arizona because they have good chemistry on the page, and they compliment each other pretty well.

In other, semi related news, I have a few videos to post. The first is a behind-the-scenes look at the recent Chanel F/W 11 show via You get a good sense of the atmosphere and a glimpse of Freja towards the end during the runway rehearsal:

The second video is yet another H&M tv spot. I swear they churn these things out like butter, but it's nice to see Freja finally getting her due and recognition on the commercial front. It's something that I've wanted to have happen for quite a while now, so it's awesome to actually see it come to fruition:

Image Credits: scans by tFS member skalty, videos courtesy of and

Friday, March 11, 2011

Valentino Perfume Campaign!

Once again, thanks to a comment from one of the amazing readers of this blog, we have some great news to end the month on! Freja just shot a perfume campaign for Valentino!!

The news comes via WWD:
"Director Johan Renck, who has just wrapped filming the latest Valentino perfume ad campaign, starring Freja Beha Erichsen, said he’s eager to work with Swedish actress Noomi Rapace, of “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo” fame."
Two print campaigns and now a perfume campaign!? Chiuri and Piccioli sure do love her. Anyway, no other details to report as of now. But congrats to Freja for the get. These contracts are what most models dream of and work towards. And thank you to the anonymous commenter for the tip. This blog could most certainly not run without it's lovely and perceptive readers. :)

Side note: To any readers in Japan, or readers with family or friends in Japan, our thoughts and prayers are with you.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

The Final Tally - FW1112

What month it's been. The fashion season is officially over and what started out on such a down beat for Freja fans ended on a high note with a great turnout in Paris! Arguably the most important and most meaningful of the four cities when it comes to impact, important impressions and future bookings. That's up for debate of course.

I'm a little sad that there's no need for a detailed recap like previous seasons since Freja walked so few shows, but oh well! More time to play the campaign guessing game. If you're interested, previous season recaps are here: SS10, FW1011, SS11

FW1112 TOTAL: 14

London: No shows walked

Milan: No shows walked

New York: No shows walked

Alexander McQueen (O)
Chanel (O)
Chloe (O)
Haider Ackermann
Louis Vuitton
Miu Miu
Valentino (C)
Yves Saint Laurent (C)


Number of.....
  • Cities walked: 1
  • Shows walked: 14
  • Shows opened: 3
  • Shows closed: 2
  • Outfits total: 23
In order of appearance...............

Biggest surprise of the season for me was seeing Freja open McQueen. Show I was most happy to see her at is a three-way tie between Haider Ackermann, Celine and Chloe. The former two because I love the clothes so much, the later one because it was absolute heaven to see Freja open and Aymeline close. Best look was Freja's stunning YSL closing number. Talk about breathtaking. Anyway, another successful season down. I feel like Freja made the right choice by taking some time off early in the season and coming back for the important shows. Standard supply vs. demand. :) And it would have been awkward to see her not walk for Chanel, Louis Vuitton or Valentino since she's in all their current campaigns. For me, not seeing her at her usual NY and Milan shows made me miss her and realize I was taking her a bit for granted. I suppose there is a lot of truth to the saying "absence makes the heart grow fonder."

In any case, much like how there's no crying in baseball, there's no rest in fashion. You can bet all the models are now jetting off around the world trying to secure their placements and bookings for the very fast approaching campaign rigmarole. That being said, I hope Freja scores Chanel again. That dark, masculine collection was tailor made for her. And yes, as much as I'm over the masculine side of Freja, I really can't think of anyone else who would be as great a fit for the collection as she is. Don't let us down Karl. Not now. Lets go for a record 5 times in a row, 7 times over all! I'd also love to see her for Chloe again, and something like Miu Miu. Lots of wishful thinking I know; but with Freja anything's possible.

Image Credits:

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Redux: F/W 2007

What a strange season so far. All the places you expect to see Freja (Stella, Isabel) and all the places you don't expect to see her but hope to anyway (Givenchy, McQueen) have switched on us. Her absence at the two aforementioned shows is most certainly made up for by her appearance at the later two. Neither of which she's walked since the Fall/Winter 2007 season back in February of 2007. It's a redux! A strange, surreal but pleasant one.

Givenchy and Alexander McQueen 2007

Givenchy and Alexander McQueen (O) 2011

Amazing how someone can seemingly change so little on the outside over the course of four years. Lets do the time warp again. It's just a jump to the left, and then a step to the right, put your hands on your hips.....whoops sorry, off topic. Models must really have that mysterious and enviable ageless gene.

Anyway, just when you think you know what to expect, Freja changes it up on us again and reminds us to expect the unexpected when it comes to her. In all the time I've been blogging about her, overturned expectations is a constant theme. And yet somehow I'm still surprised each time. Maybe I should just make "Expecting the unexpected since 2005" this blog's motto. :)

Image Credits:,

Sunday, March 6, 2011

New Directions? Collaborators?

Paris is nearly over and Freja is there in full force, but the biggest story for me is her appearance at two shows this week. Hakaan and Givenchy, to be specific.

The last time Freja walked for Givenchy was back during the F/W 07/08 season. Four years later she shows up once again on Tisci's catwalk, also having walk for the first time in Hakaan's runway show earlier in the week.

Now what's so interesting about this you might ask? It's no secret that both Hakaan and Ricardo have the blessing and heavy backing of photographers Mert & Marcus and Carine Roitfeld. So what does it mean that Freja showed up at both shows this season? And all of this in light of Carine's recent resignation and uncertain future placement? Maybe nothing at all, other than a simple casting decision. But I'd like to think it means something more in regards to Freja's future editorial and campaign bookings.

Just something to think about and mull over on this Sunday afternoon. Castings in Paris have seemed unpredictable all week so I'm not saying this means anything at all. On the other hand, it would be nice to see another new direction for Freja's career, and new collaborators for her to work with.

Image Credits:,