Fashion shows have always been in-person events, where the brands interact with the world through their designers, the runway ramps, a lot of pomp & show, and glittering events designed around the seasonal changes and trends in fashion. Do note that all these fashion shows were held in places where the entry of the common man is either restricted or limited or reserved for the privileged few. So if you want to be at a fashion show in Paris, you need first to get an invite, plan your travel and stay, and then take the pain of actually being there physically after a long and arduous journey and jet lags. With the onset of the pandemic two years back, people also realized that there is an underlying threat to the industry that may restrict an in-person event at any time.
Over the past few months, there has been a rising interest in the concept of the metaverse and its various use cases – mostly creative in nature. The fashion industry has already started taking notice of Metaverse and changing its strategies around it. The experiences that can be achieved within the metaverse is what fashion shows need to explore to see how they can be more experiential than they usually are.
Opportunities presented for a Fashion Show in the Metaverse
A fashion show in the Metaverse is an exciting opportunity for brands to showcase their latest designs and interact with their audiences in new and immersive ways. Some of these new opportunities presented to the brands are as follows:
- Space is not a limit – For one, one of the limitations for a fashion show is the space and the number of participants that can be invited or can participate. With metaverse tech, brands can create a fashion show arena of their own desired space and adjust the shape and size to accommodate a larger number of participants than practically possible.
- No Geographical boundaries – As the technology is virtual and online, there are no geographical boundaries. Users will be able to attend fashion shows from the comfort of their own homes from any part of the world. With technologies like Virtual reality, the user will be in the show – part of the show as their own avatar.
- Unlimited Shows – Metaverses are not time-bound. So a brand can organize a show that transcends time zones. You can hold a fashion show anytime, anywhere, for everyone across the world and do that unlimited times. A fashion show on repeat in the metaverse is not going to be like a repeat telecast on FTV. It will still be immersive for the new visitor. The shows will, of course, not be bound by any seasons as well.
- Revenue from Tickets & Special Show NFTs – A brand organizing a fashion show can create a revenue stream by selling tickets to the show and also by creating a limited edition NFT collection minted for a particular show. These special show NFTs can be used to provide privileges for those who buy them.
- New Experiences – User on the ramp – Imagine a Fashion show where the user – as his avatar – becomes the person to walk the ramp. The Brand can invite anyone to present the clothing line to the world. That way, the brand can interact with the target crowd, spend less on avatars of models, and create a virtual experience for the user that has a bigger impact. The brands can also involve users and incentivize them to be a part of the show as a presenter or models.
- New Experiences – Behind the Scenes – A user can also be treated with an experience of what happens behind the scenes of a fashion show or an interaction with a model or other attendees. This, of course, can be a privileged experience for a select few – something like a private party – say for those who buy a particular type of ticket or NFT, as mentioned above.
- New Clothing Lines for the Metaverse – In the real world, we may have some clothing created for fashion shows or use a particular type of fabric that may not be practical enough for physical production. This changes in the metaverse. Create what you want in whichever way, like for the metaverse.
- New Locales for Shows – Imagine doing a fashion show in space or in the setting of the world’s largest cave. The metaverse can enable the creation of such locales. Now would that not be an experience in itself?
- Instant Sale – Fashion shows can also enable the instant sale or auction off their Limited edition wearable NFTs of their digital clothing line while the fashion show is on or maybe after it gets over. This provides instant validation of the fashion trend that has been displayed.
- Shows linked to Experiential Brand Stores – Fashion brands are creating new experiential stores in the metaverse that showcases their ideas, concepts, clothes, and other merchandise, which any avatar can enter. Some of these stores will have AI-built interaction with the user that will give a lot of value to the individual’s taste and need. Imagine being led into an area where the brand store has a live fashion show going on.
Enhancing Show Experiences with VR Tech
Having said all of the above, the question is how it all gets executed and how a brand could create the experience that we keep talking about. While metaverse technologies are continuously evolving, it is believed that the metaverse, aided by Virtual Reality or VR technology, will change the perception of fashion shows by creating a much more immersive and better-simulated environment.
Fashion brands have already made their debut in the Metaverse with NFTs, stores, and some subtle experiences and events for the users; however, once the VR tech marries into the Metaverse properly, fashion show experiences will be a world apart.
Known as immersive digital experiences, VR tech will blend digital fashion and physical realities that will be more interactive and make the experience believable. In simpler terms: it’ll be like watching live streams of Instagram, but with headsets on.
With VR Tech –
- Fashion shows created by brands enable a 3D rendition of their products, which cannot be experienced in 2D or on television
- The 360-degree view of the fashion show venue will allow users to enjoy the show from all possible angles
- Social interactions between fashion show participants will be at an entirely new level
- Brands and fashion influencers can host live side events during the fashion show with their followers literally “face-to-face”
At the end – For the love of Fashion and Tech
The amalgamation of Metaverse with Fashion will essentially reshape the experiences around a fashion show in a big way. Brands can leverage this opportunity by engaging with their audiences—both existing and potential—during a Fashion show. The gap between the virtual and real world is continuously narrowing while Web3 advances. The average fashion show enthusiast will increasingly have more choices to express themselves and participate in the fashion industry as an active participant and influence the industry in a significant way. What the real world could not give, in the Metaverse, the user will essentially be king and drive the fashion shows in a big way. We believe newer fashion trends are incoming..