The futuristic design and high prices of digital fashion have been the main reasons that digital fashion has been so popular. A virtual sneaker drop sold for a staggering 3.1 million US Dollars, and a pair of shoes was priced at as high as 10,000 dollars. A show at the start of April showcased some of the most innovative moments in digital fashion. This phenomenon recently capitalized upon the boom in crypto art, where purely virtual art pieces are selling for millions.
Visitors to the Metaverse exhibition of digital fashion startup Dematerialised travelled to Cryptovoxels, a virtual world built on the Ethereum blockchain. Visitors could navigate streets filled with digital art using the arrow keys on the keyboards. It was a similar experience to Secondlife or Minecraft.
Digital fashion is slowly becoming a distinct discipline, as it is now part of an online virtual art gallery. Catty Taylor, cofounder of the Institute of Digital Fashion in London, stated that digital fashion is 3D models of clothing made using digital software.
Digital fashion fills the world
Taylor spoke about the Metaverse exhibition at Clubhouse. The exhibition featured Taylor’s ‘Boob Jig T-shirt’ which she designed in 2017 and a couture dress with digital crystals that she created in collaboration with August Getty in 2017.
Many bigger brands like Hugo Boss and Tommy Hilfiger are working to create their latest collections using 3D design software to cut down on samples and resources. However, digitally-exclusive garments and shoes have also found a market.
Karinna Nobbs, a phone operator, explained that the Metaverse exhibition featured the bright red ‘Pepa Trousers’ by Tribute Brands. This was the first label to create a business model around selling digital fashion to end consumers. The exhibition featured 15 items and was co-founded by her. The exhibition also featured Swedish apparel retailer Carlings, which was the first online store to offer digital fashion in 2018. This moment was commemorated by the silverhood tracksuit from Virtue, a creative agency.
A pair of sneakers made by Fewocious and Rtfkt, a digital sneaker brand, was not to be missed. The virtual shoes became a media hit after they raised 3.1 million dollars in just seven minutes. This collaboration is one example of digital fashion benefiting from virtual art’s recent trend.
The market for digital collectibles, such as art and video games, has boomed during the pandemic. These items have a unique digital identity and an associated value thanks to blockchain technology and non-fungible tokens. Digital fashion quickly becomes a collector’s piece. However, it is hard to determine its share in the NFT market.
Virtual clothes are available for purchase by anyone
Nobbs stated that fashion’s percentage is dependent on the way you define it. “Our target audience are quite diverse groups.” They include gamers, the crypto community, and fashion consumers. These are early adopters of technology who have an interest in sustainability and creatives that meet high aesthetic standards.
Nobbs stated that gamers don’t need to explain why they should purchase digital virtual goods. Fashion consumers require a lot more education and storytelling to explain the value of the tech or what an NFT are.
Digital fashion: The ideals behind it
This exhibition also shows how digital fashion can be used for sharing iconic masterpieces with an even wider audience. Superficial, a New York-based design studio, has digitalized clothing by Issey Myake and Thierry Mugler, and made them online so that anyone can view the details, drapes, and patterns.
The clubhouse discussion among digital fashion designers that took part in the exhibition was filled with optimism. Many see digital fashion as a way to improve the fashion industry. Digital clothing isn’t exclusive. It can be worn by anyone, anywhere, regardless of gender, appearance, or body shape. And it is more sustainable, according to Lisa Sello, Auroboros designer. The London-based label makes physical couture from natural materials. This results in garments that grow over time and eventually fall apart. Also, the designer duo launched a digital collection this year.
Clubhouse host Sello stated that “the more digital fashion appears for these sensory human elements the more it will be as well.” “People are looking for inspiration, and not just a light to guide them, I think, especially now. Because digital fashion is so innovative, it offers so many options.”