Fashion, Brands, and NFTs - Why We Need to Do Better

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NFT technology has impressed a lot of people with its potential and unique approach towards creating and securing digital collectibles. Like many other industries, the fashion world was quick to adopt NFT tech and start capitalizing on the surge of attention in the space. That said, is there any actual innovation taking place, or are fashion NFTs already out of style?

This Catwalk Doesn’t Purr

When NFTs first started getting attention, the traditional fashion world wasn’t too impressed. Criticism mostly revolved around how fashion brands could communicate the value of a digital good to their customers.

We saw a lot of traction from Web3 native brands like Bored Ape Yacht Club who experienced major success selling hoodies, shirts, and caps. In the months following, a lot of the NFT space started token-gating merchandise to their communities.

However, not even the native Web3 brands are safe from criticism. BAYC’s recent merch drop wasn’t met with as much fanfare as their first drop. Although some people still liked the merchandise, you’re essentially paying a good chunk of change for the privilege of buying it. To my mind, I’m pretty sure we can do more.

Other brands like RTFKT also caused a stir with how they handled the drop for their AR Hoodie collaboration with Nike.

Where the Heck Is the Innovation?

While we can undoubtedly do more to innovate in terms of how NFTs are used in the realm of fashion, some brands are already experimenting with new ideas.

Louis Vuitton , for instance, launched a game to celebrate their bicentennial birthday. In the game, players could earn 30 different NFTs which players could win by completing various tasks and quests.

Gucci has also embraced Web3 and gaming in a meaningful way. They recently collaborated with Pokémon GO , Roblox , and Web3 brands such as SUPERPLASTIC and 10KTF .

Where Do We Go From Here?

Right now, fashion brands are still acclimating to NFTs and looking at how to innovate in a creative space. Merch for your metaverse character or a perk for minting an NFT by redeeming it for physical clothing isn’t really unique or a game changer.

The main issue is that the fashion world is still exploring this evolving technology. It’s likely that the future lies somewhere in how we experience fashion and how we shop. Decades ago the majority of people never thought that buying things online would be feasible at the scale it is today. “Why buy something online when I can just head down to the store?” We hear similar things now as different brands are looking into creating VR shopping experiences or AR try-on applications.

There’s definitely a lot of room to grow and be so much more than what we’re seeing today. This won’t happen overnight of course, but some of the current efforts by a few leading brands are a pretty decent start. As NFTs continue to evolve, so too will campaigns surrounding NFTs. It’s all just a matter of time, and you can bet that we’re still right at the beginning of the journey.

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Ray doesn't believe the metaverse will be viable until we can engage in hand to hand combat via haptic suits.

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