Viral style: Why are we obsessed?



Excerpt from this article:

Fashion trends, like TV shows, used to be presented as one-way conversations, but consuming fashion today is a social activity, says Asos daily content editor Daniell Radojcin. “Now girls can interact with a video by liking it, they can post a comment on it, they can share it with their friends on their social media feed,” she says. “Our consumer is far more likely to react to a Suki Waterhouse selfie from the front row of Chanel than an anonymous model walking on the Chanel catwalk”.

… Kingham says she thinks about whether pieces are “instagrammable” before signing up a new designer because fashion that is visually eye-smacking is easier to capture online than more subdued pieces. Footwear label Joshua Sanders and swimwear label Kiini are two recent examples of brands she has taken on thanks to their instant visual appeal. Julia Fowler, co-founder of retail analytics company Editd, agrees that consuming fashion through social media is changing what we buy: “We’ve noted block colours, contrasting prints and eye-catching embellishments perform well, whereas the softness of a cashmere sweater is much harder to communicate.”

… “We are living in an age of instant accessibility and information democracy,” agrees Topshop’s Markham. “Everything we do is driven by our customer who has a constant appetite for newness and approaches trends with a desire to buy and wear now”. It’s not just high street retailers; design houses like Burberry and Moschino capitalise on online buzz by making sure that pieces seen on the catwalk and worn by front row A-listers are available to buy immediately.