American Standard In Wonderland


High-end kitchens and bathrooms tend to showcase similar creatives and campaign strategies. There are glossy images of stainless steel products and big city lifestyles all glamorously portrayed in home decor print publications.  

In order to differentiate itself from these clichéd concepts, DXV by American Standard and 22squared are introducing the “As Told By DXV” campaign, which reimagines classic works of literature -- like Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, Beauty and the Beast, and Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde -- to demonstrate to affluent homeowners and designers the brand's ability to create a personal story for their kitchens and bathrooms. 

In the “Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde” ad, for instance, the visual is one of a man with an image of a looming and intimidating face tattoo sprawled across his back. However, in looking at the mirror and his surroundings, one notices his other side is otherwise elegant and tasteful -- playing off the two-sided character of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. In the “Beauty and the Beast” ad, a young girl is taking a sudsy bath with her “beast”, her pet dog, in a modern twist to the classic tale. Both ads feature the tagline designed to encourage people to “tell your story” with DXV. 

While it may not necessarily be a quick jump for people to connect DXV with classic literature, agency executives say the brand's backstory was perfectly suited for this creative reinterpretation. “DXV is a collection of the best design movements from the past century and half," says Curt Mueller, group creative director, 22squared.  

"When looking at how people design their homes, we realized that they used design to tell a story. So our team took classic literature and reimagined these stories using DXV products. The result was print that stood out from the category and encouraged people to tell stories in their own homes using timeless DXV pieces.” 

These three literary-based ads are running in a mix of consumer and targeted trade publications covering architecture and home design including Architectural Digest, Traditional Home, Robb Report Home & Style, Veranda, Elle Decor, and House Beautiful

22squared has been working with American Standard since 2012 and on the DXV brand since it was introduced in 2014. Earlier this year, 22squared and American Standard launched a $5 million potty-humor based campaign for the brand's VorMax flushing system that achieved some viral success with its boundary-pushing creative. The "Splatter" ad, for instance, opens with an elderly man spraying ketchup -- including a squirting sound -- over all his yellow shirt -- while his wife proclaims that "no one wants to look at splatter" before the ad cuts to the American Standard toilet system. 

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