Victoria Beckham will return to the skintight dresses in which she launched her career in fashion in an effort to recover from lost sales during the pandemic.
The “VB Body” dresses, in a tightly knit compact designed to shape the body and accentuate curves, will be launched in April, marking a move away from the soft silhouettes that have become the signature of her loss-making high fashion brand.
In a preview at his London studio, Beckham said the change was influenced by spending time in Florida, where her husband, David Beckham, owns a stake in the Inter Miami football team.
“As I got into fashion, the more layers of clothing I wore. I buried myself under my clothes. But in Miami, if you go out in the evening in a midi skirt and a bow blouse, people think you’ve lost your mind. It’s a regular dress for me in London and I still like to wear it. But Miami opened my eyes to the fact that the feminine and curvy look is so important to so many women. “
Beckham’s luxury brand lost £ 8.6 million in 2020. The results were an improvement on losses of £ 16.8 million in 2019, due to a high-performance beauty line, but the brand has yet to make a profit. Last year, the label’s average prices were slashed by 40% by moving towards casual wear and simpler fabrics in an effort to broaden the customer base.
Price tags for the VB Body range will start at £ 90. “This is not a vanity project and commercial is not a dirty word,” said Beckham, who praised chief executive, Marie Leblanc, “for bringing the ‘company in the best shape it has ever been in “.
Turnout at the brand’s Mayfair flagship remains well below pre-pandemic levels, even as the store’s virtual appointments via FaceTime with customers in their homes are driving sales.
“We dress women to go out, to work, to travel – all things that have been limited in the last couple of years, so business has been a real challenge,” Beckham said. “I think it’s time to get back to normal, start dressing appropriately and go back to the office, if I’m being honest. It’s nice to see my office full again. “
Financial restraint looks set to rule out a show during London Fashion Week. “The shows are really expensive and if we were to have one in February we should commit now. This is a huge investment for a small independent brand, ”Beckham said.
A scheduled show was canceled due to the lockdown in 2020 resulting in a significant loss to the company. The designer joins a growing list of cancellations that downsize the upcoming runway season, with Giorgio Armani, Ann Demeulemeester, Brunello Cucinelli and JW Anderson all postponing live events or switching to a digital format.
Beckham’s high fashion “pre-fall” collection, which goes on sale in April, carries her mantra of “bringing the sexy back” to her signature demure silhouette. The curved seams have been optimized on long skirts and dresses “to make the most of a nice butt and a good life, to celebrate being a woman. I no longer want to dress for comfort or hide under loose clothing “.
The collection’s bright citrus hues were inspired by the pistachio seating and marmalade walls of the Sant Ambroeus restaurant in Palm Beach, Florida. “We were having dinner and I had David [Beckham] take a picture of me so I can send it to the atelier, ”said the designer. “A tacky wink makes the collection fresher.”