Sofia Richie’s Wedding Gowns Lead to a 300% Surge in Online Searches for Chanel

In May 2022, luxury fashion label Chanel launched stores purely dedicated to top-paying clients. This move has since been made popular as even other luxury labels, who are known to target Gen Z and millennials. But beyond launching private stores, the fashion house has also increased its prices across all items, the Chanel flap bag being one of them.   

See also: Gucci’s New Melrose Place Store Doubles Down on Exclusivity 

Philippe Blondiaux, Chanel’s chief financial officer, has said, “We usually revise our prices twice a year. That’s what we’ve always done and will continue to do.” 

The purpose of this technique is to create exclusivity by restricting consumer access to the product. Those who have the financial means to acquire a Chanel item are making a luxurious choice. 

As prices keep increasing, it has raised doubts about the true value of the items, particularly since certain products have been observed to be priced similarly to some of the most coveted Hermès pieces sold directly in their stores, not in the secondary or third-party markets. 

And this has been a conversation that has lingered for quite some time. Up until recently, at least.  

A fresh story has emerged surrounding Chanel, which centers around Sofia Richie and her now husband Elliot Grainge and what has been dubbed by some as the “Gen Z’s royal wedding.” It also involves the tribute The Met paid to the fashion house during its 2023 gala. 

The Sofia Richie Effect

The wedding of Richie and Grainge was a grand affair that celebrated their love and piqued interest in Richie’s fashion selections.  

The daughter of the singer Lionel Richie, a model and fashion icon in her own regard, she caught the eyes of millions by wearing not one but three Chanel wedding gowns on her special day.  

But it wasn’t just the pieces she wore that drew attention, it was her actions also drew widespread attention, which resulted in a viral moment that gave the French luxury brand a boost in relevancy that they’ve long desired. Following the wedding, there was a surge in online searches for the fashion house. 

Online fashion platform Lyst, which monitors the latest fashion trends, reported a 300% surge in searches for “Chanel” after the wedding. There was interest in specific items, such as the “maxi dresses” and “Chanel Slingbacks,” which witnessed a 40% increase in online searches. 

Sofia Richie’s Secret Formula

Although Richie’s social media approach may not be groundbreaking, it is a welcome change in the world of celebrity. In the days leading up to her wedding, Richie made her debut on TikTok by posting a “get ready with me” (GRWM) video while in France. Following her GRWM video, Richie continued to create more videos of this nature on TikTok and shared glimpses of her wedding preparations. Additionally, Vogue released footage of Richie working with designers on each of her wedding pieces, further amplifying the attention around her big day. 

By showcasing her big day in real-time footage, the wedding offered fans an exclusive glimpse into Richie’s special moment, which played a part in Chanel’s viral triumph. Unlike most celebrities who prefer to keep their lives under wraps and post about them later, Richie’s approach was dubbed quite refreshing.  

Some even called it their “wedding Super Bowl. 

The 2023 Met Gala

While Richie did not attend this year’s Met Gala event, as it occurred during her honeymoon, the event and exhibit did pay tribute Karl Lagerfeld, who led fashion houses including Chanel, Fendi, and his eponymous label. 

In line with the event’s theme “in honor of Karl,” this year’s A-list guests showcased bespoke outfits paying tribute to Lagerfeld’s design elements, such as his Chanel tweeds and his signature black-and-white uniform. 

Although Chanel did not have a direct impact on the theme of the event, the fashion house could still potentially gain from it like it did with Richie’s wedding. The only distinction is that several celebrities avoid reposting their Met Gala looks due to the risk of being sued by photographers.

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