Taylor Swift has unveiled her fashion collaboration with designer Stella McCartney, which goes on sale Friday at a New York City pop-up store, the same day her new album, Lover, debuts.
News of the upcoming Stella x Taylor Swift was announced in June, and Swift's passionate fans have been abuzz on social media about how the collection ties into the Grammy winner's latest album.
Adding to the much-hyped rollout: The entire Stella x Taylor Swift collection will only be available at The Lover Experience Taylor Swift Pop Up Shop, sponsored by Capital One, open Aug. 23 to Aug. 25 in New York City. (A specific location hasn't been announced.) A similar launch accompanied Swift's Reputation album release, in conjunction with AT&T, which featured photo ops with the throne from her "Look What You Made Me Do" music video, all of Swift's costumes from the video, and an extended merch collection.
"It’s been SO much fun to work/dream up cute stuff with my friend @stellamccartney to create a line inspired by my new album Lover," Swift wrote in her Instagram announcement today. "Can’t wait to show you what we've been working on and tell you more about the pop up shop at the @YouTube Live event this Thursday at 5p ET!"
Two Stella x Taylor Swift luxury items will also be available at Stella McCartney stores in New York and London, plus on StellaMcCartney.com, which teases the upcoming release, announcing: #StellaxTaylorSwift is almost here…
The Stella x Taylor Swift fashions are every bit as candy-colored as you'd expect from Swift's new era, and made from the sustainable materials synonymous with McCartney's brand.
The Lover merchandise includes t-shirts, sweatshirts, jackets, bags, and a reusable water bottle. Most of the items are made from sustainable organic cotton, according to a McCartney press release, which didn't detail prices, but described the merchandise as "affordable." There are also two luxury items, a bomber jacket and handbag, which the designer's office said cost $1,995 and $795, respectively.
The pastel-heavy collection features tie-dye, graffiti motifs, and winged hearts, evoking souvenirs sold on seaside boardwalks. One sweatshirt features a unicorn galloping through a glittering mountain valley, with the words "summer's a knife" written across the top of the photo. (Possibly a lyric from "Cruel Summer," the second track on Lover, which fans—given a preview by Swift—found to be particularly radio-friendly.) There are black-and-white, festival-inspired t-shirts and sweatshirts screen-printed with a hazy, rainbow photo of Benjamin Button, Taylor's newest cat. And a tie-dye sweatshirt printed with "there's a dazzling haze," a lyric from Lover's title track.
It's unclear whether the full collection will eventually be available online, or whether it will be limited to the pop-up store in New York. Previously, all of Swift's album merchandise has been sold direct to consumers through her web shop.
A creative partnership
The collection is a marriage of two revered and business-savvy artists on the cutting edge of popular culture.
Stella McCartney launched her eponymous label in 2001, which has since grown to women and mens' ready-to-wear, as well as handbags, shoes, and kids. She recently signed a partnership with the luxury goods business LVMH to design her own line of sustainable fashion. On the licensing front, McCartney produces eyewear, lingerie, swimwear, fragrances, and a long-term partnership with Adidas. The designer's clothing and accessories are available in 61 stores across100 countries, including London, New York, Los Angeles, Paris, Milan, Tokyo, Hong Kong, and Shanghai.
Taylor Swift has sold roughly 32.7 million albums, according to Billboard. Her song "Shake It Off" has been streamed 1.09 billion times. Lover presales are nearing 1 million albums, according to Variety, making it one of the most highly-anticipated albums ever. Lover's first single "ME!" has already set records.
On the retail front, Taylor has released three fragrances, Wonderstruck, Taylor, and Incredible Things, which were available at stores like Walmart and Sephora. Early in her career, she appeared in ads for Abercrombie and CoverGirl. The Stella collaboration marks Swift's first foray into luxury fashion.
Swift as influencer extraordinaire
Since her first album, she has developed a strong relationship with fans by interacting directly with them on social media platforms like Tumblr (and, previously, MySpace). She also manufactures a rich mythology around her music.
With earlier albums, she would include clues in her album cover inserts about her songs' often-famous subjects. Lately, she's been hiding clues about Lover songs and themes on social media and in music videos.
"I think that with music I’m always trying to expand the experience from just being an audio one," Swift told radio host Zane Lowe in an interview for Apple Music’s Beats 1. "Like, if I can turn it into something that feels symbolic or seems like a scavenger hunt or seems like some kind of brain game…I just want to entertain them on as many levels when I can.” She's invoked this idea of multi-platform entertainment in her Instagram Live announcements since, too.
Aside from her clues (which she calls Easter Eggs), Swift's been on a Lover promotional tour, often partnering with large corporations. So far, for Lover she has appeared in ads for Capitol One and Amazon Music. During the Reputation era, she worked extensively with AT&T and DirecTV through a multi-year deal.
(This post will be updated as more details become available.)
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