KAO Salon Division Team Up with London College of Fashion

by | Dec 31, 2020

London College of Fashion is one of the 6 colleges which make up University of the Arts London, ranked the second best in the world for Art and Design in 2020.


KAO Salon Division is the home to leading brands including Goldwell, KMS and Kerasilk. The EMEA division collaborated with London College of Fashion‘s Fashion Business School’s students, to create a range of eco-friendly branding materials, promoting their festive ‘Wonderland’ product campaign.


Working collaboratively, students from LCF’s Fashion Business School were tasked with bringing to life KAO’s Wonderland narrative through innovative design and merchandising using only delivery boxes which, repurposed, create a story that would then be used by KAO Salon partner staff when recreating their own window displays.


In line with LCF’s commitment to driving change, and to build a sustainable future, the project also marks KAO’s plan to ensure that by 2030 the business is fully sustainable and playing a pivotal role in fighting and reducing the global impact of climate change.


“It was truly magical collaborating with KAO on this initiative, especially since we share the same corporate sustainability philosophy. KAO tasked our students to transform salons across EMEA into festive wonderlands, all while delivering upcycling and creativity, which is exactly the kind of project we’re proud to be a part of.” – Liz Gee, Interim Dean of the Fashion Business School


The brief was sent out to Fashion Business School students earlier this year, who then took to their collective thinking to produce a set of moodboards for the judges, as well as a series of pitches to both KAO and LCF staff, in response to the set brief.


The main criteria for the project brief included: engaging naturally creative and competitive salon staff, explore appropriate Market Intelligence, Communication Assets, New Retail Concepts and Design Thinking, be appropriate for any number of salon house styles and sizes and to incorporate a considered and innovative communications strategy for KAO Salons, staff and consumers to engage with.


Transforming KAO salons just in time for Christmas, the winning students’ work can now be seen displayed in salons across Europe, spreading festive cheer with a sustainable twist. The winning groups joined forces remotely to create their projects from across the World; from BA Fashion Marketing, and now British Beauty Council team member, Ruth Slater, and from MA Strategic Fashion Marketing Jolie Emmen, Diana Xu Chen, and Naintara Singh.


“Creativity, like energy, never dies. It just finds a new home, a new spark, the next place it can inspire people and make positive change happen. You have truly inspired and catalysed our Christmas Wonderland today. Thank you and now enjoy basking in your achievements.  We are proud to have worked with you on your journey. ” – Helen Coupe, Director Commercial Marketing, Salon, EMEA   KAO Salon Division


KAO Salon Division x London College of Fashion


LCF spoke with the winning creators about the Wonderland project:


What attracted you to taking part in this project?  


Ruth: Throughout my final year at LCF I decided that I would take all the opportunities presented to me, I didn’t want to finish my time as an undergrad with any ‘what if’ questions. On top of this, I have been interested in the hair and beauty industry for some time, so being able to work on a live project with such a respectable brand was an unmissable opportunity, no matter the outcome.


What do you feel you got out of this industry project?  


Diana: This project enabled me to work efficiently within a time deadline, it improved my time-management. Also, I got to boost my creativity and technical design skills on Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop.


Ruth: This KAO Salon Division collaboration provided me with the opportunity to create and present a response to a live industry brief. It has shown me the importance of challenging myself and provided me with a renewed sense of confidence in my abilities. I am beyond grateful to have taken part, the project has helped me to grow personally and professionally, and I can’t thank all those involved enough.

How did you find it working in groups remotely, do you feel it helped or hindered the project? 


Diana: Due to the Covid-19, we were unable to meet for this project, but this didn’t affect our end result. We communicated effectively through WhatsApp, and made sure everyone in the group was on top of everything.

If you are one of the KAO Salons who have participated in Wonderland, make sure you share your pictures of your displays using the #CreateWonderland on Instagram – we would love to see all of your festive creativity!

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