Building 15 years of Brand Beckham: The rise of Britain’s ultimate super couple
As they celebrate their 15th wedding anniversary, we look at Victoria and David’s defining moments
Gone are the velvet wedding thrones and the matching his and hers outfits - Victoria and David Beckham are practically unrecognisable since they first became the stuff of tabloid dreams and got married 15 years ago today.
Their wedding went down as one of the most farcical and ostentatious events in matrimonial history; there were tiaras, huge dresses, outfit changes and a ludicrous amount of pictures.Then Kim and Kanye West came along and made the Beckhams’ nuptials look as discreet as wearing black to a funeral.
But the Beckhams are different. They are one of the few celebrity couples that have not only managed to stay together, but also one that has managed to maintain the same status. They’re as famous now as they ever were when she was a Spice Girl and he was a footballer. Today, they are not just considered celebrity fodder, but have also reached the top of their respective games, turning over a combined profit of £4million last year.
David famously retired from football in 2013, but is kept busy with his endorsement deals and charity campaigning, even starring in his own BBC documentary last month where he made it his mission to bike through the Amazon to teach a tribe what football is.
Victoria Beckham has successfully shed her blonde highlights and footballer’s wife reputation and become one of fashion’s most famous designers. Her fitted, lady-like dresses, that echo her personal style, sell like hotcakes and her relentless enthusiasm and hard work have made her well-liked within an industry that is famously snobby.
They both seem to have an astute awareness of what they’re good at and what the public want for them, and they run with it. For David, it’s his sporting prowess and genuine nice guy image. Most people wouldn’t turn down a pint with him; his enthusiasm for supporting sporting causes is palpable. Affair accusations aside – all of which he’s vehemently denied – he has built a firm reputation as a role model. And he doesn’t mind stripping off every few months to show off his H&M underwear ̶ he’s working to his strengths and he’s smart enough to know what sells.
For Victoria, she figured out that she loved clothes. She could have just fronted a string of lucrative fashion campaigns (which she did), but she did more - establishing a brand (two in fact now, including her contemporary line Victoria by Victoria) founded on fitted, luxurious dresses that had an accessible, timeless appeal. She wears her collections frequently and is perhaps the best ambassador there is for her label. She is criticised for not smiling enough, but truthfully, no one really wants her to – she has been pigeon-holed as snooty and vain and uses it to her advantage. The Beckhams attend the 'Charles James: Beyond Fashion' Costume Institute Gala at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in May
They have both aware of their parody personas and have ran with them injecting plenty of humour to the mix because they’re marketable and wholly loveable; David as a somewhat inarticulate, but nevertheless gentle and passionate campaigner and Victoria as a slightly self-conscious, hardworking and ambitious designer. They have reinvented their respective images, but kept playing to what we all want from them – sunglasses, football and all.
Like all great couples, they have cultivated separate identities that complement and support each other. Cynics will argue it's all a clever marketing tool, but anyone who has ever had an inside view into their lives will attest that they do genuinely adore each other and their family. And if it helps bring in a few more pounds, why not embrace humour and develop those personas into caricatures? After all, we wouldn't expect anything less.
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