Decoded Fashion - Weekly Stories - Burberry Apple TV Us
Image source: Burberry

The most-liked Instagram post of 2015 featured Kendall Jenner lying on the floor with her hair shaped into hearts, wearing a lace gown by Zuhair Murad. In fact, much of Jenner’s success in cracking the fashion industry can be credited to the social media following she has amassed as part of a growing pack of ‘Insta-models.’

As our increasingly digitised society sees print media sales drop year after year, traditional advertising campaigns are falling flat, fast. Today’s fashion-hungry consumer digests everything through technology – be it by reading fashion blogs, shopping online, or monitoring Jenner’s style on Instagram. So how is this changing the way that fashion brands communicate?

On January 11, Burberry launched its own Apple TV channel by using the platform to stream its A/W 16-17 menswear show. For a brand that has famously embraced new technology, it’s an obvious next step. However, Burberry will not be offering in-app purchases – instead, the channel will be used for marketing purposes, live-streaming the heritage brand’s runway shows and giving fans access to beauty tutorials, archived runway footage and exclusive sessions with British musicians.

Last weekend, J.W. Anderson’s decision to exclusively live-stream his A/W 16-17 show on gay dating app Grindr raised a few eyebrows across the fashion community. Grindr users received a secret code on the day of the show to gain access, while those who missed it were able to watch an edited recording afterwards. The young British designer dubbed his decision to partner with the app a “no-brainer”, telling the New York Times: “I think fashion is a sexy platform as well, ultimately.”

This week also sees the announcement that Diesel, under the artistic direction of Nicola Formichetti, has also taken to dating apps to flaunt its wares. The Italian label will be advertising its new underwear range this spring on Grindr and Tinder, as well as websites Pornhub and YouPorn.

While J.W. Anderson may be the first to live-stream a runway show on Grindr, Diesel will become the first to advertise on the dating app. “I want to go where people are,” Formichetti told i-D magazine. “Tinder, Grindr and Pornhub might appear a little left field, but it’s Diesel – we can do it, we’re not scared of these places.” With Pornhub being the 64th most-visited website in the world and Tinder sitting at number 72 in the App Store’s top free app chart, Formichetti might be on to something – perhaps 2016 will be the year that fashion takes on dating apps.

Finally, of course, there’s Instagram, which was once dubbed by Eva Chen, the company’s head of fashion partnerships, as the “water cooler” of the fashion community. Brands like Michael Kors, designers like Olivier Rousteing and models like Gigi Hadid have built up huge followings on the social media platform – but it has also created a democratisation of fashion, giving new designers and tastemakers the potential to broadcast to anyone, anywhere.

Now, some brands are pushing Instagram’s potential even further, with exclusive fashion shows, ‘Insta-shoots’, and behind-the-scenes access from the likes of DKNY and Misha Nonoo. This week, Saint Laurent finally joined Instagram (@YSL). When a brand helmed by someone as elusive as Hedi Slimane jumps on the social media bandwagon, it’s certainly a sign of the times.

Reported by Grace Howard

Decoded Fashion - Weekly Stories - Henry Holland
Image source: Visa Europe

It’s time to say “ta-ta” to the newly housed LFW! London Fashion Week felt refreshed in its new Soho location, with another wave of brands ensuring tech was embraced in the British fashion capital. So, who was killing it in the digital stakes this season?

Burberry’s Snap-Show

Given its track record of using tech to its advantage, it was little surprise that Burberry became the first brand to showcase its latest collection on Snapchat. Ahead of its S/S 16 show on Monday, the brand launched a featured Snapchat story that gave fans a preview of the collection on the app before it hit the runway, plus a look backstage. Models Cara Delevingne, Suki Waterhouse and Jourdan Dunn, as well as Burberry CEO Christopher Bailey, also featured in the Snapchat collection.

Hunter’s Periscope Headliners

British heritage brand Hunter opted to use Periscope in the build-up to its S/S 16 Hunter Original show. The Twitter-owned, live video-streaming app gave Hunter the opportunity to showcase the bands lined up to play at the event – including Fear of Men and Tropics – before it began, as well as some behind-the-scenes action.

It wasn’t all done with existing Hunter fans in mind, though – the brand’s creative director Alasdhair Willis told Wonderland Magazine he hoped to reach “a broader audience that might not traditionally engage with London Fashion Week”.

Topshop’s Pinterest Palettes

Clued into taking the power of fashion week beyond the catwalk, Topshop collaborated with Pinterest to create Pinterest Palettes – a collection of shoppable Pinterest boards that use technology to spot emerging colour trends on the runways.

Topshop.com customers can also use Pinterest Palettes to find their “colour DNA” by submitting one of their own Pinterest boards to the system; customers then receive personalised shopping recommendations from Topshop based on their colour preferences.

Pinterest Palettes will remain online for the duration of the remaining Fashion Weeks and will conclude on October 8.

Henry Holland’s Invisible Tech

In an interesting move, House of Holland partnered with Visa Europe Collab to create what Henry Holland dubbed “connected jewellery”. At the brand’s S/S 16 show on Saturday, costume rings embedded with NFC technology were given to VIP guests, enabling them to shop the collection directly from the front row.

When guests – including Alexa Chung and Daisy Lowe – decided they liked something on the catwalk, they could buy it instantly by sending out a signal through their jewellery. “For me, it was about making the technology invisible, so that the items are desirable pieces you’d want to wear regardless,” said Henry Holland.

IMG to Step Up London’s Tech Game

Finally, it has just been announced that IMG, the corporate brain behind many of New York Fashion Week’s best tech moments this season, has become a patron of the British Fashion Council. Expect to see bigger, better fashion-tech projects in future seasons at London Fashion Week.

Interested in who’s innovating at Fashion Week? Next month in New York, Decoded Fashion and W Magazine will launch the Fashion Futures Awards, celebrating talent across the fashion and technology industries. Find out more here.

Reported by Grace Howard


“One-hundred million users view up to four billion videos a day on Snapchat — and Burberry wants in on the action.”

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Decoded Fashion - Fashion Tech Daily - Burberry x Snapchat x NYFW

“If there are two non-fashion industries that Burberry has most clearly aligned itself with during Christopher Bailey’s tenure, they would be music and technology, the latter being a space in which the brand has prided itself on being an early adopter. At London Fashion Week a year ago, Burberry became the first fashion brand to test out Twitter’s buy button.”

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Decoded Fashion - Fashion Tech Daily - Burberry x Apple Music

“If there was a singular must-have item among the street style set last winter, it was the initialed, plaid Burberry poncho that first appeared on the British brand’s fall 2014 runway. After the piece made its debut, it was spotted on the likes of Cara Delevingne, Olivia Palermo, Suki Waterhouse and Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, and with celebrity placements as solid as these, it’s not surprising that the label saw a spike in sales in the months that followed.”

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Decoded Fashion - Fashion Tech Daily -  Burberry

Decoded Fashion - Weekly Stories - Gisele
Image source: AdWeek

Looking at the fashion retail landscape today, storytelling hasn’t been this fashionable since we were still being tucked into bed every night. Telling effective stories has become the key strategy for fashion brands, for whom it is now essential to negotiate the online and offline worlds with ease. Omnichannel success might mean approaching customers from all angles – digital marketing, social networking, data collection, in-store technology and point-of-sale innovation – but there’s little point if they don’t come together to tell a seamless story for your brand.

At our Autumn Milan Summit, taking place from 17-18 November, an expert panel including representatives from Mr Porter and La Repubblica will debate the art of effective storytelling. In the meantime, we take a look at the red-hot storytelling successes of the summer so far – where digital storytelling and real-life engagement are seamlessly combined for a (hopefully) happy ending.

Amazon Fashion

Once sniffed at by some in the industry, Amazon Fashion is demanding to be taken seriously as an e-tailer to be reckoned with. This summer heralded surprisingly high quarterly profits for the e-commerce giant, demonstrating that relative gambles like investing in its fashion business could be paying off.

After opening a massive photo studio in Williamsburg, Brooklyn in 2013, this summer has seen Amazon Fashion repeat the trick in London: the city’s own Amazon Fashion studio launched in Shoreditch last month. But more than an essential bricks-and-mortar powerhouse to build its fashion business – helping to create more than 500,000 images for its site every year, says Amazon – the company has leveraged the studio to emphasise the story it wants to tell.

If photos of cool girl Suki Waterhouse – the new face of Amazon Fashion – in the studio weren’t enough to convince you, the studio has already hosted a Fashion Forum event with Dazed & Confused magazine to inspire young people starting out in the industry.

Under Armour

Winner of a Cannes Lions award, the sports apparel brand Under Armour’s ‘I Will What I Want’ advertisement with supermodel Gisele Bundchen is surely the campaign of the summer.

Demonstrating an amazing use of the bad side of social media as well as the good, the video campaign sees Bundchen kicking and punching a large boxing bag with gusto. Meanwhile, real social media comments posted by the public in response to news of her signing days earlier, appear on the walls around her. Many are negative – “stick to modelling, sweetie” and “Gisele is sooooo fake” – while her workout demonstrates she has just as much right to be there as any sportswoman.

But it doesn’t just work on TV and YouTube – the campaign includes an immersive web experience, ‘Will Beats Noise’, that shows Gisele working out while real-time social commentary streams in. What’s more, the campaign has driven sales.

Catch Under Armour’s Vice President, Direct-To-Consumer, Digital, Sid Jatia speaking at our NYC Summit in October.

Burberry Snapchat & Periscope

Snapchat and Periscope offer huge scope for brands to tell unique stories that cut straight to the interested consumer on the move – but they can be difficult to negotiate. As usual, you can look to Burberry as an example of a brand that is doing the trend right.

Last month, it announced that its early moves on the apps have been a success, with a live fashion show beamed from LA and the promotion of its last menswear show through the two channels producing a record number of impressions: both topped 100 million for the first time.

You can book your ticket to the Milan Summit here.

Reported by Claire Healy

Decoded Fashion - Weekly Stories - Ralph Lauren Hybrid Flagship
Image source: Ralph Lauren’s VIP hybrid flagship, Milan

American luxury fashion brand Ralph Lauren is set to open an appointment-only concept store in Milan that will bring hospitality and retail under one roof – solidifying its stance as a full lifestyle brand. The store was conceived as a more immersive brand experience for its most premium shoppers.

Dubbed Milan Palazzo, the 11,840 sq ft flagship will open this September on high-end shopping street Via San Barnaba in the centre of the city, occupying a former private townhouse built in 1941. It will retain many of the building’s architectural features, including the original fireplaces, while the interiors will be decorated with soft furnishings and furniture from the brand’s own Home collection.

On arriving for a one-on-one consultation, guests will be invited to have lunch or drinks on the spacious terrace or in the salon area of the building. From there, staff will present a curated selection of items from the brand’s womenswear and high-end menswear Purple Label collections – and, on occasion, exclusive pieces debuted during New York Fashion Week, just days after the shows. The store will also offer a number of complimentary services including alterations, customised accessories, and made-to-measure suits for men and tailoring for women.

In a similar, albeit much less exclusive version of luxury-focused, mixed-purpose retailing, Burberry has unveiled a two-storey café in its recently extended store on London’s Regent Street. Dubbed Thomas’s in homage to the brand’s founder Thomas Burberry, the cafe operates seven days a week and focuses on British classics with an upmarket twist, such as Mersea rock oysters and lobster and chips. The space also houses a gifting area comprising the British brand’s travel, homeware and stationery lines, and a personalised monogramming service.

According to the brand’s chief creative officer Christopher Bailey, the space was conceived to let consumers “enjoy the world of Burberry in a more social environment”.

Ralph Lauren and Burberry are the latest in a growing number of luxury brands endeavouring to broaden their appeal by incorporating hospitality experiences, including British menswear brand Alfred Dunhill, Italian fashion label Roberto Cavalli and Ralph Lauren’s own café concept, Ralph’s Coffee.

Guest post Stylus.com by Samantha Fox


“In the West Yorkshire town of Castleford, England, pop. 39,192, there is a long, low Art Deco building that bears the rubric “Made in Yorkshire” above its front door. The bright, anonymous structure gives nothing away, but inside is where Burberry makes its check-lined trench coats—an item that ranks with Hermès scarves, Gucci loafers and Vuitton bags as a style classic.”

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Decoded Fashion - Fashion Tech Daily -  Christopher Bailey x Burberry


Image source: www.laststyleofdefense.com

For anyone in doubt that London menswear has truly come of age in 2015, then the confident outings at LC:M this week proved the case. Moreover, the facts and figures demonstrate that the swagger isn’t just for show: menswear sales have grown almost 5% in the last year, and style forecasters are estimating that the men’s fashion market will grow by 27% between 2013 and 2018 to reach £16.4 billion (Mintel, 2014). Moreover, the week saw many digital firsts at presentations and on the runway – demonstrating a focus on innovation that can only add to the witty, inventive and desirable men’s fashion on show.

Bringing the runway experience straight to the customer was as much an emphasis at LC:M as it has increasingly become in women’s ready-to-wear in recent seasons – with both established brands and more under-the-radar designers employing live streaming and social media to increase exposure. Tapping into an increasingly online-shopping savvy male customer, Burberry not only live-streamed its AW15 outing on Monday, but allowed customers to order clothes online immediately afterwards. Danish menswear brand Soulland went one step further, creating a specially designed app that attendees could download immediately: allowing them to film the models, and providing exclusive content to be shared on social media platforms.

No ticket was required at the Pop Up at No. 9 – a temporary menswear shop in Seven Dials featuring a range of different brands curated by BBSC’s Daniel Peters. In collaboration with The Dandy Lab, the store environment brought the online world seamlessly into the offline, with interactive digital plinths and smart mannequins giving visitors a glimpse of what could become the norm in our stores.

Wearables also featured on the runways of LC:M. London upstarts Ada + Nik have always been known for their punk take on technical fabrics, but this week saw a hotly-anticipated first: the unveiling of the ‘Narrative jacket’, the world’s first leather jacket with an in-built camera. Teaming up with Narrative Clip – who have been producing wearable cameras since 2012 – the jacket captures images and location data without any conscious interaction. Oh, and it resembles a totally good-looking biker jacket – as opposed to a cyborgian gimmick that no respectable East Londoner would be seen dead in.

In order to assess LC:M’s digital strategy from head to toe, however, one shouldn’t forget the all-important hairdo. ‘The Fudge Fix’ – not to be confused with a delicious-sounding Vancouver eatery (“as much fudge as you can eat!”) ­– was Fudge Professional’s pop-up salon, where guests could capture their hair looks in an interactive photo booth to share on their social channels. Mmmm, #FudgeFix.

Reported by Claire Healy


“Burberry followers can tweet requests for advice under the #BurberryGifts hashtag, which will be monitored by the fashion brand’s customer service staff 24 hours a day. They will then reply to individual users with personalised suggestions. It isn’t clear whether Burberry will respond publicly or via a direct message.”

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Decoded Fashion - Fashion Tech Daily - Burberrygifts
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