||Pierce Brosnan Shows
He's This Generation's
One and Only Bond In New
Fashion Ad Campaign
Sense and sensuality as time goes by
A classic British label's autumn/winter campaign effortlessly captures the style of
bygone Hollywood glamour, says Hilary Alexander
It is the classic movie seduction scene: the dimly-lit library, her half-finished glass of
wine, his tumbler of single malt; their eyes locking over a game of chess. But this is
no reprise of The Thomas Crown Affair, although the hero is undoubtedly a
Instead, this is Pierce Brosnan as arch-seducer - a part he perfected in five James
Bond blockbusters - in a campaign for British heritage label Aquascutum.
This is the first major British modelling role for the former 007, and recruiting him as
the "face" of the autumn/winter collection was the brainchild of Aquascutum's new
president and chief executive officer, Kim Winser, who was inspired by the pictures
of bygone Hollywood stars that decorate the VIP room at the company's Regent
Humphrey Bogart, Trevor Howard, Gregory Peck, Sean Connery, Peter Sellers and
Sophia Loren, along with royals such as King Edward VII, the Duke of Windsor and
the Queen Mother, once conveyed the mystique and prestige of the Aquascutum
brand to the masses.
Now, Winser hopes that Brosnan and 21-year-old German model and Vogue cover
girl Julia Stegner - who appears in a classic trench, a pair of lace-top stockings,
high heels and little else - will perform the same magic for a new generation.
A Bond fan of many years' standing, Winser knew that melding the iconic status of
Brosnan with Aquascutum would be a winning combination. And she is equally
proud of the smouldering sensuality that photographer Mario Sorrenti brought to
the campaign, using historic Somerset House on The Strand as a backdrop, a
setting that evokes high intrigue and high style.
Winser happily concedes the photographs are ''very sexy'', light years away from
the cosy, Home Counties perception of the brand which an older generation of
"I wanted to launch a campaign that would capture the interest of our customers,
loyal and new," she says. "Pierce was a perfect choice and I have to say he looks
stunning. Julie is both elegant and glamorous. They are the perfect 'power couple'."
Brosnan and Stegner wear clothes by Aquascutum's creative duo Michael Herz and
Graeme Fiddler, who have been given carte blanche by Winser to spearhead a style
revolution at a company that dates back to 1851.
Although Herz's background is women's wear and Fiddler's is men's, they work as
a team, collaborating on each collection to ensure the designs reflect Aquascutum's
heritage as what it sees as its future.
They are based in a design studio in Shoreditch, with a team of seamstresses who
produce prototypes for each design. The day we meet, the studio is dotted with
books and photographs of wooden African sculptures and neck ornaments, one of
the starting points for next summer's collection, to be shown at London Fashion
Week in September. Herz and Fiddler also spend hours plundering Aquascutum's
Wherever possible, the duo use British mills to produce their fabrics and the
majority of the tailoring is also done here, while the women's dresses are
manufactured in Italy.
"There is a really strong tradition of fabric innovation, starting with the company's
launch of a rain-repellent wool, shown at the Great Exhibition in 1853," says Herz.
"We want to uphold that tradition. For example, the dress Julia wears in the chess
scene is made from a wool barathea, traditionally used for men's dinner suits, and
updated with a cotton canvas trim, while the trenchcoat is based on a photograph
of a Twenties driving suit.
''We also found a yellow wool bouclé suit from the Fifties and went back to the
original mill, Linton Tweeds, which does all the tweeds for Chanel, to have it
re-woven for coats. Much of the metal embroidery for coats and dresses was done
by specialists, Toye, Kenning & Spencer, inspired by heraldic motifs."
Fiddler explains that the grey wool suit worn by Brosnan was influenced by the
Aquascutum suits worn by stars such as Michael Caine and Richard Harris in the
Sixties. He has also collaborated with the Savile Row tailor Nick Hart for a limited
edition range of suits.
"The raincoat Pierce is wearing in the shot with the dalmatian features a
pared-down version of the raglan sleeve, which Aquascutum was commissioned to
design in the late 19th century for a coat for Lord Raglan that would accommodate
"The more we go through the archives, the more we are amazed at the incredible
detail, craftsmanship and techniques they used, particularly from the Thirties and
Forties. It is a constant source of inspiration," Fiddler adds.
Herz and Fiddler's designs have already inspired a number of celebrities, too. They
are quietly proud of having fitted Madonna for a coat and mention that Angelina
Jolie and Kylie Minogue are also owners of Aquascutum raincoats.
When Winser took the helm at Aquascutum, her ambition was that people would
walk into the store and say "Wow". With this campaign, the "wow" factor has surely
(Editor's Note: Following are the images of Brosnan and model Julia Stegner from
the Aquascutum ad campaign.)