Ever since Meta (formerly known as Facebook) popularised the concept of Metaverse, major brands have been looking to capitalise on trending virtual spaces. The fashion industry is no exception: brands small and large are seeking to get their headstart in the metaverse. In the coming years, we will see new fashion trends emerge at the intersection of haute couture and virtual reality.
This year, virtual fashion has taken centre stage with the Metaverse Fashion Week (MVFW).
The MVFW is a four day virtual event which was hosted in Decentraland. Decentraland labels itself as a browser based virtual platform. But at its heart, it is a fully realised 3D virtual space. You may have heard of such 3D virtual worlds–the most popular one in the 2000s was Second Life.
Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg believes that virtual spaces like Decentraland will play a major role in next-generation marketing and branding. As such, fashion brands are flocking to spaces like Decentraland this year. The day may not be far when “virtual fashion weeks” held in the metaverse will be commonplace and on par with traditional fashion events such as NYFW.
Brands at MFVW include the usual fashion houses such as Dolce & Gabbana, Tommy Hilfiger, Elie Saab, Estée Lauder, Forever 21 etc. Many major fashion brands did not participate in MVFW. This may change in the coming years.
Besides brands, many prominent names associated with virtual fashion (Auroboros, DressX etc.) also featured their collections at MVFW.
In total, there are over 70 brands, houses, designers etc. participating in MVFW.
The 2022 MVFW also marked a historic milestone. UK fashion giant Selfrdges established the first virtual/meta department store in Decentraland. Consumers can buy virtual and physical products using cryptocurrency at the Selfridges store.
Such virtual stores are likely to become more popular. It remains to be seen if they will complement e-commerce stores (or even replace them entirely) in the coming decade.
Just like on Second Life, anyone can buy “virtual land” in Decentraland. All such land purchases in Decentraland are facilitated by NFTs.
You may wish to establish your brand profile in such Metaverse-like virtual spaces. A core strategy to pursue is buying and establishing virtual stores for your business. The earlier you can do this, the better. At present, companies are buying up land in virtual spaces estimated to be thousands of dollars. Should the metaverse become mainstream, virtual land prices will shoot up.
Have you attended a fashion show or event on a virtual world platform? If not, will you consider doing so in the future? Also, are you thinking of establishing your blockchain-powered virtual store someday? We’ll love to hear from you so be sure to like and comment!