It appears that featuring Monica Cruz in the A/W 2012 campaign Wilhelmina: Show Your True Self was just a prelude of what to expect from Agent Provocateur. The luxury lingerie brand announced yesterday the release of its new wholesale collection, L’Agent. Expected to debut in August 2013, the collection of 15 styles (with 7-8 pieces per style) will be designed by 35-year old actress/dancer Monica and her older sister Penelope Cruz.
The Cruz sisters aren’t strangers to designing collections; back in 2008 they created a clothing line in a successful collaboration with Mango. It appears they are enthusiastic about the new venture, and have even been hands-on in designing the interior labels and the hangers. Perhaps the most interesting part of this collaboration, however, is that it doesn’t fit the typical profile for celebrity lines. Whereas most fashion labels will collaborate with non-designer celebrities for limited-edition collections, Agent Provocateur has entered into a minimum 5-year partnership with the Monica and Penelope.
This is an interesting choice on the part of the lingerie label, which has been in business since 1994. Known for it’s truly naughty yet decadent pieces, Agent Provocateur carries a high price point. Its stores are a go-to for women with exquisite bodies and immaculate taste, and some of its pieces make Victoria’s Secret look like granny panties in comparison. So will a celebrity line designed by sisters who aren’t actually designers appeal to the company’s demographic? When many of Agent Provocateur’s clientele arguably prefer the brand for its exclusivity and luxury appeal, such a collection could be perceived as too mainstream or gimmicky. On the other hand, the brand ultimately lacks lingerie that could be comfortably worn for everyday use.
If it is, in fact, Agent Provocateur’s goal to offer more practical lingerie options through L’Agent, it could definitely be considered wise from a business perspective. But also disappointing, since until now the lingerie has been appealing mostly because its so…special. With a Gap on every corner and PINK slapped on every pair of sweats, we so rarely get to be "turned-on” anymore. After all, it’s being able to walk into an über-sexy boutique, admire delicate creations of silk and lace, and imagine how she’ll look when she puts on a pair of panties she probably can’t afford that gives a girl butterflies in her stomach.