Shift to digital is the order of the day. There is no reason why the fashion industry would choose to stay away from it.
Digital's penetration into fashion has been unique compared to many other industry verticals. For instance, it has penetrated the gaming culture, empowering gamers with ‘skins’ — outfits and weapons that decorate the in-game avatars.
Trading physical products for digital experience, primarily through emergent technologies like the blockchain, is gaining ground fast. The market size for video games skins alone has hit US$50 billion. I talked to Rok Bozic, the cofounder of Internet Made to understand the nuances of this industry and where it is heading.
What Is Digital Fashion?
“Digital fashion is everything that is beyond our access in real life. It comes with the excitement of experimenting with physics, reality, clothing, and design while opening up unprecedented access to fashion by presenting designers in a relevant way to the digital generation and new audiences.”
“Internet Made is helping artists and designers take their careers to the next level by engaging directly with consumers in a first-of-its-kind digital marketplace. Internet Made is where fashion professionals with a vision discover ways to monetize their work and bring change for good. We empower artists and designers to become a positive force in the world of fashion by promoting new trends throughout the industry, providing exciting opportunities, and backing them up with cutting-edge technology.”
“We believe in giving digital artists the platform to connect and deliver the most creative fashion and jewelry designs. We also help them communicate effectively to internal and industry audiences.”
What Technologies Come Into Play Here?
“Technology is revolutionizing the fashion industry, deepening the impact of the work of creative professionals. The digital age is about self-expression, risk-taking, and smart technologies offering better human experiences.”
“Post Space, for instance, is radically re-imagining this emerging fashion-tech space, exploring the beautification technology for wearables and digital prints.”
“Essentially, we’re laying the foundation for new fashion cultures and creating new markets, equipped with opportunities for realization, monetization, and growth for up-and-coming talents and established players alike.”
What Are Some Application Areas Of Digital Fashion?
“Our initial collection offers access to what our future collection holds in wearables, events, physical clothing, and our ecosystem. We see the most significant opportunity in wearables. It is already a multi-billion dollar market segment in video games and will expand further with the concept of metaverse augmenting itself further.”
How Do You See The Fashion Industry Accommodating Digital Fashion And NFTs?
“In the digital world, fashion designers, artists, and brands can experiment with clothing the way they cannot in real life. I believe in Web3.0 and its game-changing potential in the fashion industry. It will make fashion sustainable, improve the work environment, supply chain, profit margins, quality, and remove entry barriers. In short, Web3.0 will change the fashion industry for the better.”
As Georgio Armani famously once said: “The decline of the fashion system as we know it began when the luxury segment adopted the operating methods of fast fashion, mimicking the latter’s endless delivery cycle in the hope of selling more, yet forgetting that luxury takes time, to be achieved and to be appreciated.”
“Today, the luxury goods industry is looking eagerly for mechanisms for counterfeit prevention and proof of ownership, particularly critical in the luxury fashion industry. However, these are not the only challenges brands and consumers face in this sector.”
What Can Be Done To Address These Challenges?
With consumer preference shifting towards ethical supply chains, brands have increased pressure to trace and track supply chains and identify unethical manufacturing practices. Three implementable solutions can readily address these pressing needs.
Implementation Of Fair Pricing Mechanisms
The lack of a transparent, standardized, fair-pricing index leads the current system to measure value subjectively. The industry needs a standardized way to validate and authenticate these luxury goods.
Recognizing Counterfeit Merchandise
The counterfeit goods market is a crucial source of destabilization to the luxury goods market per se. According to reports, the counterfeit fashion market may cost consumers as much as $450 billion each year.
Transparent And Traceable Supply Chains
Consumers are becoming increasingly conscious of where their luxury goods come from. According to the 2015 Nielsen Global Corporate Sustainability Report, approximately two-thirds of respondents indicated that they would pay more for sustainable goods. But there is no way for merchants and consumers to track the entire life cycle, from sourcing to final production.
What Role Does Digital Fashion Play In The Future?
“Just like people wear, rep, and flex their clothing in real life — we see that trend continuing in the metaverse. People have experimented with clothing from the beginning of time to create their own identity. The efficient use of technology now helps us let go of all the limits and allow our imagination to fly wild.”