There was a healthy dose of optimism in London last night as the industry’s leading fashion and tech names gathered to celebrate this year’s Fashion Futures Awards.
“What fashion and tech have in common is they’re both about the future,” said host Angela Scanlon, as she opened the Decoded Fashion evening in partnership with the British Fashion Council.
Big winners during the night included Snapchat, which walked away with the tech visionary award for the fact it’s giving fashion brands new ways to infuse storytelling into their marketing. And Grindr, which picked up the Beyond the Runway title, for its collaboration with JW Anderson in January 2016, which saw it live stream the brand’s menswear show to its audience of predominantly gay men. The judges crowned the collaboration’s “out of the box thinking” and focus on brilliantly connecting consumers in the moments that matter.
Burberry was also celebrated – winning the fashion visionary award for the way in which it has helped make the idea of “disruption” more of a norm in the industry. That came in spite of the fact it’s operating in increasingly tough market conditions; announcing adjusted pre-tax profits were down 10% for the year to March 31, just yesterday morning.
Other brands with prizes included ASOS in the Killer Experience category for its new A-list loyalty programme, and Sephora in Bytes and Bricks, for its high-tech concept Flash store in Paris.
The awards are as much about those daring to innovate on the brand side, as it is about the tech founders that have created the best new tools that allow them to do so. On that basis, digital knitwear start-up Unmade won for its collaboration with designer Christopher Raeburn, for instance, while personal stylist site Thread won in the Real-Time Innovator category for its application of artificial intelligence alongside human insight to provide a particularly unique and forward-thinking proposition for menswear.
Meanwhile, delivery start-up Parcel for Me walked away with two awards – one for being the Master of Mobile and the other as this year’s Game Changer: the entrant considered most likely to disrupt fashion and retail in the future.
Other winners in the start-up space included Semaine, a content meets commerce platform taking home the New e-Store on the Block title, and custom footwear line Myswear, which scooped up the Big Idea award.