Polaroid And Lady Gaga Collaborate On Retro Chic

When it comes to retro photography, Polaroid have you covered. That the Polaroid name still exists in the face of the digital camera industry that ate it alive is impressive, as is the loyalty that enthusiasts and 'retro' adherents display for the brand. But if you're trying to sell 'retro' electronics as a lifestyle accessory, there's a ready made and outspoken celebrity there to speak out on your behalf: Lady Gaga. Appointed as Creative Director just over a year ago, Gaga is now the new face of Polaroid. And at CES 2011, the partnership has already borne fruit with a pair of Designer sunglasses.

Keeping to a Polaroid / Gaga theme, the GL20 sunglasses combine a camera with a little Gaga oddness: a pair of OLED displays in the frames. The concept is easy enough: you can take photos and display the results in place of your eyes, on the outward facing screens of the Sunglasses. The glasses are clearly aimed at a stylish, clubbing audience of scene kids and other unmentionables. What the glasses lack in terms of practicality is made up for by their plausibility. Both Polaroid and Gaga clearly know their brands and the type of people that gravitate towards them.

Standing next to a man in an ascot, Gaga was at CES promoting their new 'Grey Label'. Despite keeping the press gang waiting for over a half an hour, the consensus was that she seemed remarkably knowledgeable and invested in the product line. A GL10 wireless photo printer was shown in addition to the sunglasses and a GL30 instant camera. Both products are clearly inspired by Polaroid's past. The GL10 is a miniaturised printer designed to be carried around in a bag or handbag. The all in one printing / photography abilities of the GL30 definitely replicate the Polaroid experience of old, but with logical digital innovations (storage of snaps to SD card and LCD screen feedback). The technology behind the printing has changed too, with both devices using a new inkless 'Zink' solution that keeps instant snaps compact but high quality.

The word from Polaroid HQ is that Gaga is actually the brainstorming source of many of the ideas in the 'Grey Label' line, so this goes beyond simple celebrity endorsement. Though both brands are boosted by the partnership, most were still not convinced by the Ladies glasses.


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