Journey’s Catalog: Keepin’ It Real
Cool design and real-life models keep the Journeys catalog on the cutting-edge of teen fashion
Taking a cue from MTV, the networks are filling their schedules with reality-based TV, especially after the success of “Survivor.” It’s easy. You don’t have to pay actors, write scripts or spend for big-time special effects. Just turn on the cameras.
Viewers seem to have great interest in seeing real people in front of the lens. And one company has taken that ball and run with it into the catalog space.
Officials at Journeys, a retail chain with more than 400 locations, launched their catalog during the 2000 holiday season with a reality-based design format. The catalog markets shoes to youths—from skate-boarders to club kids, preppies to punks.
How can you truly stay on the cutting-edge of teen fashion? It’s simple. You go where young people hang out. If it’s hot, they’re wearing it. Journeys’ photographers capture real teens on location, in restaurants, at the beach, in skate parks and attending the X-Games. The idea: Customers will identify with their peers, not some super-waif fresh off the runway whose closest run-in with a skate-board came when her limo passed the park downtown.
Carliss Million, creative director at Catalogs by Lorél, Journeys’ design agency, describes how they arrived at their format: “We really looked into our demographic, how our market responds to sales pitches. [Buyers] want things that are real, true. They don’t want to be talked down to or sold to. Authenticity is important.”
Imagine you’re 15, chillin’ on the wall with your friends, watchin’ boarders pull off some sick stuff in the half-pipe, and suddenly people with cameras ask if you want to be in a catalog. “It’s because you look fly,” they say. (They’ve also got $50 American Express checks for you and your friends.)