Thursday, February 18, 2010

Kuchen Wear

So, back when I was working for BMW I was responsible for, and I quote, sourcing private-label apparel, accessories, timepieces and gift items for distribution in BMW and MINI dealerships as well as providing creative direction to designers and suppliers ensuring that all products are premium and brand relevant, end quote.

As a subsidiary, we had to get everything we produced locally for the US market approved by HQ in Germany. Let's just say there were differences of opinion regarding what was "brand relevant." I spent way too much time creating PowerPoint presentations for local product approvals and way too much time discussing what was and was not "brand appropriate," or "brand damaging." We felt that Germany was too restrictive. They felt that we didn't protect the brand values. For example, we offered adorable baby onesies and bibs that were good sellers. We had to stop selling them because what if a baby actually spit up on the logo? That, my friends, would be "brand damaging." I'm really not making this stuff up. We'd make a pink polo shirt and Germany would tell us that pink was not a "brand appropriate" color. Six months later, they'd come out with a light pink polo and we'd say, "I thought pink was verboten??" and they'd say, "It's not pink. It's blush white." So, as long as you don't actually call it pink it's not pink, right? Well, this isn't a baby bib, it's a miniature floor mat. Now can we sell them again? And so on.

A couple of weeks ago, Thomas brought me one of his BMW shirts that was on it's last legs. The cuffs were starting to fray and it was destined for the Goodwill box. I had it lying around for a few days thinking I'd clean out some stuff from my closet too when I remembered a tutorial I'd seen a while ago on the Internet. It was for ways to re-purpose a man's shirt and one of them was an apron. I got right on it. And this, Damen und Herren, is my "kitchen appropriate" creation. Of course, I had to incorporate pink somehow because I am small, and bitter, and jaded and just evil like that. And what about the sacred logo you ask? What if I do something incredibly "brand damaging" like splatter some sauerbraten sauce on it? No worries CI police, I would NEVER want to damage the brand so I just covered that bad boy with some pink rickrack. Like I said, evil.

My new apron debuted just in time for a special meal. But more on that on Sunday...

1 comment:

Lisa Kiene said...

Hysterical.....leaves me smiling and recalling flashbacks of Montblanc brand restrictions....and laughing that the restrictions seemed to subside when Helmut Newton became creative with the writing instruments.