After the Metaverse Fashion Week, Glossy spoke to Decentraland’s metaverse producer Giovanna Casimiro about what worked, what didn’t and how brands used the metaverse to their advantage.
Since fashion is an expansive, creative and largely sensory field, what happens when the clothes no longer feel? That was the question that encrypted social platform Decentraland explored during its inaugural Metaverse Fashion Week, which amassed a roster of brands including Etro, D&G, Imitation of Christ and Auroboros. It was one of the first explorations of fashion week experiences in the metaverse. A separate event, Crypto Fashion Week, launched in 2020, held its second edition at the same time. It was more about design creativity and a high definition experience.
Decentraland’s Metaverse Fashion Week reduced the resolution and added a social component to allow guests to experience the shows and purchase digital wearables using MANA, Decentraland’s cryptocurrency. The idea is to help brands expand their offering through the new metaverse revenue channel, which brands including Off-White have begun to embrace.
While the event has provided a metaverse platform for numerous brands, it has also proven that it has a long way to go, in terms of competing with established fashion events. Complications related to user access, the lack of cross-channel strategies between the digital and physical space, and insufficient gamification were some of the biggest disappointments. Giovanna Casimiro, the producer of the Decentraland metaverse, is keen to note that, as with all technologies, the former will be repeated and improved. She prioritized a more elegant and more fashion-oriented event next year.
In terms of numbers, Decentraland saw 108,000 unique attendees during MVFW’s five days. During the five days, 166,000 free wearables were minted, while 7,000 were sold by different designers and brands. In total, wearables worth around $ 77,000 were sold during MVFW.
As this is an inaugural event, these numbers are promising for brands like Tommy Hilfiger who are looking to engage with new gaming consumers.. “We had 30% new users, which is an important number for us, considering that many people in the traditional fashion industry have given us the opportunity to come to the metaverse for the first time,” said Casimiro. “We mainly considered our impact on the traditional fashion and luxury industry. We were able to leave a mark on this ”.
The reception of the brand at the event was good, according to Casimiro. For many brands, it was the first time they saw their stores and runways come to life in a virtual space after weeks or months of development. “Some have had criticisms [and requested] customize avatars more in the future. It’s something we’ll definitely try harder, with more time, ”she said. “But I think we will have a good retention of these brands in cyberspace.”
While brands like Dolce & Gabbana have been able to come up with cat-like avatars for their runways and other brands have had broader clothing options, this will be a priority for all brands involved going forward. “The catwalks have been one of the biggest challenges for our team, because it’s practically a sequence of animated elements and characters in sync with a brand’s expectations. They brought a new standard to the runways, ”she said.
With the full schedule not going to be released until the week of the event, the need for smoother operations will be the center of attention next time as well. Casimiro said Decentraland will make an open call for the brand to be included in late July or early August this year. The team will begin producing from then on, with the goal of offering brands more personalized experiences for brands and attracting more celebrities and print exclusives to fuel more advertising.
Casimiro also noted that brands received a better reception from the community when they created exclusive collections for the platform, which will link to more playful experiences in the future. Not all brands have created specific collections for the metaverse, for example Dolce & Gabbana no.
“Some of these luxury companies and brands still want to try to abstract from what they already have in their collection. Also, the shops had no quests or exploration items. They were more like an exhibition exhibit in space. This is definitely something we should introduce: gamify more, reward players for being in that space, “she said.
One of the key issues this year was access, as noted by some members of the Press And guests. A large number of guests entering the spaces at the same time were sometimes faced with a black screen or were transported to different districts in the game. Moving forward, the platform will offer several solutions to mitigate this. For example, it will have the desktop client for MacBook and Windows, which will help many people see the highest graphics experience possible.
More importantly, the platform will also be accessible via VR and AR wearables. “It is very likely that we will have VR capabilities for headsets in place by the end of this year or early next year, which will allow people to see the experience differently,” said Casimiro. “We hope to create more connections between the physical and the digital next year. Augmented realities (AR) such as video projection and real-time video mapping can easily accomplish this. “
From now until the next MVFW, which will arrive in March next year, Decentraland will host multiple events that will allow brands to get involved. They will focus on Pride Month, Art Week, and the music-focused Metaverse Festival that Paris Hilton attended last year. Casimiro also plans to partner with Paris Fashion Week on a phygital event. “We are planning to continue interacting with the fashion community from different angles. We want to involve different communities and key personnel from the fashion industry to show the collections at these events, “he said.