2 September 2022
Author: The Future Laboratory
New York – A new experiential retail concept from AR fashion platform ZERO10 and Crosby Studios is bringing digital fashion into a physical setting. Visitors to the pop-up store can scan QR codes using an app to try on digital-only clothes in real time using their smartphones, with ZERO10’s augmented reality technology also allowing them to digitally tailor the garments by uploading a picture.
Designed by Crosby Studios, the collection celebrates its digital nature with fantastical garments that could only exist in virtual reality. Inspired by 90s video games, pieces include a chequered suit, light shirt, pixel leopard hoodie, disappearing pants and video game pants. The store setting itself is designed to allow visitors to freely interact with the digital fashion without being interrupted by physical objects. ‘We wanted to create a new concept of pop-up spaces responding to retailers’ needs to attract a new generation of consumers but also evolving the format of pop-ups that are not about product display any longer,’ explains George Yashin, CEO of ZERO10.
The pop-up showcases how, as the physical and digital worlds continue to merge, retailers can continue to innovate with Hyperphysical Stores that allow both to co-exist and provide a compelling reason to visit in person.
US – Sportswear company Adidas has teamed up with speaker brand Zound to release a pair of headphones that can be charged using sunshine and artificial light. The RPT-02 SOL headphones have a headband made of Powerfoyle, a solar-cell fabric that converts sunshine and artificial light into power.
Although the ideal source of energy for the headphones is natural sunlight, the photovoltaic material can also be powered by ordinary bulbs and lights. Even on overcast days, the Powerfoyle can collect energy from imperceptible UV rays that pass through clouds, unlike many other photovoltaic materials on the market that can only do so when exposed to direct sunlight. On full charge, the headphones can play music for up to 80 hours.
Such portable devices represent new directions for the renewable energy market, demonstrating how clean energy harvesting can begin at home or on the go.
US – Pickleball is now one of the fastest growing sports in America and fashion company J Crew is taking notice. The brand is partnering with Texan pickleball specialist Recess to release paddles in J Crew’s signature patterns and activewear for the wildly popular game.
In addition to paddles, the collection includes tennis skirts, high-rise leggings, dresses and sports bras, with prices ranging from £29.50 ($34.50, €35.50) to £101 ($118, €118). The clothing company made the decision to enter the growing pickleball market after noticing that the sport was trending on social medial and that J Crew customers were participating in the game.
‘We love it when J Crew customers become our inspiration and show us what they’re up to on social media. Pickleball has been trending on social media and within our audiences, and as one of the fastest-growing sports in America right now, we had to get involved,’ says Lisa Greenwald, chief merchandising officer of J Crew.
By analysing social media activity to develop new products, J Crew is showing how consumer data can inspire clothing for Sportive Affluents.
UK – Completing a metamorphosis from the hard-partying face of 1990s fashion excess to four years sober yoga enthusiast, Kate Moss has announced the arrival of a new wellness brand, Cosmoss. With a strong emphasis on self-care and restorative ingredients, initial products will include detox tea, CBD face oil, eau de parfum and a face cream.
Rather than completely shy away from Moss’s past, the brand’s storytelling focuses on the supermodel’s journey, positioning the new launch as a product of the process of self-acceptance. Calming tones and relaxed, naturalistic imagery emphasise feelings of balance and restoration. The Cosmoss Instagram page has attracted over 30,000 followers before the brand has even been launched, testament to Moss’s enduring star power.
‘Cosmoss draws on the extraordinary life experience of Kate Moss – ready to share her journey of self-acceptance and freely be herself. Each Cosmoss product has been meticulously crafted with wellbeing in mind, using potent, natural substances,’ reads one Instagram post from the brand.
The transformation taps into a wider shift in consumer mindsets towards Enlightened States, where inward-facing personal progress and self-discovery are prioritised over status and spectacle.
US – BLK, a dating and lifestyle app for Black singles, has launched its Break the Bank campaign to boost financial literacy and help combat inflation. Created in partnership with networking collective The Gathering Spot, the initiative coincides with Black Business Month and will also include a contest giving away gift cards to fund dates at Black-owned businesses.
In a recent survey, BLK found that 69% of Black singles say the rising cost of living is affecting their dating and social lives, with 66% saying they are taking longer to get to know someone online before embarking on a first date. ‘Our Break the Bank initiative will not only allow us to bring people together to build meaningful connections, but it also gives us an opportunity to support Black-owned businesses in our community. It’s truly a win-win situation,’ says Jonathan Kirkland, head of brand and marketing for BLK.
With the cost of living crisis deepening existing racial inequalities, Affirmative Banking disruptors that cater for the needs of marginalised groups are rallying around their communities and building deep loyalty based on mutual trust and understanding.
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