Not For Hire was actually the title of a resort-wear clothing line that I designed while in college and the title has stuck with me. I am now turning Not For Hire into a critiquing blog for fashion advertisements and products. I have serious issues with name brand companies putting out horrible ads/products that get great reviews just because they are popular brands or they use famous models & celebrities. I'm here to write real reviews on advertisements/products even if the truth hurts. Most of what I write will obviously be negative feedback but there are some companies that deserve serious credit and will get it from me. Hope you enjoy the critiquing and you are more than welcome to critique my critiques; I love a good debate!

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Harley Davidson: Classic American Beauty

Harley Davidson is not prominent in the fashion world but should at least receive an honorable mention.  They have revolutionized the world of leather and protective clothing (and of course bi/tri wheel engineering) while creating a sophisticated, sexy and powerful image to go alongside the ‘bearded, fat biker’ clich√©.  I have seen them mold, sculpt and sew leather in ways that my sewing machine would break a needle just thinking about.  Not only do the designers of HD think about making fashionable products but they take into account the fact that people will be wearing this while they are riding a Harley.  Much of their clothing is meant for ‘weather and wipeout’ as I like to call it, meaning they may get caught in any sort of  weather and they may (God forbid) crash.  What may seem like a nice night for you may call for leather gloves and a jacket to a rider.  Riding gear also has the ‘snow shoveling’ effect where your layers keep cold winds out but keeps hot body temps in which leads designers to design with breathable air vents.  I once put on a HD jacket that had removable pads inside the layers of fabric with hidden zippers for access and adjustability.  There was a zipper in every fold and seam with pieces that attached and detached depending on what function you needed it for.  Not only was the jacket impeccably constructed but it was also beautifully embellished with eccentric stitching. 

Not only are HD’s clothing fashionable, their advertisements are as well.  They have had several advertisement campaigns with Victoria Secret’s model Marisa Miller which markets their brand as very sexy with a sense of strong feminine independence.  

HD also used Marisa Miller in a Veteran’s Day campaign that was used to promote sending letters to deployed soldiers and designate November as ‘Military Appreciation Month’.  It was inspired by vintage ‘blond bombshell’ pin-up girls with motorcycles that match.

HD also has a Pink Label collection that a portion of the proceeds goes to Breast Cancer Network of Strength and they have a Muscular Dystrophy Association that has raised more than $65 million in research aid.


Harley Davidson’s vision is, ‘We fuel the passion for freedom in our customers to express their own individuality’ which they do by emphasizing the non-traditional pairing of sophisticated style with brute strength.

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