Few designers could have gotten away with the kind of left-field lunacy that Jean Paul Gaultier brings to his new gig as the celebrity ‘creative director’ for Diet Coke‘s latest European promo campaign.
In addition to dressing up Coke bottles in lingerie, the impish Gaultier turned the assignment into a full-blown vaudeville act — complete with a gender-bending photoshoot and a series of short films featuring Gaultier as a “serial designer” stalking cute young puppets. (This is probably the first genre mash-up to combine slasher films and fashion makeovers, with Gaultier asking at the end of each film, “So, are you going to press charges?”)
But the centerpiece of the campaign are Gaultier’s three bottle designs, one featuring his signature sailor-boy nautical stripe and two inspired new designs featuring bottles dressed in corseted bodysuits (no doubt inspired by his iconic creations for Madonna way back when).
Gaultier, who is EVERYwhere in the promotional tie-ins for Diet Coke in Europe these days, brings his customary élan to the assignment (which was announced during Paris Fashion Week!). You’ll remember a few years ago he launched his Classique perfume line renowned for bottles shaped like a woman’s torso and outfitted in a corset (below). Then, too, he took that concept to almost ridiculous extremes, creating a variety of costumed bottles that became highly coveted collector’s items.
His Diet Coke (or Coke Light in Europe) campaign might be the strangest thing anyone has ever done to sell soft drinks — and certainly much more entertaining than Karl Lagerfeld‘s designer bottles from a couple of years ago — but it’ll almost certainly be a smash hit when the bottles reach stores next week.
Only downside? These goodies will only be distributed in Europe, so if you live on this side of the pond, be prepared to add this item to your E-Bay watch list.
Here’s a look at the first three episodes in Gaultier’s ‘Serial Designer’ film series. Check back with the Diet Coke Facebook page for more installments.