The Future of Clothes Shopping: Augmented Reality Stores

Augmented Reality Stores

Augmented reality fashion platform Zero10 collaborated with creative consultancy Crosby Studios to implement the first physical store that could only sell digital garments created by independent fashion brands and designers. It was the first experience where, entering a physical location, augmented reality could be experienced, generating in visitors a kind of entrance to the metaverse but without mediating a screen, that is, in the real world.

The venue, designed as a pop-up store, operated for a week in the New York neighborhood of SoHo as part of New York Fashion Week in September of this year. During the experience, guests were allowed to digitally try on a selection of outfits in fitting rooms that emulated the same metaverse aesthetic.

This experience has nothing to do with the progress that the big brands in the metaverse world have had for months, such as Gucci. The Italian house inaugurated the city of Gucci Town, in Roblox, where it offers a set of performances and immersive experiences that are updated regularly. If you want to know what it is about, you can experience it in the following video:

How the store workedzero10

“What was sought with the experience is to close the gap between the real and the virtual world. Instead of directly replacing physical spaces with brands, #phygital solutions were offered, which integrate bundled purchases to give customers access to a broader choice,” says Danisa Bevcic, image consultant and creator of Presencia Nova.

The façade of the premises was designed with columns painted with gray and white checks to suggest the integration of the physical and the virtual. The space itself was decorated in vibrant neon green and cool gray colors in pixelated patterns to mimic the retro video game aesthetic. “The color is not casual, that tone is closely linked to sustainability, nature, well-being, and also to opulence, the dollar,” explains Bevcic. 

Another fact that the specialist highlighted is that the store did not have objects from the real world: no boxes, lamps, rugs, decorative furniture, shelves for clothes, or hangers. “This is a model that also promotes inclusion because in this digital world, there are no size problems, clothes fit everyone,” she adds.

Visitors entered the space into an all-white antechamber that led to a hallway covered in a pattern of fluorescent pixels and plaid typical of Crosby Studios designs.

Once inside, visitors could enter changing rooms where they had to download an application beforehand to try on clothes. This allowed them, after scanning the QRs scattered around the room, to point the phone at themselves in the mirror and see how the clothes would look on them or someone else. “The most curious thing is that the clothes had movement,” adds Bevcic, who participated with a live experience in the event on business of the future organized by LA NACION this month.

The virtual collection consisted of five shiny, futuristic pieces that changed in size based on the wearer’s body type. Three of the pieces were free and could be saved in the app’s digital lockers. The collection is currently available exclusively through the Zero10 platform.

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Bet on Digital Fashion in Augmented Reality

The advancement of digital fashion is in line with the codes of the increasingly sustainable new world. It must be borne in mind that fashion is the second most polluting industry in the world after oil, according to data from the United Nations.

In numbers, the textile industry produces more than 8% of greenhouse gases and 20% of wastewater per year, in addition to the fact that 85% of textiles end up in landfills or are incinerated despite being in good condition. Another interesting statistic is that textile waste is thought to blanket more than 300 hectares of Chile’s Atacama Desert.

On the other hand, according to the European Parliament, approximately 2,700 liters of water are needed to make a T-shirt, “enough drinking water for one person for two and a half years”.

Fortunately, new trends such as digitization will help build an increasingly sustainable world.

Users may now purchase intangible clothes and “wear” them using augmented reality thanks to it. These garments also began to cross the barrier of video games and are being seen in parades or changing rooms of the metaverse.

Last June, Mark Zuckerberg’s company launched the Meta Avatars Store, its first official virtual clothing store for avatars. The first to join were luxury brands such as Balenciaga, Prada, and Thom Browne. Now also integrated is the fashion brand DRESSX, which exclusively designs digital garments and is the largest store of its kind in the world.

The first DRESSX x Meta collection went on sale in July and more looks are expected to be released regularly. In addition to dressing the avatars of Facebook, Instagram, and Messenger, some items from the collection will also be available in the brand’s online store.

Everything indicates that the fashion industry is committed to digital, and it seems that this new augmented reality is here to stay.

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