In the 1980s, fashion brands began putting their logos on everything. Here, we chart their recent rise to prominence
Before ready-to-wear became standard practice, made-tomeasure was a common choice when it came to getting a piece of clothing. In the 1950s, it became popular among Parisian women to collect sewing patterns — the garment template released periodically in magazines — so they could bring the pattern to a tailor’s shop or sew it themselves at home.
However, self-sewn clothes had all but disappeared by the 1980s as ostentatious, showy styles took the lead. Attire became highly conspicuous, such as Madonna’s garish look in the 1985 film Desperately Seeking Susan, Joan Collins’s powerful woman’s shoulder pads and the yuppies’ preppy upscale styling that rose in parallel with the increase of wealth in many societies including the US, Britain and Hong Kong.
People seemed to be splashing heaps of cash on clothes and desired more visibility. Fashion companies smelled a business opportunity to increase their value by elevating their brand profiles, so they spent enormously on marketing and ad campaigns. Logos evolved from a differentiating name to a strong branding force and a status symbol.
From the decadent ’80s to today, fashion brands have embraced marketing with glamour and creativity, putting their logos under the spotlight. Eminent players in the ’80s and ’90s included emerging American jeans brands such as Jordache, Calvin Klein and Guess, which put their distinctive logos on the back DesperatelySeekingSusan
Clockwise from top left: Moschino womenswear, SS17. Vuitton Monogram Colors collection. (1985) poster. Calvin Klein underwear.