Augmenting Fashion Reality

You all know by now that I love a mix of fashion and technology. They are two industries that, in my opinion, go hand in hand. Over the last number of years, augmented reality has gained popularity and attention. Essentially, augmented reality is adding a digital layer of information to the physical world. There have been some brilliant uses of this type of technology in the fashion world, and today I wanted to show you some of my favourites.

Net-A-Porter are not afraid of embracing technology at all. It’s possibly one of my favourite things about them, apart from the drop dead gorgeous range of fashion on their site. They’ve done some interesting things with AR over the last few years. Back in September 2011, to celebrate Fashion’s Night Out, Net-A-Porter created a pop up shop with an augmented reality window where customers could shop or win the items displayed using their smartphones or tablets

Then in January 2012, Net-A-Porter used augmented reality again for the global launch of Karl Lagerfeld’s collection. Across five cities; Paris, London, New York, Berlin and Sydney, sites were set up with cubes or storefronts featuring the Karl Lagerfeld logo. Customers could use their smartphones or tablets again, to shop or win pieces of the collection or gift cards for Net-A-Porter.

¬†One of the biggest issues for online retailers, is the percentage of returns that they get. This is because there is no real substitute for trying on the clothes, physically touching it, seeing the fit, the fabric, how sheer the garment is, etc. Currently, there isn’t much online retailers can do about this, unless they utilise augmented reality. Bodymetrics have come up with a solution. Using body mapping, a 3-D model of your body is projected onto the screen and you can see how you would look in the clothes. Pretty ingenious. There is already lots of this going on in stores, but expect online retailers to embrace this technology in the future, to potentially help deal with the issue of returns.


Vogue has nailed augmented reality in my opinion. They are a perfect example of the digital enhancing the physical, which is what AR is all about. The content within the magazines is now marked if it is interactive. From there, readers can use their smartphones or tablets to watch videos come to life, listen to playlists related to the articles, and unlock additional content. It is brilliant, simple and easily explained.

There is lots more examples of augmented reality in fashion out there. Trendhunter has 22 really diverse examples on their site, as does Mashable, and there are lots of YouTube clips and articles online. I expect augmented reality in fashion to become huge in the coming years. Google glasses were featured at fashion week and as we have seen in this post, retailers and the fashion industry, aren’t afraid to experiment with this technology.

I will be away for the next couple of days, touring around Ireland with a ballet school. Its going to be so much fun! To keep updated don’t forget to check out the Okaybee Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.


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Photo credit: Bodymetrics

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  1. Reblogged this on Apparmo.


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