Paris Fashion Week 2022 consisted of 64 shows and 42 shows, many of which showed the future of fashion. From the airbrushed dress that supermodel Bella Hadid wore at the Coperni show to the fresh, upcycled looks made up of recycled clothing, Paris Fashion Week brilliantly highlighted the upcoming seasons’ trends.
While the majority of Fashion Week attendees and designers celebrated the physical elements—such as in-person fashion shows and tangible designs—a few creatives incorporated Web3 features to show fashion’s vast digital potential.
Web3 democratizes fashion
Highlighting this, Victor Winsanto, a French designer who launched his label in 2020 after spending two years working with famed Jean-Paul Gaultier, told Cointelegraph that virtual worlds allow creators to design without having to use real fabrics and materials. “In a sense, this ensures sustainability, even though a lot of energy and time has been used to create such collections,” he said.
Weinsanto revealed his first digital collection, M3talove, right after his fashion show in Paris’ Marais district on September 26. In contrast to traditional Fashion Week experiences, M3talove’s collection was shown as 3D holograms within a series of glass boxes housed in a darkened room outfitted with bright lights and a DJ. Such a setup seemed fitting, as the group was a collaboration between Weinsanto and K-pop girl band Lightsum.
“M3talove” group by Weinsanto and BNV. Source: BNV
Richard Hobbs, founder and COO of Brand New Vision (BNV) — the Web3 platform behind M3talove — told Cointelegraph that the idea for this group was inspired by the possibilities of merging K-pop culture with fashion.
“This was a collaborative experience, with Victor presenting his concepts to each of the eight Lightsum members, who then provided their feedback and suggestions before BNV turned the sketches into digital outfits, along with individual avatars customized for the eight girls.”
Winsanto added that the M3talove group was one of the best ways to use Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs) to show the collaboration between music, the Metaverse, and fashion. “I wanted a collection that was wearable but still had details that would be impossible to incorporate in real life.”
Going beyond realistic concepts is one of the most important features that Web3 Fashion has to offer. Hobbs has noted that M3talove is an entirely digital group, stating that this allows for more creative concepts, along with sustainability.
“BNV’s business is digital fashion. If people can wear more virtual products and express themselves in this world while consuming less in the real world, that’s probably a good thing.” Hobbs makes an important point, as it was previously reported that New York Fashion Week emits up to 48,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide.
French luxury fashion house Balmain also showed off its Web3 presence at Paris Fashion Week this year. Balmain introduced “Balmain Thread,” the brand’s XRP Ledger-powered Web3 hub designed to unite their community with NFT projects. Txampi Diz, Balmain’s chief marketing officer, told Cointelegraph that Olivier Rousteing — who’s been the house’s creative director since 2011 — along with the entire Balmain team have become acutely aware of the need to democratize fashion. According to Des, this led to the creation of Balmain’s thread. He said:
We stress the need to open up fashion and democratize a previously closed world. We knew we had to present Balmain Thread during Balmain’s annual Festival, a celebration that blends our runway show for Paris Fashion Week with a one-of-a-kind live concert streamed live on Balmain.com.”
Crowds gather at Balmain’s “Mint The Moment” during Paris Fashion Week. Source: Balmain
Dees explained that attendees of the Balmain Festival had the opportunity to join the Balmain Thread community when they secured their tickets. He added that those broadcasting the festival have been provided with links to join Balmain.com. “All attendees of the festival evening were invited to join in by launching ‘The Moment’, a mobile photo experience app powered by MintNFT that allows participants to transform their favorite Balmain Festival moments into their own unique fashion NFT.”
While innovative, Dez noted that the ultimate goal behind Balmain Thread is to ensure new forms of communication with the brand’s followers while also providing access to those who haven’t been to Paris Fashion Week before. He explained:
Inclusion is a keyword in fashion, because we all know that the old vision of exclusivity and closed experiences is not feasible for the new generation of fashionistas. Web3 is one of the many interesting new tools that allow us to open up our world