Fashion brands (at least the good ones) are informed by the zeitgeist. They cull the best from the worlds of cuisine, books, art, music, interiors, and beyond, and infuse that into their collections. They are magpies, creating distinctive nests—their boutiques and displays at retail outlets—that aim to captivate consumers and let them dream. But in the midst of an economic downturn as the result of the coronavirus outbreak, which has forced nonessential businesses to shutter, traffic at these spaces is nonexistent. So to provide the general public, who are quarantined in their homes, with their cultural fill, many are taking all these captured elements to their online platforms.
Some of the biggest labels have enlisted their contacts from disparate industries to provide entertainment and education in the form of videos, interviews, performances, and active audience participation. Admittedly, Netflix, Hulu, and other streaming services are at the top of our queues. But in between episodes of Tiger King and Little Fires Everywhere, we’re plugging into a podcast with a feminist painter, discovering the secret ingredient in a delectable recipe from a top chef, taking out our sketchbooks and re-creating beautiful images, and immersing ourselves in other enlightening programming that raises our spirits. And in these distressing times, everyone could use some of that.
The French label has launched #BalmainEnsemble, an initiative on its social media channels that will feature inspirational posts with friends and artists associated with the brand. On My 17, R&B group Chloe x Halle will celebrate the release of its new single, "Do It," by performing on Balmain's Instagram Live.
Under the helm of creative director Jonathan Anderson, the Spanish label has created Loewe en Casa, a digital initiative that highlights its collaborators and burgeoning creatives, including the finalist of its Loewe Foundation Craft Prize. On April 23 at 1 p.m., for World Book Day, model Kaia Gerber who will read The Portrait of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde.
In March, the storied French label, under the direction of creative director Maria Grazia Chiuri, instituted a podcast series dubbed Dior Talks. Here, host Katy Hessel interviews a series of feminist artists and curators, asking them about their lives, their work, and the journeys they took to become luminaries in the modern-day women’s rights movement. Additionally, the Musée des Arts Décoratifs will showcase a virtual tour of Christian Dior: Designer of Dreams, a recent exhibition about the brand’s history, on its YouTube and Instagram channels.
The French label will roll out a series of talks, DIY guides, and live performances on its Instagram feed throughout the coming days. The program, called Chloé Voices, will feature creative director Natacha Ramsay-Levi, writer Pauline Klein, artists Langley Fox Hemingway and Rithika Merchant, songstress Ellie Goulding, and DJs Parcels Flora Fischbach and Pandora’s Jukebox.
The luxury Italian label has launched #ChezMaisonValentino, a new program that it will host on its Instagram platform. Here, audiences can get their fill of entertainment, where the brand has enlisted a roster of A-list talents for performances that speak to the joy and romanticism that we come to expect with its fashion collections. And the first on the queue is none other than Alicia Keys, the Grammy Award-winning songstress and piano virtuoso.
MUBI is the latest service to offer something special during lockdown, with a fashion twist. The movie streamer has teamed up with Celine's Hedi Slimane to provide a selection of movies carefully curated by the artistic director.
Titled Prada Possible Conversations (a riff off Schiaparelli and Prada: Impossible Conversations, the Met's Spring 2012 Costume Institute exhibition), the luxury Italian brand's series of digital talks are one-on-one discussions hosted on its Instagram account. The first, between Pamela Golbin and Alexander Fury, is about fashion in the time of crises (it goes live on April 14 at noon). Each chat will result in a donation from Prada to UNESCO. Additionally, the brand's art and culture organization, Fondazione Prada, has created Love Stories, A Sentimental Survey by Francesco Vezzoli, a digital endeavor that will pose a series of questions to its Instagram audience. By weeks end, according to a release, personalities culled by the group will "try to decode the answers, to interpret the participants’ moods and emotions, to sketch a partial portrait of a community of people sharing existential conditions such as uncertainty, suspension, and desire to restart in this historical moment."
In a program called McQueen Creators, the English designer label is unearthing images from its archives and asking its Instagram audience to reimagine them using materials found at home. It also launched a channel on Spotify that will feature music from its past fashion shows.
Spanning all its online platforms—Instagram, YouTube, Weibo, Line, Kakao, Spotify, Apple Music, and its website—the Italian label intends to showcase chefs, artists, writers, musicians, film directors, and designers in what it calls a “laboratory of creativity.”
At the start of April, the eponymous designer hosted a chat with model Halima Aden on her brand’s Instagram account. Using #ToryStories, the brand will also be conducting Instagram takeovers centered around cooking, table settings, crafts, health, and wellness.
Jonathan Anderson, under his own namesake label, has launched JWQ&A, a series of chats hosted on the brand's social media channels. Speakers will include Tyler Mitchell, Justin Vivian Bond, and Iris Law.
The luxury footwear brand has partnered with the Mental Health Foundation on a project called Smile, which is essentially a coloring book made up of the eponymous designer’s favorite sketches.
The French maison enlisted Belgian singer Angèle to stream a live performance on its Instagram account, encouraging the masses to stay home. It has also created a new playlist on Apple Music.
The footwear label has launched Choo Sketch, an initiative that asks its audience to submit videos and drawings of shoe designs that it will feature on its social media channels. The brand will then pick five of the most creative options and produce them for a capsule collection, with all the profits going to an undisclosed charity.
The American designer has launched Our Flower Shop, an online enterprise that features six different types of floral arrangements rendered by Jonathan Cohen. Moreover, viewers are able to purchase and personalize bouquets, with 30 percent of the proceeds going toward A Common Thread, Bowery Mission, Feed the Frontlines NYC, and No Kid Hungry.
The American fashion brand is hosting a program on its Instagram called Happiest Hour. Every weekday at 5 p.m., influencers, models, stylists, celebrities, and other friends of the company will discuss how they are staying positive during this time.
The French fashion label is asking its audience to submit images and videos of its products, which it will then feature on its Instagram.
M Missoni and Awaytomars, the world’s first 100 percent user-created fashion brand, have joined forces to invite designers from all over the globe to virtually co-create a capsule collection that will be produced and sold worldwide.
The English designer has created #StellaCommUnity and #StellaStaircase, and is asking its audience to film light, humorous scenarios around sets of steps.
The American fashion label is asking its audience to illustrate homages to its collections and tag #HerrerainColor. It will then post its favorite submissions on its social media platforms.
The French fashion brand has created #Isabelmarantfromhome, a program hosted on its Instagram account that will feature weekly activities, including workout classes, live DJ sets, quizzes, recipes, and music playlists.
The Italian brand has partnered with the Peggy Guggenheim Collection in Venice, Italy, hosting virtual tours of the museum and lectures by art academics on its Instagram account. The initiative celebrates the art institution's 40th anniversary.
The Italian fashion brand has launched a program on Instagram called #MiuMe, which will feature figures from the art, dance, sport, and fashion industries. In the ongoing series, each personality will unearth pieces from the brand's past collections and photograph themselves in their respective environments.
Dolce & Gabbana
The Italian label has launched #DGFattoinCasa, a program on its Instagram account that will share its core values: family, tradition, and quality. To emphasize these characteristics, celebrities, artisans, and other friends of the brand will be featured on the platform, providing entertainment and encouraging viewers to remain indoors. The talents will also ask viewers to donate to the Humanitas University and its efforts to find a treatment for COVID-19.
For Mother's Day, Salvatore Ferragamo will host a conversation series on its Instagram account between model Carolyn Murphy and three other mothers in the fashion industry. On select dates, Miranda Kerr (May 6), Athena Calderone (May 7), and Lily Aldridge (May 8), will chat in there respective homes, lending advice on motherhood, wellness, design, and more.
The burgeoning fashion label has collaborated with Turnaround Arts on #CultGaiaLetsCreate, an initiative that provides entertainment while also giving back to children. The brand is asking its Instagram audience to create an image, tag @CultGaia, and use the hashtag. For each post, Turnaround Arts will donate one art kit to a kid in a high-need community. The program follows #CultGaiaLetsDance, which partnered with No Kid Hungry.
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