British cycling company Rapha presents itself as a premium brand offering high quality apparel, concierge travel services, boutique 'clubhouses' and beautiful publications. Since 2004, it has enjoyed year-on-year growth and in 2016 sales increased almost 30% to £63 million (Wood 2017). This chapter critiques how we can know that and know how (Roberts and Armitage 2016) Rapha is a luxury brand – contrary to its labelling as 'premium' – and how this can be established through socio-cultural sense-making of the brand offerings, through critical textual analysis. This chapter interrogates how Rapha has developed a luxurious 'storyworld' (Abbott 2008) and charts how story strands of luxury are woven through its material artefacts, texts and environments, acting as a symbolic 'red thread' that cohesively binds the brand together.
|Title of host publication||Understanding Luxury Fashion|
|Subtitle of host publication||From Emotions to Brand Building|
|Editors||Isabel Cantista, Teresa Sádaba|
|Place of Publication||Cham|
|Publication status||Published - 15 Jan 2020|
|Name||Palgrave Advances in Luxury|