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Digital snippets: Dolce & Gabbana’s #selfies, Burberry’s Apple Music channel; NFC payments at House of Holland

Here’s a round-up of the latest stories to know about surrounding all things fashion and tech…


  • Dolce & Gabbana models post selfies straight off the runway (as pictured) [Vogue]
  • Burberry becomes first fashion brand to launch Apple Music channel [BoF/Bloomberg]
  • It might seem like a gimmick, but here’s why Henry Holland’s NFC payment ring matters [Forbes]
  • Intel unveils RFID system for retailers, Levi Strauss pilots [RFID Journal]
  • DKNY gets personal for New York Fashion Week with Instagram Direct campaign [AdAge]
  • H&M releases film featuring David Beckham and American comedian Kevin Hart [Brand Republic]
  • Robots, holograms and wearables: A tech history of fashion week [Fashionista]
  • Snapchat and Uber: How outsiders got into NYFW events [Digiday]
  • The best of tech at London Fashion Week [Forbes]
  • New York Fashion Week’s social media winners and losers [Digiday]
  • Why fashion model Karlie Kloss launched her own YouTube channel [Co.Create]
  • Vogue goes viral [FT]
  • Google’s Eric Schmidt on how artificial intelligence could shape fashion trends [WWD]
  • Can ‘smart malls’ save China’s failing shopping centres from collapse? [The Guardian]
  • ‘A lot of guff is talked about personalisation’, says boss John Roberts [Retail Week]
  • The invisible labour of fashion blogging [The Atlantic]
digital snippets e-commerce film mobile social media Startups technology

Digital snippets: Asos launches podcast, Burberry’s success on Periscope, Jet hits $1m in first-day sales

A round-up of the latest stories to know about surrounding all things fashion and tech…


  • Asos launches weekly podcast in customer engagement push [Retail Week]
  • Burberry’s Snapchat and Periscope campaigns deliver a record 100m impressions [The Drum]
  • Jet, the new Amazon competitor, hits $1 million in sales on launch day [re/code]
  • Forever 21 launches Instagram-powered thread screen [DigitalBuzzBlog]
  • Nordstrom is making it simple to buy via text message [NRF]
  • Birchbox’s monthly deliveries will give virtual reality a fascinating test run [AdWeek]
  • Katy Perry, Coty launch perfume line with Twitter pop-up shop [AdAge]
  • Victoria’s Secret chatting app ensures instantaneous customer satisfaction [PSFK]
  • LVMH to launch Apple Watch rival [Reuters]
  • Amazon will be the number one US clothing retailer very soon [Bloomberg]
  • Old Navy follows viral hit with another back-to-school music video [AdAge]
  • Rakuten buys virtual fitting room start-up Fits.Me in a fashion commerce play [TechCrunch]
  • E-commerce start-up Tinker Tailor shuts down operations [Fashion Times]
  • Personal shopping app Scratch launches with $3.6 million in funding [Fashionista]
  • Battle of the buy buttons: What does the social commerce hybrid mean for retail brands? [The Drum]
  • The surprising way smartphones are changing the way we shop [The Washington Post]
  • Malte Huffmann of Dafiti on cracking fashion e-commerce in Latin America [BoF]
  • Fashion’s biological future is now [Huffington Post]
  • Programmable clothes are going commercial []
  • Apple Watch sales: what we know (and don’t know) [WSJ]
  • Pebble boss: ‘one day, people will not be able to live without their smartwatch’ [The Guardian]
  • Does Ringly have a place in an Apple Watch world? [TechCrunch]
  • Vogue launches Alexa Chung fashion documentary series, crowdsources questions [Vogue]
  • 10 retailer blogs that are genuinely worth reading [Econsultancy]
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Digital snippets: Yoox, Net-a-Porter, Farfetch, Lord & Taylor, Burberry, Nasty Gal, Nike

A round-up of the latest stories to know about surrounding all things fashion and tech…


  • The Yoox and Net-a-Porter merger is creating a tech giant as much as a fashion giant [Quartz]
  • Farfetch’s global platform play [BoF]
  • Did Lord & Taylor’s hot Instagram campaign thumb its nose at FTC disclosure rules? [AdWeek]
  • Burberry broadcasts ‘London in L.A.’ show via Periscope [Creativity]
  • Nasty Gal’s uncertain future: does it have what it takes to stay on top? [Racked]
  • Nike’s latest addition to the “lady empowerment ad” genre is one of the most relatable [Fashionista]
  • Stuart Weitzman campaign starts with cool cinemagraphs on Instagram, then follows up on Facebook [AdWeek]
  • Neiman Marcus introduces new image recognition “Snap. Find. Shop” app [Haute Living]
  • How Old Navy is winning at YouTube [Digiday]
  • Old Navy and Banana Republic among first brands to use Instagram’s carousel ads and link to product page [AdAge]
  • Asos eyes emerging artists on Vevo to deepen ties to 20-somethings [The Drum]
  • Amazon quietly acquired Shoefitr to improve how it sells footwear online [TechCrunch]
  • Viral style: why are we obsessed? [BBC]
  • Fashion brands are ignoring the internet because the market hasn’t yet forced them to take action [BoF]
  • What can fashion learn from science? [i-D]
  • Digital beauty businesses aim for breakthrough [BoF]
  • Forget the Internet of Things, there is a digital revolution taking place in our shopping malls [Forbes]
  • If you text this phone number, a guy named Stefan will send you limited-edition clothes [Business Insider]
  • The RealReal raises $40 million to double sales in 2015 [Fashionista]
  • Fashion can win the wearables war [BoF]
  • Ad spend on smart watches estimated to reach nearly $70m by 2019 [The Drum]
  • Six retailers doing the most to make mobile part of the in-store experience [PSFK]
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2014: A designer meets digital year in review


What a year it has been for fashion and technology…

From wearables taking off with varying designer brands during fashion week, to the launch of new services like Apple Pay, the success of Alibaba’s IPO, discussion around visual search, the ongoing use of selfie campaigns and more, one thing after another has once again been making an impact in this space.

Below then, are 10 of the posts you loved the most on the relaunched F&M site this year. It’s an interesting exploration of subjects as varied as big data and viral videos, as well as the more gimmicky, yet PR-worthy role technology can often play. Think drones, Oculus Rift, the ALS #icebucketchallenge, and yet more on wearable tech.

Thank you for reading and see you in 2015!

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Asos, Topshop, Burberry, Net-a-Porter among fashion brands joining in ALS #icebucketchallenge


The big news yesterday was in Anna Wintour accepting the ALS #icebucketchallenge challenge from her daughter Bee Shaffer. The editor-in-chief of US Vogue posted a video of herself surrounded by family pouring a bucket of ice water over her head.

The move, if you haven’t yet seen this filling your Facebook, Twitter or Instagram feed, is part of a viral sensation that aims to raise money for Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) research. All around the world, individuals, celebrities and companies alike have helped generate a reported $41.8m in donations for the ALS Association so far. (The suggestion is you do the challenge or donate $100, with most people opting to do both).

Now we’ve noticed a raft of fashion brands getting involved too. Over the past 48 hours, we’ve seen teams from Asos, Topshop, Net-a-Porter and Burberry joining in the challenge, with employees tipping ice water over themselves en masse and then sharing it with their social networks before nominating someone else to do the same.

Here are Asos, Topshop and Net-a-Porter:

Burberry’s meanwhile is typically creative, shot from above capturing multiple different team members individually thanks to stop motion (many wearing their trench coats of course), outside the company’s London HQ.

Next up from the fashion industry there are nominations currently out there for Mr Porter, Google Glass and Tom Ford. Diane von Furstenberg is another designer who’s done it recently, as has Victoria Beckham:

Update: Matthew Williamson has now followed suit, covered in ice by celebrity pal, Sienna Miller:

Let’s not forget why this is taking place mind you. This video is well worth the watch (skip to 1min59secs for the important bit) for some insight into what all the challenge actually means. Ever more reason to participate we’d say…

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Video: Net-a-Porter gives outgoing CEO send-off to remember


#Worldsmostlovedceo is the hashtag Net-a-Porter is using to say goodbye to its CEO of 11 years, Mark Sebba. That and a series of exotic dancers, steel drum players, Mariachi musicians, acrobats, a gospel choir and more.

The luxury e-tailer surprised Sebba on his final day at the office, with the entire staff lining the corridors holding placards featuring his face and applauding their boss as he was led past by a gentleman singing a cover of Aloe Blacc’s hit single, “The Man”.

Teams around the world including in New York and Hong Kong were also featured dancing to the tune, while an overwhelmed Sebba wandered his way through the company’s headquarters in Shepherd’s Bush, London, before being handed a cup of coffee at his desk by Natalie Massenet.

A film has been released of the event, as below. It’s a lovely example of company culture, not to mention the industry not taking itself too seriously. Let’s see how quickly it spreads.

H/T Daily Mail

Blocks film

Cannes Lions 2014 round-up: fashion and beauty winners


The biggest winner of the week at the 61st annual Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity (the ad industry’s version of the Oscars if you will), was arguably a fashion brand. Or a department store in fact. British retailer Harvey Nichols walked away with four of the grand prix awards, including in the integrated, film, press and the promo & activation categories, as well as gold Lions in direct and outdoor, another two in promo & activation again, and a silver and bronze in design.

Sorry I Spent it on Myself, as the campaign was called, was a push for Christmas 2013 that saw shoppers encouraged to buy expensive presents for themselves in place of for their loved ones. It was anchored by a gift collection comprised of a range of “ultra-low net worth” items, or tongue-in-cheek stocking-fillers as alternatives for those who have self-indulged. Think sink plugs, paperclips, even a bag of gravel. All very neatly packaged up of course.

Created by agency adam&eveDDB, it was launched with a print campaign as well as an amusing commercial online, in-store and in cinemas, which documents the reactions from those receiving the budget line of gifts.

Prasoon Joshi, jury president of the titanium and integrated categories referred to the initiative as “unapologetic, very confident, funny and charming – everything our profession is all about”. According to Harvey Nichols, 26,000 of the budget products sold out within three days, and overall the campaign helped the retailer have one of its best Christmas periods to date.

Here’s a highlight of some of the other big winners under the heading of fashion and beauty:

G-Star Raw: The grand prix in the first ever product design category at Cannes Lions went to G-Star for its Raw for the Oceans collection. This is a line made out of ocean plastics in partnership with Bionic Yarn and co-designed by Pharrell Williams. Initiatives that inspire change in the world, whether focused on the environment on gender equality, on protecting children and more, are unsurprisingly a regular feature on the winner lists at the festival, but it was impressive to see this travel over to product as well.

Wren: It was no surprise to see this LA-based clothing brand walk away with a prize for its First Kiss campaign. Shot by Tatia Pilieva, this three-and-a-half-minute spot documents 20 strangers making-out for the first time. It’s one of the major viral success stories of 2014 so far, garnering a huge 85 million views since launch, and reportedly increasing traffic to the Wren website by 14,000%, and upping sales in the online store by over 13,600% compared to the week before it launched. It also won a bronze in film craft.

adidas: A series of awards went to the D Rose Jump Store from adidas, including golds in design and outdoor and silver in PR and in branded content & entertainment. Created by TBWA London, this was a physical space designed to engage kids who have grown up on council estates in Hackney, rightly cynical, and often hostile, towards brands. It did so with NBA all-star and adidas athlete Derrick Rose – a relatively unknown name in the UK – placing him front and centre of a pop-up shop converted from a rundown community centre, where all the shoes were free. The challenge was to jump to reach them on the 10ft high shelves placed around the room. Rose is someone who has risen out of one of the most violent neighbourhoods in the US, therefore coming from a background that mirrored the kids being targeted. Over 2,500 of them turned up to watch the action, and the resulting film reached 370,000 in just five days.

Levi’s: As part of its Station to Station project for autumn/winter 2013/14, which saw a vintage train repurposed into a moving art studio travelling across the US, Levi’s decided to likewise reinvent a series of timeless tools.  “Iconic instruments of the past, [were] deconstructed and repurposed into 21st century social devices,” reads the write-up from agency AKQA. They included a 1901 Underwood typewriter tailor-made for Twitter, a 1956 Gibson guitar for Soundcloud, a 1932 Graflex camera for Instagram and more. The initiative won both silver and bronze Lions in the cyber category.  

Apotek Hjärtat: This Swedish pharmacy launched a new line of hair products under the name of Apolosophy in early 2014. It wanted to raise awareness and to encourage people to trial, so did so by demonstrating how it can bring your hair to life, by literally bringing an advertisement to life. ‘Blowing in the Wind’, as the campaign was called, saw sensors placed on digital screens in Stockholm subway station platforms. Every time a train arrived, the model’s hair would blow across her face. It won silver Lions in cyber and design, and a bronze in media.

John Lewis: Another Christmas 2013 department store winner from adam&eveDDB, was the Bear & Hare campaign for John Lewis. This won silver awards in film and film craft for its hand-animated spot featuring Lily Allen covering Keane’s Somewhere Only We Know, and a bronze in the titanium and integrated category. Check out all the details of the campaign in this earlier post.

Lacoste: Another silver film Lion was awarded to The Big leap, an arresting 60-second film depicting “a man about to risk it all to win the game of his life”. That leap is in the game of love, as demonstrated by actor Paul Hamy building up the courage to go in for a kiss with model Anna Brewster in one scene, while another (the metaphor) sees him leaping off the side of a building and falling towards the ground until their lips lock. The film was created by BETC and directed by Seb Edwards.

Other silver and bronze awards went to:

Nike Cricket for its Make Every Yard Count campaign in India
The Boobs campaign from Pacific Brands Underwear Group in Australia
Two films in the Made from Cool campaign by Jack & Jones in Denmark

And further bronzes to the likes of: Rip Curl, Uniqlo, Foot Locker, Rolex, Ray-Ban, Havaianas. Check out last year’s winners, here.

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Digital snippets: Oculus, Luxottica, Wren, Asos, Nike, Birchbox, Tom Ford, Kenzo

The big tech story this week has of course been about Facebook’s purchase of virtual reality headset company Oculus VR. But there were lots of others to know about too. Read on for an edit…


  • Google deal with Luxottica will bring Glass to Ray-Ban, Oakley [WSJ]
  • How Wren made a viral video of strangers kissing and increased sales by nearly 14,000% [Business Insider]
  • Asos and Nike celebrate 27 years of Air Max with first Google+ shoppable hangout [Marketing Magazine]
  • Birchbox, seller of beauty products, steps out from web to open New York store [NY Times]
  • Tom Ford joins the world of e-commerce with sexy new web store [Fashionista]
  • Kenzo’s virtual aquarium highlights the danger of overfishing [PSFK]
  • Chanel releases new Coco Mademoiselle Keira Knightley ad – She’s Not There [The Inspiration Room]
  • Lancôme ramping up digital initiatives [WWD]
  • How Yoox became the Amazon of the fashion world [Telegraph]
  • Why in-store tracking might not be as bad as it sounds [CNNMoney]
  • The Shazam of fashion is here, introducing ‘ASAP54? [Styleite]
  • Silicon Valley never talks about the real reason you don’t own a smart watch or ‘wearable tech’ [Business Insider]


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Digital snippets: Wren, Gucci, John Lewis, Lord & Taylor, Kenneth Cole, Sephora

A bit of a catch-up post today in light of several weeks of travel… here then all the latest stories to know about surrounding fashion and tech from the past fortnight or so:


  • “First Kiss” film (as above) goes viral with 63 million views – is ad for clothing label Wren [NY Times]
  • Gucci launches own Spotify music hub to promote short film ‘The Fringe’ [The Drum]
  • John Lewis looks to digital innovation as next big thing in retail with ‘JLab incubator’ [The Guardian]
  • Lord & Taylor now accepting bitcoin [CNBC]
  • Kenneth Cole challenges consumers to do good deeds and prove it via Google Glass [Creativity]
  • Sephora launches ‘Beauty Board’ social shopping platform [USA Today]
  • Bergdorf Goodman makes Instagram shots shoppable at SXSW with 52Grams [5th/58th]
  • Dolce & Gabbana crafts love story around perfume to appeal to consumer emotion [Luxury Daily
  • adidas launches gaming platform powered by social media starring Lionel Messi [Marketing Magazine]
  • Can Instagram save ageing teen retailer Aeropostale? [CNBC]
  • Which big brands are courting the maker movement, and why – from Levi’s to Home Depot  [AdWeek]
  • How beacon technology could change the way we shop [Fashionista]
  • On Instagram, a bazaar where you least expect it [Bits blog]
  • What Google’s wearable tech platform could mean for the fashion industry [Fashionista]
  • Smartphone payment system to be unveiled in UK [FT]
  • Alibaba ramping up efforts to sell US brands in China [WSJ]
  • What does WeChat’s new e-credit card mean for luxury? [JingDaily]
  • Op-Ed | Are camera phones killing fashion? [BoF]

Jingle all the way at Kmart with #showyourjoe Christmas ad

There’s no doubt about it, this new commercial from US department store Kmart, is in the running for best Holiday campaign 2013. Check out the boys jingle their way through…