As life continues in the grip of the virus outbreak, the fashion industry, like all others, seeks digital asylum to maintain their survival.
The fashion industry delayed many of its significant events in the light of the pandemic—Paris Fashion Week 2020 to Milan fashion season. Virtual clothing, virtual catwalks, and virtual showrooms have replaced the traditional ways of the fashion industry.
Luxury brand owners felt the first rumblings of the storm when Covid-19 spread through China, the country whose citizens accounted for 90% of global luxury market growth in 2019.
When the virus reached Italy, where many brands are headquartered and have vital suppliers, they faced the additional challenge of operating as and where possible amid a national lockdown.
According to the reports of Bain & Company, digital recourse and catwalks, along with exhibitions, might be the future of luxury fashion brands. Bvlgari and Moschino have already jumped the wagon with their VR experience of their clothing and sales. The rest are expected to follow soon.
Matthew Drinkwater, Head of the Fashion Innovation Agency (FIA) at the London College of Fashion, says that his team’s workload has escalated sharply during the crisis. The agency develops immersive consumer experiences that bring technology giants, including Microsoft MSFT and LucasFilm, together with leading fashion brands.
When asked why the sudden surge? He reported, “The FIA are experts at delivering digital fashion solutions that defy physical limitations and even reality,” and Drinkwater explained that there is a dramatic shift towards digital solutions at this time of mass quarantine.
Managing the spasms hasn’t been easy, says the report of Coresight Research. “If your customers are worried about human contact, therefore, your business has a new and unexpected challenge,” says Alan Behr, a Fashion Industry Attorney, and Partner at Phillips Nizer.
For the first time in the company’s history, Georgio Armani canceled its live show in Milan, although the fashion house did stream footage of models walking down the runway online. Covid-19 is forcing brands to invest in an immersive UX, and experiments with technology are taking over the coveted physical events.
Even the MET gala, which has witnessed the most significant fashion moments of the decade, has taken a backseat for an indefinite period in this isolation season. Brands are looking to expand their virtual reach through sustainable and collaborative methods.