• By LL, imagery contributions by Paperdoll


If you can't bring Mohammad to the mountain, bring the mountain to Mohammad: so recites the ancient islamic wisdom. Easy to picture this little man (our symbolical Mohammad) receiving his brand new 3D-printed trainers (our mountain), delivered by a Pikachu-shaped drone. Science fiction? I really don't think so.

What has to do the fashion industry today to get our attention as single individuals? The future is a one-to-one relation between fashion creators and consumers with their specific taste and needs. What is the transition, from the pre-digital fashion system to this ego-fuelled forthcoming phase, prospecting in front of us? A lot of confusion: allow me to say. Some of us would even define it fashion-schizophrenia.

Just take a look at the recent collections, or, simply, go around for a window-shopping stroll (see images below). Agender, multi-ethnic, atemporal, trans-cultural: the current fashion era expresses a gigantic effort to compound the opposites and the differences in order to reach the most diversified audience with the illusion of an authentic experience: globally and simultaneously. In other words: the dynamicity of the market and the fast-devouring attitude towards products and contents make necessary for subjects involved in communication to vehicle more and more complex messages. Only in this way a wider audience can be effectively reached, engaged and retained. Millenials cash-cows are the abused words to identify the new hot and remunerative market segment. Kids sleeping with their smart tablets as a replacement of teddy-bears: absolute experts of trends, depositaries of "what's cool".

The "Brick and Mortar" decline has been for the past fifteen years the centre of most of business discussion: how to offer a competitive advantage to customers almost exclusively oriented to online shopping? Why many retailers are contemplating to apply admission charges to allow access to their stores? The answer is simple. The physical space of the shop can be seen less and less as selling space and, conversely, more and more as an interactive installation. Who hasn't come across the latest insta-campaigns which by the downloading of a tailored Smart App offer the opportunity to create a personalised Ad of the product showcased in-store and share it on the whole social platform? And this is only a small part of the phenomenon.

Optimists love to think that technology is expanding human-race potential and satisfying our growing intellectual curiosity. Nevertheless; can this new marketing strategy be seen as a powerful alimentation source for our narcissistic nature in the attempt of reducing cultural contents to a mere extension of ourselves with the only limited scope of serving our personal pleasures and needs? Someone would call it the new digital-ego-colonialism. Fit definition: don't you think? I may have just made it up.

*Synthesis of the opposites: futuristic and romantic elements as seen in "La Tenda" shop-window, Milan, Via Solferino. Photo by Paperdoll.

* Synthesis of the opposites: tradition and innovation expressed by the combination of prince of wales and athletic-inspired nylon as worn by a young fashionista at Canonbury station, London. By LL.

*Synthesis of the opposites: future-seventies as shown by "Gucci", Sloane St., London. By LL.

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