Iconic Balenciaga gowns transform the windows of the May Fair Hotel

Balenciaga Window Graphics at the May Fair Hotel. London

Known as ‘The Master’ of haute couture, Cristóbal Balenciaga was one of the most innovative and influential fashion designers of the last century. His exquisite craftsmanship and pioneering use of fabrics revolutionised the female silhouette, setting the tone for modern fashion.

To reflect the impact of the creative genius behind the brand, the V&A Museum worked with their partners to hold a Balenciaga: Shaping Fashion exhibition running from May 2017 to February 2018. The event is the first UK exhibition to explore the work and legacy of the Spanish couturier, showcasing over 100 garments and hats crafted by Balenciaga, his protégés and contemporary designers working in the same innovative way today. It examines Balenciaga’s work from the 1950s and 1960s when he dressed some of the most renowned women of the age and became revered by his contemporaries, including Christian Dior and Coco Chanel.

Rose Design, was charged with developing a marketing campaign to promote the exhibition at the V&A, and worked with WithPrint, Somerset, to offer various ideas including covering the windows of the prestigious May Fair Hotel, London. It was important that the experience of the guests in the hotel were not disrupted and that their views into the street were not drastically affected by the graphics. The hotel was also keen to keep the exterior windows clean and avoid covering the whole panes of glass. Contra Vision® Campaign 40% perforated window film was chosen as the best product to satisfy these requirements. From the inventors of see-through window graphics, the innovative one-way vision characteristics of Contra Vision® enable detailed images to be applied to any clear glass surface without negatively impacting the internal environment.

Internal view through the graphics

Talking about the application in more detail, Alan Smith of WithPrint commented, “The design features intricate dresses that were produced on our large format UV printer. They were then shape-cut and carefully packed. As Contra Vision® is applied dry to the windows, it helped us move quickly and install the graphics with minimal disruption to the hotel, their staff and of course most importantly the guests.”

On completion the hotel staff commented that the graphics ‘Looked amazing” and “it was almost as if the dresses were on display in real life.” They also had several guests admiring the graphics and asking about the exhibition during the install process.

It is fair to say that the combined creative talents and attention to detail of Rose Design and WithPrint perfectly encapsulates the creativity and genius of Cristóbal Balenciaga in a show-stopping application, illustrating beautifully how transformative qualities of Contra Vision® window graphics can be.

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