The Technology Take-Over: Fashion Week S/S16
September means only one thing… Fashion Week. The time of year where we get our first glimpse of the trends that will be taking the retail market by storm over the coming season…
Kicking off in New York, designers such as Givenchy, Rag & Bone, and Diane Von Furstenburg are debuting their creative collections for Spring/Summer 2016. So far we have seen a number of key trends, such as patchwork, tie-dye, and cold shoulders, which all seem to contribute to this ‘Beachy’, and if not a little bit retro, style that us guys at gm-design are very much loving!
However nowadays, it doesn’t seem enough to host a single catwalk show. Despite being in a room full of influential figures (from celebrities, to journalists and bloggers), the level of exposure that brands are seeking goes beyond the venue’s four walls… and a 15 minute runway!
This is why more and more brands are using social media and digital platforms alike, to help support the launch of their collections. Wanting to ensure they are accessible for all customers, technology is allowing brands to interact with the audience on a personal level from the get-go! After all, they are the most important judge, right?
Misha Nonoo, who made her debut on the fashion scene at New York Fashion Week in 2011, chose to go completely against the traditional runway this September. Instead, the designer showcased her entire Spring/Summer 2016 collection solely on Instagram. Scheduled and treated like any other catwalk, the ‘Insta-Show’ took place on Saturday 12th September, with a guest list that was (literally) endless!
Flexing her creative skills even further, Misha presented her collection via a well-planned, visual experience. Encouraging viewers to hold their device horizontally, over a period of time individual images were uploaded to the Instagram account (@mishanonoo_show) to carefully form part of a larger visual. It’s this teaser approach that ensured her catwalk delivered the same impact and excitement as any other live show. Viewers were kept hooked on the content, as they waited to see the individual looks unfold.
What I love about this “Insta-Show” is that the brand maximised their accessibility. Wanting to ensure the launch of her collection was limitless to buyers and journalists, Misha enabled anyone, from anywhere, to be apart of the event. In my opinion, the brand broke down any existing barriers between them and their audience, and gave true meaning to a collection created with the customer in mind.
Another brand exploiting the benefits of Instagram this year is fashion house, DKNY.
Following their show on September 16th, fans of the brand are being encouraged to view the collection via the hashtag #DKNYSS16. When users find an image that they like, they are then able to use the new Instagram Direct arrow functionality to post it back to the DKNY account (@dkny). After, users will receive a unique insight into that particular look, which is sent exclusively to them! This could be anything from the initial sketches to backstage footage of the show. Either way, the brand hopes to provide users with a personal experience that allows them to feel part of the DKNY family.
The campaign also ensures customers fully engage with the new collection, and the excitement surrounding the launch continues beyond fashion week!
Moving away from Instagram, Tommy Hilfiger chose to partner-up with Twitter for Fashion Week.
On Monday, the brand debuted the “Twitter Halo” – a multi-camera device that captures 360 degree videos, which can be shared in real-time through Twitter. This allowed the brand’s followers to view live backstage footage of the show… before, during and after. Again, this helped to cement the relationship between the brand and their fans, as they allowed their audience to be part of such an important day.
Each video was posted directly onto the brand’s profile for viewers to then favourite, retweet, and share on their other social media profiles with the hashtag #tommyspring16. By doing so, the brand encouraged online discussions and engagement, increasing their reach even further.
It’s not just Fashion Designers that are making the most of the available technology! Beauty brand, Marc Jacobs Beauty, have partnered with the luxury beauty app, Vênsettee, to be their exclusive makeup partner during New York Fashion week this season.
If you aren’t familiar with the app, it allows users to browse an array of hair and makeup looks, that they can then select and book with a professional artist. The service can be arranged for a time and location that suits you, and the look is delivered within 45 minutes! Perfect for any occasion (if you’re in the US that is!).
The partnership allows the beauty brand to showcase their products in a non-intrusive, honest way, as service users can see the product results for themselves.
One of New York Fashion Week’s sponsors this year is Intel – which isn’t surprising considering how intertwined the fashion and technology worlds are becoming.
Wanting to make their presence felt, the brand have carefully integrated a number of technologies into the event. For us, the most interesting one has to be the installation of MemoMi’s MemoryMirror at the New York Fashion Week headquarters in Manhattan.
As discussed in a recent blog post, Augmented Reality is slowly becoming a go-to in the fashion industry, for both online and offline retail. The mirror allows users to virtually try on clothes, something that New York Fashion Week attendees are having the opportunity to interact with first-hand.
If the reaction to this is positive, the impact could be huge given the amount of key decision makers that will be present!
So if you’re sat there wishing you could attend one of the 4 fashion weeks this September… you can! It might not be physically, but brands are making it easier for us than ever before to be there virtually and experience the events as they unfold (…and on the plus side, at least we won’t have to queue for a drink or the loo!).
However, if your busy schedule doesn’t suit the allocated time slots of your favourite designers, there’s always Snapchat to provide you with quick sneak previews throughout the day. With models, magazines and journalists all regularly uploading ‘stories’, you can get your Fashion Week fix wherever, whenever.
Check out some of FASHIONISTA’s recommended accounts to follow this September…
Marie Claire: @marieclairemag
Ariel Foxman, Editor-in-Chief of InStyle: @afoxman
Cindi Leive, Editor-in-Chief of Glamour: @cindileive
Edward Barsamian, Style Editor at Vogue.com: @edwardbarsamian
John Jannuzzi, Senior Digital Editor at GQ: johnjannuzzi
Kristie Dash, Assistant Beauty Editor at Allure: @kristiedash
Chriselle Lim: @chrisellelim
Estelle Chen: @estellechen
Gigi Hadid: @doublegiforce
Hailey Baldwin: @haileybisboring
Kendall Jenner: @kendalljenner
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