Sunday, 3 January 2010

Cathy Horyn throws down the fashion gauntlet

I'm glad to see Cathy Horyn, fashion critic for The New York Times, challenging fashion brands to be more creative with their websites, in her blog On The Runway. I agree that Hermes has a fantastic site, and she's right to mention Burberry, who've been going to a lot of effort to engage their customers via the web. Horyn was referring to the big fashion houses - in particular Chanel - as being backwards, web-wise, and chides their misguided approach in inviting "those pesky fashion bloggers" (that would me, then) to their shows (she must be excluding Marc Jacobs here, who invited teen blogger Tavi to sit front row as a reflection of the fashion zeitgeist rather than a desperate attempt to attract free publicity). Horyn didn't mention Alexander McQueen, whose attempt to utilise the web was perhaps the most inspired but which was ultimately a victim of its own success: he hired Lady Gaga to perform at his SS10 show which was streamed live on Show Studio: the pop star posted the fact on her Twitter site, causing Show Studio to crash. If anything, it showed that a) the Gaga is worth her hire fee and b) fashion and the web are in the infancy of a very beautiful friendship.

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