The dog days in fashion are clearly over as the industry’s fascination with the cat has only intensified over the past few decades. As if anyone still doubted whom the power animal of fashion is! For decades now it has been the fantastically fabulous feline – the cat. One may ask where this fascination with cats in fashion first stemmed from. Cats have regularly been featured in fashion designs and campaigns. For example, luxury jewelry house Cartier has been using a panther as its motif since 1914 and Italian artist Rene Gruau used cats to advertise tights for Christian Dior in the early 1960s. Designer Miuccia Prada periodically incorporated cat motifs in her collections for Miu Miu. Brands ranging from Sandro to Zara and Gucci have all featured cats in their campaigns over the years. In 2000, Mario Testino shoot a particularly endearing campaign for Gucci’s Spring/Summer collection, while Lanvin included two black cats in its Autumn/Winter 2009 advert. However cats have served as more than just pretty faces within the fashion industry. Famous cat lovers in the fashion industry included the late and great Karl Lagerfeld – whose famous cat Choupette has served as the muse for numerous collections and created her own make-up line with Shu Uemura. However, one of the most famed cat lovers in the industry remains the self-proclaimed cat lady and the former US Vogue’s creative director at large, Grace Coddington. Not only has she numerously stated and showed her love for cats in public, but she also released her own illustrated novel based on her cats adventurous, ‘The Catwalk Cats’ in 2006 and more recently her own perfume, whose bottle was inspired by her cats. Dog people or cat people, love them or hate them but know one thing – cats are here to stay.
Story by Jen Ruane.