Design & Style, Business

Building Your Brand DNA

Diane von Furstenberg

Lesson time 10:36 min

From logos and names to building your brand portfolio, Diane breaks down how to craft your brand DNA.

Students give MasterClass an average rating of 4.7 out of 5 stars

Topics include: Building a Brand Portfolio • Naming Your Brand • Logos


When I was young, I mean, first of all, DNA had not been invented or at least it was not a word that we used. So clearly, we had no idea about building a DNA. Today, everything is about building a DNA. So what does it mean? It means building a personality. It means that your product is recognized because it has such a strong personality. I mean, a DVF wrap dress is recognizable by most people, even men or people who don't understand fashion. And that's what I think is important, is that your personality or the personality of the product comes out, and that is what you call a brand DNA. Stand for something and stick to it, even if you are bored with it. Stick to it, find babies, have them make babies, derivatives change it, but always stick to your DNA. It is important to create a brand portfolio, because it forces you to put all the things you need to. First of all, it shows your sense of graphism, the way you present it, so you understand you understand a lot from that, from the the presentation of a portfolio. You should have clearly a mission statement-- why am I doing this, what do I have to offer-- then you need a major focus on the product. Beautifully shot, if you have had any exposure in the press, it's nice also to see the product in the context of consumers and things like that. And then you should say what is your plan about what is your business plan. What is the distribution and how are you going about it, and what is your marketing strategy. That's what should be in a portfolio. The name of a brand sometimes is the starting point. People have a odd-- especially if it's like an odd name or something, and I mean, for example, I would think polo, right? I mean, for Ralph Lauren, polo was a symbol to be athletic, and glamorous, and upscale, and all of that. So he had a brand called polo. And he had a little polo on the shirt. So in my case, I didn't even think of it, and so it was my name, and it was just my signature. And then it stuck with me. And of course because it's a long name, and nobody can pronounce it, the initials and now the initials DVF, because when you deal with markets like China, they cannot pronounce it. So most designers use their own name and it seems like the normal thing to do. I've had many friends who have lost their names because they sold the company. So it's very important that if you trademark your name, you make sure that you own the trademark. And if you sell your company, well, it's nice if you can keep, somehow, the trademark separate from the company. So we talked about the name, and then logo, it's nice. Logos are nice especially when they are designed on their own, because then they're not too much in your face. But again, nice logo have to happen-- how can I say-- they have to happen organically. So logos, name, colors, very important. And then there's a mood that colors...

About the Instructor

In her 20s, Diane Von Furstenberg convinced a textile factory owner in Italy to let her produce her first designs. With those samples, she flew to New York City to build one of the world’s most iconic and enduring fashion brands. In her first online fashion design class, Diane teaches you how to build a brand. You’ll learn how to create a visual identity, build loyalty, stay true to your vision, and launch your product.

Featured Masterclass Instructor

Diane von Furstenberg

In 17 video lessons, Diane von Furstenberg will teach you how to build and market your fashion brand.

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