Editor's pick product

Heist uses crowdsourced data to launch inclusive line of tights

Heist Studios
Heist Studios

Heist Studios has announced the release of five new tights in a variety of nude shades as a result of crowdsourced data from over 1,000 women. The new additions will add five new shades to Heist’s current line of nude tights when released later this week.

The diverse colour palette was sourced from “The Nude Project”, a crowdsourcing effort for which Heist created a dedicated microsite where it is asking women globally to share their own unique “nude” skin tones. Launched back in 2017, the project aims to create an ongoing range that reflects the needs of its audience accurately, says the brand.

“We know from our customers that women shy away from wearing nude garments for the most part because, with only a limited range of shades on offer, they are unable to find a suitable match,” says Heist. “We saw the furore around Meghan Markle’s tights at her first royal engagement as Duchess of Sussex, with the press lambasting the shade of nude. Our extended range seeks to solve this problem.”

Heist Studios
Heist Studios

The new range will be available to purchase from July 30 in the UK market in sizes ranging 4 to 14, while an extended sizing range from 16 to 24 will be released in October.

By launching the range in a wider variety of both shades and sizing, Heist continues to make strides towards inclusivity and diversity, which have been at the core of its DNA since inception. Additionally, reflecting its consumers’ voices in both product and advertising allows the brand to remain a strongly authentic voice in the market.

The strategy has allowed the UK-based company to quickly position itself as a true disruptor in both direct-to-consumer retail and the hosiery category itself, as CEO Toby Darbyshire told us on TheCurrent Innovators podcast in April. 

Editor's pick product

Moncler announces death of catwalk, introducing co-created monthly collections

Moncler Pierpaolo Piccioli AW18 collection milan fashion week
Moncler Pierpaolo Piccioli AW18

Moncler kicked off Milan Fashion Week with the announcement of its “Genius” series, a co-created collection with big name partners and a new way of presenting.

“The concept of the catwalk show doesn’t exist anymore for us, it’s a new way of working from now on,” chairman & CEO, Remo Ruffini, told reporters at the venue.

Launching as a six day-long event at a warehouse in Milan, the series aims to respond to consumer demand to access fashion at a quicker pace by launching monthly collaborations available in the see-now-by-now model.

The seven inaugural collaborations include Valentino’s Pierpaolo Piccioli, British designer Simone Rocha, Kei Nimoiya (designer of Noir) and Craig Green. The new strategy will replace the Gamme Bleu and Gamme Rouge collections, which used to be designed by Thom Browne and Giambattista Valli, respectively.

At the Milan presentation, all seven collections were displayed in individual rooms, which allowed the chosen designer to create their own immersive experience. According to the brand, the Moncler Genius Building allowed for each different room to be devoted to a singular mind, which adds facets to the brand’s identity.

In Piccioli’s room, for instance, the designer worked with artist Sidival Fila to display artwork he believed linked to the sense of purity he infused in his collection.

For the following five days after the launch, the collections will be sold exclusively by a selected partner online retailer, before reaching wholesalers. At Moncler stores, each collection will have a month of focus from June onwards, with additional pop-ups launching from October onwards, according to the Business of Fashion.

Moncler Noir - Kei Ninomiya FW18
Moncler Noir – Kei Ninomiya FW18
Editor's pick social media Startups technology

Menswear label Ada + Nik uses Vyclone app for collaborative runway video during #LCM


Live streamed fashion week shows are an interesting one – buzzworthy and exciting when they first launched despite poor user experience, now higher quality but still a proposition that require decent investment to make them stand out.

As previously reported for Mashable, while some show organisers have this cost rolled in to their packages, for those doing it independently, I was quoted in the region of $20,000 to $50,000 for a full video deal, depending on the production requirements. And on average that’s for just 14,000 views per show at the likes of Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week in New York.

Which is why a free app called Vyclone is an interesting opportunity, especially for young up-and-coming brands who are in the early stages of being on the fashion week circuit. This start-up refers to itself as “a social video platform that lets you co-create, sync and edit multiple views of a shared moment, effortlessly”.

Enter then menswear brand Ada + Nik who showed at London Collections: Men last week, simultaneously capturing the experience of their spring/summer 2015 collection in real-time from multiple different camera angles using Vyclone. The resulting video isn’t the highest quality, but for an immediate piece of (free) content shot by five individuals with iPhones it’s one of the most efficient options we’ve seen. The collaboration was pulled together by digital consultant Taylor Kahan.

Check out the video here, and then read on below where we chat with NIk Thakkar, co-creative director for Ada + Nik, to find out more:

F&M: What was the benefit of choosing Vyvlone over the traditional live-stream option, other than the inevitable cost saving? 

NT: Innovation and interactivity. We wanted to engage a technology that is new and exciting for the fashion world, and put the live perspective at the vantage points of the audience actually attending the show. That way, instead of seeing one stagnant angle that is typical of live streams, viewers online got a more realistic idea of what it felt like to be at the show.

F&M: What’s the process involved with achieving what you did with the app? 

NT: We strategically placed five people around the runway to film and capture all of the most flattering angles of our pieces as the models walked the runway. The process of filming is simple: Vyclone is programmed to detect location so that anyone filming from the app in the same vicinity will have their videos automatically synced with others around them.

Is your resulting video a real-time replica or an edited version post show? 

NT: Real-time. The beauty of Vyclone’s technology is that it detects and automatically syncs all videos together based on sound.

F&M: Where does the video appear?

NT: Once processed the video is immediately viewable on the Vyclone app, which we then shared across our own social properties, as did Vyclone respectively on theirs. The video is embeddable and shareable to the public, so we now have an evergreen piece of marketing content that can spread on its own, and the beauty of social media has made it a potentially virally impactful takeaway from our show.

F&M: What sort of engagement does the platform enable? 

NT: The appeal of Vyclone is that anyone in the vicinity can participate, film from their perspective, and effortlessly contribute their video to the final mix. And once the video has been created within the app, anybody can go in and “remix” the angles to create their own favourite version of the show as well. The clip was featured within the app so all of its active users had a chance to view, and by sharing across our socials we’ve managed to garner hundreds of thousands of impressions on the piece.

e-commerce Startups

Start-up spotlight: Stylyt


Greater consumer participation in today’s brands is a trend that shows no sign of abating. In fashion of course, that’s a huge opportunity, meaning it comes as no surprise to hear there are a number of start-ups exploring the co-creation space. Stylyt, is one such example, a brand new launch that stands out for the fact it’s already working with known designers like Timo Weiland in its offering to consumers.

Founded by Nina Cherny and Jenny Wu, this “collaborative design” site enables its members to explore certain design templates offered from the upcoming collections of designers like Weiland, and customise their colour, print or fabric.

Better yet, however, they can also then potentially own them. Everyone’s submitted designs are pitched against each other in a series of galleries online (as pictured below) from which they can be voted for by the community. The ‘winning’ style from each collection is then made into limited edition pieces and sold exclusively on the Stylyt site.

As the tagline reads: “Play fashion designer for your favourite brands.”

Weiland for instance is offering up a basic backpack shape (as pictured), to which users can adjust the colour of the canvas, the colour of the leather straps and flaps, and even the colour of the ponyskin on the front pocket.

Alongside Weiland’s bags so far, are also summer dresses by Lovers+Friends, wallets and clutch bags by Hayden-Harnett and a series of dresses and tops by Torn by Ronny Kobo. New collaborations are set to open every week.

“By giving consumers a voice in the creative process, brands get to promote their collection to fans who feel involved and appreciated, leading to higher loyalty and meaningful sales,” said Wu.

I chatted to her to find out a bit more information:

How did you establish the relationships you have with each of the designers?

“Our fantastic brand partners either come through our industry connections or traditional routes, such as trade shows and showroom visits. These digitally-savvy, forward-thinking brands understand that by embracing customer input, they can gain loyal customers for life. Timo Weiland, one of our anchor brands, is quoted in our press release as saying ‘We’re obsessed with the technology behind [Stylyt], so this will be a great exercise for us’.”

Customisation often gets complicated once it comes to the manufacturing side. How are you handling this?

“Once winners go on sale, we place a custom wholesale order with each brand. We act as any other e-tailer here, except we sell exclusive, limited-edition pieces from the brand’s upcoming collection. The brands love this because we are not discounting past season’s merchandise, so we’re not diluting their brand.”

Such a system must also provide you with a lot of data. Might this be used to help inform design in the long-run?

“After each collaborations ends, we provide brands with campaign metrics that include trend data from our designs and voting results. For example, we’ll be able to show which colors or combinations were the most popular with which demographic, etc. Our voting model is set up in a way to detect trend patterns over time.”

What are your long-terms plans for scaling?

“We see Stylyt as THE platform for branded collaborations. We plan to expand to new verticals that are design-driven (i.e. home decor, beauty), as well as increase the scale of our collaborations. Soon, you’ll see entire capsule collections designed on Stylyt, or perhaps see Stylyt powering the next fashion reality show. Either way, we’re enabling brands and consumers to connect more directly, a trend that shows no signs of slowing down!”




e-commerce film social media

Social content fuels H&M’s & Other Stories launch success

If you haven’t already noticed, H&M’s new brand & Other Stories has been doing a phenomenal job of using social media to seed its launch. I first wrote about them doing so here, when content across YouTube, Tumblr, Facebook and more was being teased before much was known about the line at all. The same continued as stores opened in three European cities (including London), and its e-commerce website – also heavy with shareable content – launched just this month. The reception was reportedly “tremendous”.

In a report released today, CEO Karl-Johan Persson said: “Sales, both in stores and online, have far exceeded our high expectations… This opens the possibility that & Other Stories can expand more widely and faster than we originally planned.”

Also unveiled today was another piece of shareable content; this time one tapping into the idea of collaboration. A short film called Co-Creatives (another nice social term there), shows the personal stories of “friends” of the brand including Julia Sarr-Jamois, Valentine Fillol Cordier, Ada Kokosar and Bea Åkerlund as they style their favourite looks from the collection.

Each of them was armed with a Polaroid camera and tasked with capturing their inspirations as they went. It’s a simple short spot, but another great example of how well this team seems to know it’s consumer base…

digital snippets mobile social media technology Uncategorized

Digital snippets: Burberry, Uniqlo, Jaeger, Rebecca Minkoff, Reebok, Asos, Target

Some more great stories from around the web surrounding all things fashion and digital over the past week:

  • Burberry fetes digital at Chicago flagship opening (as pictured) [Mashable]
  • Uniqlo partners with GIF artists for holiday campaign [PSFK]
  • Jaeger’s new website let down by drab colour scheme [Econsultancy]
  • Rebecca Minkoff unveils new site [WWD]
  • Reebok edits and refines its social media footprint [AdAge]
  • Asos maintains heady rate of sales growth, Q1 up 30% to £165.8m [Reuters]
  • Target CMO: content and mobile matters more than campaigns [BrandChannel]
  • How eBay became a fast-fashion graveyard [The Cut]
  • Five years in and profitable, Gilt refocuses on new leadership, an IPO in 2013 and more [TechCrunch]