A fragrance opera
An innovative new ad campaign for Calvin Klein's cK one fragrance has Internet addresses for the three characters depicted in print, radio and TV ads.
The only catch is, they are make-believe.
When consumers send e-mail to these nonentities, the characters will respond with vivid details about their imaginary lives. There's Anna, a 13-year-old schoolgirl; Tia, a TV advertising producer in her 20s; and Robert, a married 30-something director of TV commercials.
Consumers who've written to tikone.com, roberkone.com, and annkone.com have learned a lot about the three. (At the moment, Robert thinks he might be in love with Tia, whom he met in London while shooting a dog food commercial.) The characters' e-mail arrives sporadically, just as real e-mail does.
HTC Once a consumer sends an initial message, the characters will keep writing back regardless of whether the consumer responds. To stop the chatter from the Klein characters, consumers just have to send the message "get lost."
Nailing down the basics
Whether you love to show off your nails or prefer to keep them to yourself, there's something for you in "Style on Hand: Perfect Nail and Skin Care" by Elisa Ferri and Lisa Kenny ($25, Universe).
The guide draws on the expertise of its authors. Ferri is a manicurist with an elite clientele, including Stephanie Seymour, who writes a preface reminding you, "No matter how pretty your hair is or how beautiful you look in that perfect little black dress, you cannot get around the fact that if your nails aren't done, you're not done."
Kenny is a hand model who has appeared in more than 200 commercials.
This book is full of basic information, including how to do home manicures and hand massages, as well as some fun suggestions for working with various colors.
Farewell, Indian Jones - hello, '90s
Banana Republic, which started the retail theme business by picking up on safari fever in the early '80s, has undergone a makeover.
It's become cosmopolitan in the last year and a half. It caters not to travelers and bohemians, but to young professionals who like their clothes with just a dash of trendiness. The kind of people who want style at a fair price, say $75 for a ribbed sweater with a trendy patch pocket vs. $500 or more for a designer version.
The only traces of the Indiana Jones theme at Banana Republic are T-shirts emblazoned with maps of the world, a photographer's vest and a few other so-called heritage pieces.
"We needed to change with our customer," says corporate spokeswoman Cindy Capobianco.
Other marketing ventures include a new catalog, a credit card, a home collection and the company's first-ever television commercials.
Sweetly scented slumber
Nver mind spraying yourself. The latest way to smell good - as well as heal your mind and body - is to spritz your pillow.
Two of the newest slumber enhancers are Origins' Sleep Perchance to Dream pillow mist and Coty's Breathe Deeply Pillow and Room Spray.
The Origins version, with its mix of vanilla, cinnamon and chamomile, aims to ease insomnia. But the distinctly citrusy scent may leave you dreaming of orange groves ($20 for 3.4 fluid ounces at select department stores).
Coty's spray, which is part of its Cold Comfortheraphy line, takes a more medicinal approach. With extracts of echinacea, rosemary and sweet marjoram, it attempts to take some of the sting out of a cold or the flu ($7.50 for 4 ounces at area drugstores).