world of men's style / fashion / grooming

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All the Colors


In the midst of rebranding, The Gap has launched The Sound of Color to help the kids really get to know those colors. Apparently red sounds like electro-pop and green sounds like Swizz Beats, who, fittingly enough, sounds like money.

It can’t help but seem familiar, but this ad (or microsite, if you prefer) takes a different tack than the old Salvation Army color scheme. Instead of trying to help the Gap’s brand—although they’re doing a little of that too—they’re trying to brand the colors. (“Hey, this sweatshirt’s green! I’ve heard about green!”)

It’s an interesting idea, but it’s wrong for a couple reasons. One problem is that the colors are boring and vague—how can you get excited about red?—but the bigger problem is that the site misunderstands how color really works in fashion. When insiders discuss color—here, for instance—it’s in terms of boldness and brightness and in the context of a larger style. Thinking in terms of the color wheel has more to do with graphic design than style, and as a result the spot feels empty. It has some great videos and some good music, but absolutely nothing to say about style.