Louis Vuitton steps up accessories revamp with new designer

PARIS, Sept 24 Tue Sep 24, 2013 12:04pm EDT

PARIS, Sept 24 (Reuters) - Louis Vuitton has hired Proenza Schouler accessories designer Darren Spaziani as part of the luxury brand's efforts to reposition itself as more exclusive and upmarket.

Louis Vuitton, the world's biggest luxury brand and part of French group LVMH, has been trying to become more elitist after suffering a dip in demand for the 600-700 euros ($810-$940) logo-embossed canvas bags on which it built its profitability.

Earlier this month, a survey of store managers showed its new and pricer bags, such as the 3,500-euro Capucines, were flying off the shelves at European fashion capitals, signalling that the strategy was starting to bear fruit.

Louis Vuitton said Spaziani would create new collections made with "leather of the highest quality".

Delphine Arnault, daughter of LVMH Chief Executive Bernard Arnault and recently appointed No.2 at Louis Vuitton, on Tuesday described Spaziani as "one of the most talented designers of his generation".

"He knows the maison well and will bring modern vision and professionalism to Louis Vuitton's creations," Arnault added in a statement.

Spaziani, 38, who graduated from the elite fashion school London's Central Saint Martins and London College of Fashion, worked for Louis Vuitton from 2004 to 2006.

As well as Proenza Schouler, he has previously worked as accessories design director at Balenciaga, part of Kering , in Paris and did consulting work for Diane von Furstenberg and Tory Burch in New York. ($1 = 0.7412 euros) (Reporting by Astrid Wendlandt; Editing by Pravin Char)

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