Kenneth Cole is celebrating 35 years with a spotlight on social justice.
Kenneth Cole toasts 35 years, and Hunter’s hot-air balloon flies high.
Known for his deep commitment to activism, Kenneth Cole is celebrating his brand’s 35th year with a campaign that spotlights people who have inspired him through the years.
“I always felt that if I can have a relationship that’s bigger than what is on your body, then [I can] sustain any given trend. It’s what we stand for,” the designer told FN at his anniversary party last week in New York. Cole has been a pioneer in tackling major social issues, from raising awareness about HIV in the 1980s to spotlighting same-sex marriage in the early 2000s. Now, in his new social and digital campaign, titled “35 Years Bold,” individuals including Robert Redford, Cheyenne Jackson, Alan Cumming and Diane von Furstenberg will be recognized for the causes they’ve championed. “I look to celebrate and applaud individuals. I want to give them a platform and shine a light on what it is they feel is important, and connect their brands with mine,” Cole said.
Separately, the designer is teaming up with Vic Mensa.
The rapper and activist stars in the brand’s fall ’18 ad campaign and is part of the seventh installment of the company’s Courageous Class, which highlights role models for social change.
Mensa, who has worked to give back to the Chicago community through his SaveMoneySaveLife organization, said at the event: “To be included in this Courageous Class and have attention focused on my philanthropic efforts I feel is a vote of confidence and a step in the direction of what’s right. I always appreciate when brands and people in the corporate space show an appreciation or take an interest in the betterment of the community — particularly when it’s my community.”
Cole is also commemorating his milestone with a capsule collection featuring retailored heritage pieces such as the Riley pump from 1983 and a combat boot from 1984.