Fashion and technology have come together causing exponential growth in recent years. Specifically, the 2014 fashion week has been transformed across the globe. New York Fashion Week Spring/Summer 2014 brought in Google Glass to creative directors, magazine editors, and bloggers alike. This allowed for the every day consumer to see the backstage madness, front row gossip, and designer catwalk within the hour of its live performance. Google glass, being hands-free, fully immersed the media in the show versus having to multitask by looking down at their phone or camera.
For the Autumn/Winter 2014 London Fashion Week, Topshop is going to further strengthen this fashion tech trend. The Topshop Unique collection will be streamed live with the help of Inition’s 3D 360-Degree headset. All of the pre-show and post-show extras will be included as well. The idea that one brand of a once-exclusive industry turning towards inclusivity in real time and space sets a standard for competitors. The advancement of tech and fashion is going to create more demand from the consumer in turn creating a niche marketplace for technology companies to step up.
There are five of Inition’s headsets located in the display window of Topshop’s flagship store in London’s Oxford Circus. How does one earn a seat? Topshop is promoting the idea by asking consumers to tweet or instagram their own favorite London Fashion Week look by using a hashtag (#Topshopgoesvirtual). The lucky five with the best look will win a seat to watch the show live via the 3D experience on Sunday, February 16th at 3:00pm. While five are watching through the headsets, many more outside will be watching them through the display window. I can see this crowd to blow up Topshop’s online viewership and drive foot traffic to the store by those in the area and returning customers. If Topshop’s objective was to increase brand awareness and loyalty, I see this taking off; however, I don’t find it to be strong enough to drive sales. This event is very industry specific. To influence purchasing decision, especially for a new customer, Topshop would have to speak more on the details of the new clothing line coming out versus representing their leadership in advancing fashion week.
Topshop and Inition’s decision to work together makes sense. Both companies are London based and both of their startups revolutionized their own industry. Their partnership on this creates a central location to receive insider information for industry moguls and loyal consumers. Now, we just sit back, watch it unfold, and quantify the results in determining a portion of its success…or failure.
[Images: WWD, Topshop, Inition]
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