Virtual reality’s quiet presence at #NYFW

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The promise of virtual reality seems to have hit New York Fashion Week, albeit it in a very quiet, non-obtrusive way.

Placed subtly at the end of a story in WWD today, Rebecca Minkoff CEO, Uri Minkoff, revealed the brand filmed its show on Friday fit for a future VR experience. It reportedly employed two cameras with three-dozen separate lenses to create footage that will be released in a few months’ time.

It did so with Jaunt, a company that has worked with the likes of Paul McCartney on immersive virtual reality experiences thanks to its 360-degree, stereoscopic 3-D cameras and 3-D sound-field microphones. The result will see the Rebecca Minkoff show available to watch through Jaunt’s app on Google Play (for Android phones), on Samsung’s Gear VR, Oculus Rift, and on the Google Cardboard platform for iOS, later this spring.

Minkoff said virtual reality as a buzzword is still six to 12 months out, but he believes this method of filming will “extend the show experience and depict the runway in a manner that a traditional live stream never could”.

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Today, similar plans also seemed to be underway at Tommy Hilfiger. At the end of its show at the Park Avenue Armory, my colleague and I stumbled across a 360-degree camera being placed in the centre of the football stadium-themed set (as pictured just above).

The company behind it was WeMakeVR, an Amsterdam-based business that, put simply, does indeed make photorealistic VR experiences for headsets such as the Oculus Rift. They had been filming throughout the show too of course. They also had a prototype Samsung Gear VR headset on hand to try, as I am pictured wearing (and enjoying) at the top of this post.

Though no one from Tommy was available for comment, it is understood an immersive catwalk experience will be released “very soon”.

[By the way, if you’re a WGSN subscriber, we just published a great piece on the opportunity for fashion brands and retailers with virtual reality. It’s worth checking out]