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Lost & Forgotten

Launch lessons

2012

When they noticed in companies and the absence of a method to carry out this reconnection of the brand with its values and essence, Flávia Nogueira and Victor Hayashida left behind successful careers and companies in the advertising market to, in 2012, found School/SS99 . 

​"Actually, we weren't sure what we were going to face. But you had to get lost in order to find yourself. creating what we believed in was fundamental in this process of dropping everything to go live an experience in a place that overflows with movement. New York is a great port for people from around the world".

New York, USA

Visiting the biggest hotel chains in the city, we noticed that there was a different atmosphere in those environments. Unlike what happens in Brazil or Latin America, hotel chains are true meeting points for tribes in every neighborhood in the city. The lobby began to be disputed and finding available spaces in the hotel's restaurants and rooms became an even more impossible mission.

It was a veritable combustion between the 360º communication happening right in front of us. From the hostess, to the architecture, to the people who attended, to the interior design, to the invitation flyers, to the curation of the sound that played in the environments and in the lobby, to the products sold in the hotel's shop, everything was connected. But it was not a simple connection, it was a lifestyle that that brand transmitted to its guests and visitors. Either you like it or you don't, but the style was pretty clear. It was already a niche communication happening in 2012.

Upon noticing this movement, Flávia and Victor began to study how they could build a methodology that would unite brands with people, something similar to what happened in hotel chains. Was it possible to connect to a lifestyle? 

As fashion students, Nogueira had already taken courses at FIT (Fashion Institute of Technology years ago) and Hayashida had always worked in fashion editorials with magazines in Brazil and studied in courses at FASM (Faculdade Santa Marcelina), both decided that they would base his method as fashion worked: seeking to understand the essence of a brand from its founders and then, through a study of trends, to find which attitude and positioning would be adopted at all points of contact.

Essence

We rented a space at Meatpacking to work. It was not an easy period, as there was a huge internal demand on our part because we had left everything in Brazil and we were in a totally different and very dynamic environment. On the way back, every night we stopped at a diner in Brooklyn to eat a hot dog and listen to a guy with his boom box. We realized that he was a well-known person, had participated in a video clip of The Killers and participated in a program like The Voicer called Apollo. But he had left everything to go back to being who he was, a street singer. That was an essence he never wanted to lose, for any money. This brought us a certain reflection that we will never forget where we came from, this should be an important base.

Paris, France

Nogueira has studied a lot of art history throughout his career. In search of new learning, he decided to study in one of the most iconic places in France, the castle of Fountaineblue. It was an important step to understand that in the research study to build the essence of a brand, the context in which it was formed should be as important and more important as who it had become.

By studying the history of how France a brand had become a reference in culture, elegance and desire, Flávia realized that Paris was how a brand should be built. Reading Louis XIV's diaries, it was clear to her that it all started at one point: Versailles. It was in that space that the world's first concept store was born. 

"Louis XIV brought his father's tradition and through trend research he brought the mirrors of Venice and the gardens of London to create what would be the French aesthetic. Validate every step of action in building a brand of desire.

What French schools teach about the Blue Ocean Strategy, that innovation is the balance between operation and cost management in favor of building desire, Louis XIV was already doing this by bringing the French treasurer by his side in the construction of his plan .

"What Louis XIV did to build Paris inspired the fashion industry to do the same. So much so that one of the first fashion labels in the world is French," says Flávia.

The fashion industry manages to work these concepts very well to this day. Fashion is about longevity of desire and no one else can connect desire to its consumers and stay current.

London, England.

The duo took advantage of this year 2012 to enter together in one of the most traditional schools in London for fashion and trend research, Central Saint Martins.

​"We took advantage of the European summer and the trend research courses to really understand how Londoners, who are known for always being the world's trendsetters, "looked at this subject", says Flávia.

It was very clear to us that for there to be a transgression there had to be a tradition. There is no transgression without tradition. And this was important in the work of developing the methodology that we were going to create", adds Victor.

attitude

Fashion is widely recognized for the product "clothes", but it is important to understand that fashion wears behavioral patterns. If observing the consumer today is essential for the success of communication, knowing how to wear it is to understand their desires in depth.

What we realize is that the fashion industry is a commodity industry, and the margins that this industry manages to achieve are surprising. It deals with desire, with affinity and especially, it connects the truth of its founder to the truth of its consumer.

Understanding the essence, observing where this truth will take us, made us understand more clearly how a brand could and should express itself, in its way of being, in the way of acting, speaking, thinking, dressing. Everything would be connected to a single lifestyle that would truly communicate with its consumer niche. 

Brand Anatomy ®

We spent this period in NYC focused on how we could design a methodology that could truly transform brands into people and communicate with desire and attitude.

I took advantage of everything I learned in design to now design processes. Thinking like a designer helped me understand how I could build each step of a great framework.

And I started to use a lot of my writing to tell the journey of a thought that should always respect the truth and soul of a brand and how this story should be shielded at each stage of this process, adds Flávia.

School SS99

The office's inspiration couldn't be different if it didn't take fashion as an example. Inspired by the most transgressive show by the English stylist Alexander McQueen, the Sping Summer 1999 the duo would have no doubts about the name of their office. 

​"School" comes from school and the teachings that this whole journey could take us. Not only in learning how fashion builds desires, but also in learning what the process of undertaking would be. We believed that each client, each job would be a new learning experience, and that motivated us a lot.

One of Alexander McQueen's quotes was "You have to know the rules to break them. That's what I'm here for: to demolish the rules, but keep the tradition." business onwards. It was necessary to understand the rules and their tradition in order to propose a complete transgression based on studies of trends and consumer behavior.

Back in Brazil, our first Case

Back in Brazil in 2013, the duo chose a calm and peaceful place reminiscent of the streets of Europe to set up what would become their office. 

It was necessary to build and put into practice everything that we had designed in the previous year. And it would not be more correct than to apply our methodology to ourselves. And so we did. 

We were looking for a house that represented many of the brand values that we wanted to build. It shouldn't be those offices in corporate rooms and buildings, but a house that had environments that sought not vertical but horizontal integration. That would bring an intimate atmosphere and that would provide our clients with an escape and a time in which they could effectively rethink their business models and especially communication.

“Customers only understand our methodology when they know our house. It was our first big case, and that's what they buy: the connection at all points of contact”, says Victor.

Recognition

In our first year, the result really exceeded all our expectations. Our office was elected one of the 4 most inspiring in São Paulo, and was featured in many international publications.

Of course this put us as "Interior Designers" or architecture office. This recognition was important, because we also had the chance to tell people that the environment communicates as much as a printed media, a logo or a campaign. A brand's identity must express itself in 3D, in making the bricks also communicate.

I believe that if customers did not enter our house, they would hardly understand what we were proposing to the market. Seeing and feeling our methodology working at all points of contact certainly helped us a lot to materialize our methodology. This was very important in the first few months, when we still didn't have big clients as a portfolio.

Bringing the Life+Style to Branding

Brand Essence

lifestyle

Methodology

School/SS99

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