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What fashion can be learned from La Réunion, an upcycling startup | Instant News

The La Réunion model is difficult for big brands to imitate, but there may be room for such brands to exert enormous influence or potential to gain market share in the industry. “I think we are in a unique time now,” said Sucharita Kodali, principal retail analyst at Forrester. The shifting retail landscape provides better opportunities for smaller brands than ever before, although it’s still a bustling place, he said; and consumers, brands, and governments all have increased attention to social and environmental issues. “Sustainability must be a cost in running a business and there must be penalties for waste. But we’re not there yet. “

Nsikak thinks that there is room for big fashion players to internalize, implement and reinforce the messages he and other smaller, value-centered designers are trying to promote, from rethinking the value of labor and creativity to restructuring balance sheets to allow for a more distribution of wealth. big. .

“My goal has always been to celebrate Africa, normalize sustainable and slow production, provide opportunities to other women of color, and outsource in a way that supports craftsmen both locally and in Africa,” she said. “Of course, making money is what makes anything possible, but profit redistribution is the thing that appeals more to me. I feel that when values ​​or motives are in place, support tends to follow.”

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Luxury fashion brands are ready to join the NFT party | Instant News

Amber Jae Slooten, co-founder of The Fabricant, a digital fashion house, says the most fun part of NFT is going beyond the physical. “I don’t want to encourage brands to just copy their physical goods,” he said. “I will encourage them to transcend their physical reality. For example, we designed one shoe which is a fire shoe. You can create all kinds of digital couture looks that will never exist in real life. “

The Fabricant recently ran a 3D fashion design competition in collaboration with Adidas and Karlie Kloss’ non-profit, Kode With Klossy. At that time, the top 20 posts auctioned off as an NFT. They are also on display in galleries on Decentraland, where visitors who inhabit avatars can view works of art and virtually bid on designs. The winning design brings in 1.4 ETH, approximately $ 2,400 at current exchange rates. Proceeds from the auction go directly to top artists, while voluntary contributions support new events and programs for the Kode With Klossy alumni community of more than 5,000 scholars.

The “Iridescence” dress from The Fabricant retails for $ 9,500.


Another option for brands is to use the NFT as an opportunity to experiment outside of fashion. Re-inc, a direct-to-consumer brand founded by four American women’s soccer stars including Megan Rapinoe, made a name for itself selling street wear. But now launching a set of NFTs which are GIFs of digital playing cards featuring individual soccer stars. Jenny Wang, co-founder of the fifth Re-inc, said the brand would buy carbon offsets with a portion of the profits, responding to criticism that NFTs are bad for the environment. Environmental concerns are expected to disappear in the coming months: Ethereum is in the works transition to a new “proof of stake” consensus protocol that will dramatically reduce carbon emissions.

Cathy Hackl of the Futures Intelligence Group believes we are at the top of the iceberg when it comes to virtual modes and possibilities. “As we move to a more immersive web, every fashion brand needs to have a virtual strategy,” he said. “Selling dresses and virtual assets will be a significant revenue stream for brands. For my kids, the appearance of their avatar in the game is just as important as their appearance when they go to school. My daughter told me a few days ago about her avatar, ‘Yes mother, I paid a lot for that face.’ “

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The race for an alternative to fashion leather is heating up | Instant News

Mushroom skin is becoming a hot commodity for fashion brands looking for an alternative to genuine leather. Now, Ecovative, a materials innovation company based in New York, sees the industry as the next big opportunity for growth, and plans to scale up production to be the first to offer such a skin-like replacement on a large scale by the end of the year.

Ecovatives grow the mycelium, the root structure of mushrooms, and turn them into skin substitutes, as well as offerings in other sectors, such as meat alternatives. The team served as the initial supplier for the Mylo Bolt Threads mushroom skin, which Stella McCartney piloted in a two-piece vegan collection earlier this year. Ecovative this week announced a $ 60 million Series D financing round, which will be used to expand production and potential applications. CEO Eben Bayer sees mycelium as a solution in reducing the fashion footprint by shifting the industry away from leather, and said it is now ready to scale its own operations and target fashion clients, signaling growing opportunities and increasing competition in the nascent category.

Myomi handbag is made of “leather” mycelium.

Environmentally friendly

“Our mission is to make mycelium widely available on a large scale,” he said. The company plans to take lessons from him its food business and apply it to textiles, Bayer added. “To date, neither fashion brands nor their consumers have access to more than a limited number of mycelium – we are dedicated to changing that.”

Interest in plant-based alternatives to leather is soaring, both because of the heating demand for vegan clothing and as the industry strives to lower its carbon footprint. Animal agriculture is a significant source of global emissions and tropical deforestation, and brands are increasingly willing to experiment with alternative staple foods that are emerging on the market. Earlier this month, Hermès, a major supplier of luxury leather goods, announced plans to use a mycelium-like leather material developed with MycoWorks in one of its bags by the end of the year.

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Apart from Bolted and Ecovative Yarns, MycoWorks also works with mycelium, Natural Fiber Welding using cork, natural rubber and other natural materials for make the Mirum materials such as leather, and a number of other companies work with plant residues such as grapes and pineapples to create their own substitutes. However, neither of these were used on a large scale; Plant waste bark has been adopted to a limited extent by fashion, and while a number of large or well-known brands have taken an interest in Bolt Threads, the company has collaborated on a proof-of-concept product but has not delivered full-scale production. Ecovative wants to be the first to offer a plant-based leather alternative that is ready to scale, and could raise the stakes in the fashion race for more sustainable, higher-quality skin replacement, with a more attractive look and feel, than plastic-based vegan materials.


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What fashion can be learned from beauty activism | Instant News

From social media makeup artists to grassroots bullying brands, beauty is inherently more democratic, perfect for activism, says Uoma Beauty founder Sharon Chuter, who launched Pull Up For Change in the summer of 2020 as a call to action. The exclusivity of top-down fashion makes the industry more resilient, he said.

Scooters must know. After the Black Lives Matter protests that took place in the US and other parts of the world, Pull Up For Change asked companies to share the number of Black employees on their payroll as an act of transparency and unity. While many of the biggest beauty performers participated, including Sephora, Ulta Beauty and Kylie Cosmetics, very few fashion brands responded, Chuter said.

Recently, beauty companies including U Beauty and Beautystack have pledged profits or shared resources to support Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPI) in response to a rise in hate crime. Several fashion brands have shown support: Gucci, for example, endorses things like Stop AAPI Hate through its platform Gucci Equilibrium, which also has a dedicated Instagram account to update followers on its progress. This week also published the third Chime in for change zines, which seek to promote gender equality. But analysts say that, on the whole, fashion is still inferior to beauty.

“One hypothesis is that beauty brands have a deeper relationship with their consumers than fashion brands,” said Robert Jan d’Hond, managing partner at market research firm Kantar and author of 2020 goals reports on the importance of value-driven business. “They are closer to consumers and closer to diversity and inclusion.”

For years, marketers have viewed racial or political messages as divisive, said Michel Brousset, Waldencast’s chief executive and former president of the L’Oréal group. Today, brand activism is a growing priority for consumers making purchasing decisions. Eighty-four percent of global consumers seek to buy products from companies that support activities they care about, according to Kantar’s Global Monitor 2020 survey. In the US, 65 percent of consumers agree that it is important that the companies they buy from actively promote diversity and inclusion in their business or society itself as a whole. Fashion can learn from the excellence of beauty, but must be committed to its goals.

“What we’re seeing is a growing number of buyers driven by confidence,” said Smita Reddy, global client relations leader and managing director of integrated branding and solutions at Edelman. “These are people who vote with their wallets and they will buy or boycott brands based on their stance. Some might say ‘that’s a very Gen Z thing’ but we see it across all age ranges as well as income levels. “

Accountability among online communities

The bully beauty brand was born on social media, built with a strong founding voice and purpose. This encourages industry heritage players to also be more vocal on social issues than the leading brands in other sectors, said d’Hond.


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Inside the bubble of French fashion technology | Instant News

Vestiaire Collective, a luxury resale platform co-founded by Fabre in 2008 and now valued at over € 1 billion, is one of France’s major success stories, highlighted by sale of a 5 percent stake to luxury conglomerate Kering in early March. Apart from Kering, US investment firm Tiger Global Management is also participating in Vestiaire Collective’s latest financing round of € 178 million.

LVMH is now in what it calls its “Season 5” incubator of La Maison des Startups, which nurtures about 25 startups a season, or 50 per year. A typical example is Cleed, which provides AI-customized white label chatbots. A total of 160 agreements have been signed since the opening of La Maison des Startups in 2018, including 60 between May and August 2020. And what sets Paris apart? “Its proximity to mansions,” said Roche-Grenet.

Partnerships happen at an incredible pace. Dry plans to partner with La Caserne, an upcoming incubator dedicated to sustainable fashion. Richemont is a corporate partner of the Plug and Play brand and a retail incubator in Paris.

Since early 2020, French investment bank Bpifrance (founded in 2012) has had a fund of € 100 million to invest in the tech creative industry including fashion technology, including Bpifrance’s investments in Tekyn and Arianee. This commitment to invest is part of a package of actions promised during Emmanuel Macron’s 2017 presidential campaign. “There is a global ambition of Bpifrance to inject more of the means into the creative industry, which we call the French Touch plan,” said Le Mintier. “What is at stake is the economy, competitiveness and influence of France. Paris has real legitimacy when it comes to creativity. “

Overall, Bpifrance has injected around € 1.45 billion into the cultural and creative industries, including € 492 million in fashion by 2020. Corresponding figures for the previous year were € 1.23 billion overall and € 340 million for fashion. Bpifrance has supported fashion brands such as Ami and Officine Générale as well as Vestiaire Collective and Launchmetrics.

Global ecosystem

The investment boost came at the right time. “France is lagging behind,” said Celine Lippi, an early fashion tech fan who co-founded Fashion Capital Partners in 2013. “For a long time, I received projects mainly from the US, UK, Germany, Great Asia … Events like Luxury Forward , the Paris fashion technology incubator, and the digital transformation of the fashion industry have really contributed to the emergence of the startup ecosystem. The current pandemic and drastic change in consumption behavior [helped] to create huge opportunities for emerging startups to disrupt traditional business models. “Among the Lippi funds: Luxury Tech Fund, Cuir Invest for materials, and Provoke Ventures, a new fund dedicated to beauty, wellness and innovation.


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