Luxury Fashion in the Metaverse – Part 2
Fashion is experimental, constantly evolving and taking on new forms.
In part one of this series, we discussed why what the metaverse is and the future of luxury. However, there are other applications of fashion in the metaverse such as AR, video games and virtualization.
Within the metaverse, the luxury apparel industry has a head start on adopting the technologies of 3D design and augmented reality.
Since the dawn of Snapchat, luxury companies have used AR filters to emulate “trying on” a product—be it makeup or accessories. Doing so has earned luxury brands untapped revenue streams from advertising and expanded markets to reach new audiences in new locations, both virtually and geographically.
In 2020, luxury brands such as Dior and Prada also created their augmented reality filters on Instagram. Since then, companies have moved toward occupying the space of NFTs, digital pieces now fused with AR, VR and blockchain technology.
Avatars & Skins
For anyone who has played a video game with a customizable avatar, you understand the time and dedication to build a user you love.
Virtual worlds such as Roblox and Fortnite have given creative freedom to their players who thrive off the customization features of their appearance and, more importantly, their clothes. In one instance, Gucci partnered with Roblox to create a virtual world, The Gucci Garden. Before then, in October 2020, the brand designed three outfits as part of a virtual campaign to target a younger audience.
Separate from avatars are virtual skins—a graphic download that alters the appearance of characters. In 2021, Balenciaga and Fortnite collaborated to offer players digital outfits, such as one for an in-game price of 2,700 V-Bucks (purchased with real dollars). Balenciaga also took the partnership a step further: anyone who bought their clothing in real-life could also unlock the outfits in Fortnite.
The Virtualization of Fashion
Fashion is experimental, constantly evolving and taking on new forms. Its virtualization continues to make strides towards new applications, but some designers and their brands are already there. For such designers, moving to 3D aids with sustainability concerns, especially with the rise of fast fashion, unethical production practices and the issue of product returns. Virtual fashion creates a much smaller ecological footprint.
Designers can develop, sample and streamline the entire process with digital pieces—without ever lifting a needle.
Additionally, these virtual garments attract younger audiences like Gen Z and millennials, who are more likely to engage with filters, lenses and video games. While it’s no surprise that women are more likely to be the customer base, the world of NFTs and investments is still very male-dominated.
If you’re looking to understand more about fashion’s role in the metaverse and hiring new, exceptional talent, start a conversation with a recruiter today. The Bowerman Group has over 20 years of experience in recruiting qualified professionals for our clients’ needs.