Ivanka Trump, daughter of Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, walks to the podium during the final day of the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Thursday, July 21, 2016. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci) ...and more »
By The Associated Press
NEW YORK (AP) â€” It was a moment the head of any fashion label hopes for: A presidential candidateâ€™s daughter wears the brandâ€™s dress as she introduces him to accept the nomination. The speaker was Ivanka Trump, the sleeveless studded sheath came from her own line, and the candidate she spoke about was her father.
The next morning, she tweeted a link promoting the dress. It was a move that blended politics and business under a huge spotlight, as her father Donald Trump has done throughout the campaign.
Her ensemble was â€œmodern, feminine and beautiful,â€ said Peter Marx, president of the Washington, D.C.-area luxury womenâ€™s fashion shop Saks Jandel. He said powerful politicians put a lot of thought into the image theyâ€™re projecting through their clothes even if theyâ€™re trying to communicate that clothes arenâ€™t important to them. He said all of Donald Trumpâ€™s children showed an â€œimmaculateâ€ style at the convention.
Though the dress will not be available until this fall, since Thursday night a similar blush-colored dress from the Ivanka Trump Collection has sold out at Nordstrom.com and Macys.com, a brand spokesperson said.
Most Read StoriesItâ€™s no surprise that Ivanka Trump might choose to wear something from her own brand, which includes clothing, accessories, shoes and fragrances. But using the RNC to market her clothing got people talking.
â€œThis is pretty novel, other than her father trying to sell Trump Steaks himself in his prior television appearance,â€ said Robert Kelner, a partner at the law firm Covington & Burling.
Kelner, who is in charge of the firmâ€™s election and political law practice, compared Ivanka Trumpâ€™s promotion of her fashion line to a Hollywood designer having a high-profile actor or actress wear their clothes on the red carpet. He said itâ€™s legal and doesnâ€™t violate any ethical rules since Ivanka Trump herself isnâ€™t a candidate for office, but said some people might find the promotion â€œunseemlyâ€ in the context of politics.
Thatâ€™s a hard line to draw when it comes to Donald Trump. He ascended to the Republican nomination by claiming his business acumen as the ultimate credential. He touts a net worth of more than $10 billion, much of it tied up in the value of his own name and companies bearing that moniker. As he accepted the Republican nomination on Thursday, screens around the stage proclaimed â€œTrumpâ€ in giant letters on a golden barrier, much like on the outside of a Trump building.
â€œHis brand is all about his wealth and his business, and so itâ€™s not surprising that the campaign would be very closely associated with his business,â€ Kelner said. â€œBy now itâ€™s clear I think the voters donâ€™t seem to mind.â€
Trump has sometimes mixed his campaign and his businesses. At a speech in March, he displayed a table full of Trump Winery beverages (the vineyard is run by his son Eric), Trump-branded water and magazines, and steaks that he suggested were from his Trump Steak brand even though that was discontinued years ago.
Kelner says if Trump becomes president, his business holdings could cause conflicts of interest that wouldnâ€™t easily be resolved. But thereâ€™s reason to think the campaign will be good for his business, and for his daughterâ€™s.
â€œWhatever this family decides to do after the election should they not win, they have definitely increased their brand,â€ Marx says.
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