By Alex Spignesi The first week of September in New York City: the air feels cooler, tourists retreat, Starbucks releases pumpkin spice, and my most favorite, Mercedes Benz Fashion Week. For 8 days Lincoln Center is home to fashion industry heavy hitters as they gather to watch presentations by the most acclaimed designers for the Spring 2013 season.
Fashion Week is an event I dream of attending, and until I become one of those fashion industry hard hitters I will follow from the sidelines. In recent years social media made following events of New York Fashion Week in real time a reality. Even the official Mercedes Benz Fashion Week site features a section called “Social” hosting Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram feeds for those looking to catch insider action.
If Fashion Week were the journey, Twitter would be the tour guide. This year, in comparison to years past, saw exponentially more interaction via Twitter. Popular hashtags like #NYFW, #MBFW, #FNO, allowed those at home to follow shows, behind the scenes, and events related to Fashion Week. In addition to hashtags, following the influential attendees (ahem…@DKNY) also gave us an insider experience. Mark and James, of Mark & James by Badgely Mischka, took over the @BadgelyMischka handle and hosted a Tweet Up in the MBFW Lounge, once again proving that social media made its mark on Fashion Week.
Thanks to digital advances anyone has the chance to see what it feels like to have the best seat in the house through live streaming. Once exclusive shows are available to all with a device and good connection. Youtube even dedicated an entire channel, Live From The Runway, featuring everyone from J. Mendel to Betsy Johnson. Live streaming became a conduit for new innovations like Moda Operandi, which allows those watching purchase directly from the runway. Using MO consumers can select from the full line, not just the pieces decided by a store’s buyer. ‘In season’ pieces are decided by information collected from direct consumer sales.
Of course, I cannot talk about social media and Fashion Week without mentioning Diane Von Furstenburg and Google Glass. DVF surprised more than the fashion world when she sent her models down the runway in Google’s Glass. These augmented reality glasses announced last spring as Project Glass, gave us a seamless model perspective from the DVF show with footage from backstage to down the runway. Pictures were sent to the DVF Google+ page hashtagged with #DVFThroughglass. On September 13th a final video was released filmed entirely with Glass, featuring behind the scenes shots, views from the runway, and commentary by DVF herself.
It makes sense that social media has such a presence at Fashion Week. Social media is all about trending, and fashion is all about trends, together they make one good looking couple, current and stylish. Now we can only look to the future as industry innovators bring fashion and the digital world together. Maybe we'll even see more things like this.
What do you think of the use of social media at fashion week? What do you see for the future?