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Willow Smith for Chanel eyewearFrench atelier Chanel is beginning its story with Willow Smith by featuring the youthful ambassadress in an eyewear effort for fall/winter 2016-17.

At the time of her appointment in March, Chanel did not announce which category 16-year-old Ms. Smith would be representing. Selecting eyewear, an entry-level category, as Ms. Smith’s first campaign and official entrance into the world of Chanel will likely assist the brand in appealing to the singer/actress’ millennial and Gen Z demographic as this age segment matures.

Willow in shades
A sneak peak of Ms. Smith’s Chanel eyewear fall/winter 2016-17 effort was shared by the house across its social channels in June, but details were not disclosed until late August.

In the June announcement Ms. Smith was seen, dressed in leather and tulle, with a Chanel ribbon tied in her hair. The model lounged across a white block and wore rounded, large-framed Chanel sunglasses.

Willow Smith for Chanel eyewear, fall/winter 2016-17

To formally introduce the effort in full, Chanel shared another image of Ms. Smith in retro style glasses with ombre lenses, a number of necklaces and a black off-the-shoulder top. A link for additional information directs consumers to Chanel’s Web site.

The landing page offers consumers a behind-the-scenes video that shows Ms. Smith playing around in a photo booth and using the photos to construct a scrapbook of her experience during the campaign. Ms. Smith’s scrapbooking is then translated throughout the landing page with handwritten notes and snapshots of the ambassadress.

Willow Smith's Chanel eyewear scrapbook

Different areas of exploration are available for consumers to pursue. In one section, the consumer can browse a gallery of Chanel eyewear fall/winter 2016 campaign images.

The five black-and-white images were photographed by Chanel creative director Karl Lagerfeld and feature Ms. Smith in both casual and adventurous styles.

For example, in one image, Ms. Smith wears a leather belt with hands making peace signs as a choker necklace. In another Ms. Smith uses a simple piece of Chanel ribbon, used in its packaging, as a bowtie.

Videos labeled Sunglasses Collection and Optical Collection show off Ms. Smith’s playful personality. Click-throughs on large eyewear images redirect the consumer to Chanel’s ecommerce site for purchase.

In the final section, Chanel included a behind-the-scenes photo gallery of Ms. Smith. Images show Ms. Smith as she is styled and as she poses for her photo shoot with Mr. Lagerfeld.

The eyewear campaign is signed “Willow XXX” at the bottom.

Chanel’s content for its eyewear fall/winter 2016-17 campaign was also shared on Instagram where the films seen on the Web site have been repurposed.

Youth services
Ms. Smith, the daughter of actors Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith, is part of a growing cast of young Hollywood stars cast by Chanel (see story).

Lily Rose Depp, actor Johnny Depp and Chanel muse Vanessa Paradis’ daughter, for example, began with Chanel as the face of its Pearl eyewear collection. As the actress’ relationship with Chanel has blossomed, Ms. Depp was also cast as the face of Chanel N°5 L’Eau, a soon-to-be-released scent.



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