As we’ve all spent more and more time at home, designer Michael Kors, in creating his spring campaign, found himself thinking of how celebrated editor and fashion icon Diana Vreeland famously proclaimed, “The eye has to travel.”
“Travel is something that has always inspired me,” says Kors, pointing to Vreeland’s insight. “Even now, when we can’t travel, we can escape to faraway destinations on Instagram, we can look at old photos, and we can rediscover the cities and towns in which we live. We all need that change in perspective.”
As someone who sees travel as both inspiration and an escape from reality, the idea of finding new ways to explore the world around us played a key role in his inspiration for the Spring 2021 MICHAEL Michael Kors campaign. The video and stills bring us inside a picture-perfect day in New York City—from a boat ride on the Hudson River to The American Museum of Natural History to the Empire Diner and Central Park—with quintessential jet-setter Bella Hadid. By the end, one question lingers: was it all a dream?
Overall, the campaign encourages both escape through imagination and imagery, as well as the idea of rediscovering the treasures in your own backyard. Today, jet set is more than physical travel, it’s a mindset and a way of life. As Kors says, “For spring, we invite you to change your perspective. There is inspiration everywhere. Let your mind escape and imagine the possibilities.” Read more in the Q&A with Kors below. —Vita Daily
When did you first become inspired by Diana Vreeland? What about her drew you in?
I first discovered who Diana Vreeland was when I was 10 or 11 and I started to read Vogue. I remember seeing these amazing images, in the most exotic places with the most fabulous fashion, and they had me dreaming of Greece, of Japan, of Egypt, and realizing it was all because of her. She taught me, early on, that the combination of fashion and travel was really special. I think true icons are far and few between, and Diana Vreeland is definitely one of them. She lived and breathed fashion, and to her it was so much more than how someone looked—it was about beauty, culture, travel. Diana made fashion into a lifestyle.
What have you done in lieu of travelling that’s kept you inspired?
We’ve found new ways to explore—from revisiting pictures from old trips to watching movies that really put you in a totally different mindset to following some of our favourite travel accounts on Instagram. And, as it becomes safe, rediscovering some of our favourite attractions here at home in NYC.
What about NYC keeps you inspired?
The constant change that is at its core. You can live here for almost three decades and still find something new to do every weekend. There is always something new to see, or an old favourite that you suddenly see in a totally new way.
You and Diana both liked to shoot on location. What makes shooting on location special?
From the visual cues to the culture to the people, shooting on location lays the foundation for a really rich, visual landscape. It gives you a deeper layer of storytelling that infuses everything and takes the clothes and the talent to another place, not just literally, but mentally. When it comes to fashion, the dream and the promise of escape is half the fun.
What were you hoping to achieve with this campaign?
Right now, most of us can’t go to Iceland or off to Patagonia or Italy or Tokyo, but I wanted to remind people that you can still travel in your mind—you can look at fabulous locations on Instagram or discover new people and new cultures through books and movies. You can also find safe ways to travel in your neighbourhood and rediscover the treasures in your own backyard. Because even when we can’t physically jet off to exotic destinations, your mind has to explore and your eye has to travel.