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17 : 05 : 23

Martha Stewart graces the cover of Sports Illustrated at 81, LS:N Global at the Walpole British Luxury Summit and the power of logos on Gen Z and Millennials.

Martha Stewart models for cover of Sports Illustrated’s swimsuit issue

Sports Illustrated, US

US – Television personality and entrepreneur Martha Stewart has become American magazine Sports Illustrated’s oldest cover model, posing for its annual swimsuit edition at the age of 81.

She surpasses fashion model Maye Musk, who was aged 74 when she appeared on the magazine’s cover in 2022.

Stewart began modelling aged 15 and also worked as a Wall Street stockbroker. She later started a catering business, which grew into a lifestyle media company.

Stewart is one of four women gracing the cover of the magazine’s swimsuit issue, which this year aims to celebrate powerful women who ‘live in a world where they feel no limitations, internally or externally’. The magazine’s other covers feature actor Megan Fox, model Brooks Nader and musician Kim Petras.

On the confidence it took to pose for the publication, Stewart told The New York Times: 'When the offer came, I thought, ‘I can do this. I don’t have to give in to convention’.’

Sports Illustrated is following a trend we highlighted in our She Is Mother report, which explores how talented women over 60 – especially in the entertainment industry – are being seen and celebrated by consumers of all ages.

Strategic opportunity

Trends and popular culture are no longer being defined by one young demographic. Collaborate with influential women over 60 as they represent an authenticity and inspiration that all consumers seek

Recap: Walpole British Luxury Summit 2023

Walpole British Luxury Summit 2023, UK Walpole British Luxury Summit 2023, UK
Walpole British Luxury Summit 2023, UK Walpole British Luxury Summit 2023, UK

UK – Held on 15 May at The Londoner hotel, the annual Walpole Luxury Summit was an open call for the sector to adopt bolder strategies in order to survive, thrive and redefine the luxury landscape of tomorrow.

Walpole CEO Helen Brocklebank opened the day with an uplifting message, reminding attendees that the first European company to reach a £400bn ($500bn, €460bn) valuation was not a tech or finance firm, but luxury conglomerate LVMH. Walpole also introduced its State of London Luxury report, a white paper outlining London’s status as a global luxury capital and advocating for the reinstatement of tax-free shopping for international visitors.

The ever-important cultural and social role of luxury was also highlighted throughout the day, including how the sector is championing ESG and good business practice, taking the lead to democratise net-zero practices or using tech capabilities to supercharge customer experience. Panellists paid tribute to the many ways that the luxury industry can nurture and inspire excellence for a future ‘where doing business well by doing good should be your mantra’, according to Brocklebank.

Strategic opportunity

Look out for a detailed report on what happened at the summit and what that means for your business, coming soon to LS:N Global's dedicated Luxury sector analysis

Visit California launches Indigenous-focused tourism database

US – Announced in autumn 2022 and opened in March 2023, Visit Native California is a new online portal showcasing over 500 tourist activities celebrating Native American heritage in the West Coast state.

First imagined by Kate Anderson, the director of public relations at the Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians and a member of the Potawatomi Nation, the portal stalled for two years due to lack of funding until it received a federal grant – awarded as part of the American Rescue Plan Act to help the communities hardest hit by the Covid pandemic.

As part of the non-profit organisation Visit California, this new resource lists destinations ranging from San Diego archaeological sites to the Tongva Park in Santa Monica and the Stewart Mineral Springs, known for their sacred mineral waters. The initiative aims to empower Native Americans and digitise Indigenous Californian landmarks and customs without exploiting them for profit.

In LATAM Afrocentric Itineraries, we highlighted similar innovations in the tourism market in Latin America with a new wave of Afro-Latino travel innovators focusing on Black narratives without falling into the trap of cultural appropriation or Western entitlement.

Photography by Martina Martinez

Strategic opportunity

Brands that help elevate marginalised narratives are the ones which will gain the most cultural traction –but only if it is a truly altruistic endeavour. US-based businesses in particular should take note of those initiatives raising the profile of Indigenous culture without appropriation or entitlement.

Stat: Gen Z and Millennials remain influenced by logos

Entrée. Identity by Saint-Urbain, US Entrée. Identity by Saint-Urbain, US

US – A new survey of 2,201 US adults by Morning Consult shows that logos remain an influencing factor in purchasing decisions, especially among younger consumers. A majority of Gen Z adults (56%) and Millennials (52%) say they have bought a product because it had an interesting logo, compared to only 34% of all adults.

Out of all generations, Baby Boomers were least likely to say they had bought an item because of its logo, while 38% of Gen Xers reported making a purchase because of limited-edition packaging. Interestingly, the research also found that men were more likely than women to say they have made a logo-related purchase. Among high-income earners – those with an annual household income of £79,800 ($100,000, €91,820) or more – 46% said they had bought something due to an interesting logo, while 43% said the same about a product featuring a new logo or packaging.

The study also revealed that 55% of respondents favour simple logos compared to 13% who said they liked busy ones, at a time when many large brands have unveiled changes to their visual identities, including Pepsi Co, Fanta and Nokia. Aesthetic choices resonate strongly with consumers – a theme we will explore in our upcoming design direction on future-forward colours.

Strategic opportunity

As brands look to redesign their logos, they should also explore future-thinking opportunities with Web3, non-fungible tokens and creative collaborations

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