Browse all

‘Animal Crossing: New Horizons’ hosted its first digital fashion show

The future of the fashion industry is online

‘Animal Crossing: New Horizons’ hosted its first digital fashion show The future of the fashion industry is online

Following the creations of its users, who dressed up their avatars with items from Prada, Supreme e Louis Vuitton, Animal Crossing: New Horizons has hosted its first official digital fashion weekReference Festival, a Berlin fashion festival, chose the Nintendo videogame to stage a virtual fashion show with clothes inspired by Loewe, Prada and many others. 

The show was curated by stylist and 032c fashion director Marc Goehring along with photographer Kara Chung, who's already famous for her Instagram account @animalcrossingfashionarchive where she collects the best outfits seen on the videogame, and consists in a 3-minutes long video with the soundtrack of Michel Gaubert. Exception made for the lack of the "physical" part of the event, the differences with the traditional fashion shows are really minimal. This decision confirms the trend already suggested by many fashion institutions that chose the web and its platforms to "save" the fashion industry from the consequences of the COVID-19 emergency. 

Released on March 20, 2020, in just two months Animal Crossing: New Horizons (the fifth instalment of the Animal Crossing saga) has sold more than 13 million copies, 12 millions of which only were sold in the first 11 days after the release. Not even Nintendo was expecting this success: the videogame has already reached the sales expectations of its entire production cycle (3 years). Between a sneaker shop and a Leonardo da Vinci's exhibitionAnimal Crossing: New Horizons has become a creepy substitute of the real world.

Forced at home by the lockdown, users set their creativity free: you can't count the number of initiatives dedicated to arts and fashion. The characteristic that makes Animal Crossing's avatars so unique, in fact, is the possibility to customize their outfits: you can choose colours, shapes and cuts and you can even add logos. It's not surprising that designers like Marc Jacobs accepted to design a collection that was specific for the game or that other brands, like Glossier, have made close replicas of their best-selling products available on the videogame. 

Marc Jacobs was not the only one to show some interest in the new opportunities offered by the digital world. While Instagram put together a real “ABC” with the instructions to host fashion weeks on its platforms, many others already chose the worldwide web as a valid alternative: Shangai Fashion Week and Tokyo's Rakuten Fashion Week were the first entirely digital fashion weeks, followed by the Fashion Unites fashion show by Carine Roitfeld on YouTube and by the live stream A Moment with the Met hosted by Anna Wintour. For Reference Festival it is not the first web experiment: last year, the organization hosted a 24-hours long live stream event. Back in April, Travis Scott's concert on Fortnite decreed the success of this kind of initiatives: the Fortnite Astronomical Tour reunited more than 12 million people only on the videogame's servers, without even counting who decided to watch it on Twitch and other streaming platforms. 

The fashion show hosted by Reference Festival on Animal Crossing, as well as Travis Scott's concert on Fortnite, marks an important shift for the future of the fashion and creative industries: in fact, they are not "user-generated contents", but official events. It is legit to think that many other brands in the immediate future could show some interest in these opportunities. The future of art and design industries seems to be more and more interactive and the crisis of the last months has just pushed them to a change that was already inevitable.