Ralph Lauren, a luxury fashion brand, has announced a partnership with Zepeto, a social networking app and avatar simulation app.
The app allows users to function in a fully articulated virtual world where they can socialise with others using a customisable 3D avatar. The app will allow users to buy a complete digital Ralph Lauren clothing line, which is similar to its physical apparel. They can also dress their avatars in unique products.
The Ralph Lauren x Zepeto collection will feature 12 looks in total, with over 50 unique items on offer, including a mix of vintage Polo Ralph Lauren designs and pieces from its current summer collection. Limited edition skateboards, as well as other exclusive pieces, will be available for purchase online.
In addition, players will also have access to a Ralph Lauren themed virtual world, including digital versions of three iconic brand locations such as the Madison Avenue Flagship and Ralph’s Coffee Shop. Interactive spaces are designed to celebrate the brand by encasing it’s spirit and attitude in a digital sphere.
“Ralph Lauren’s new partnership with Zepeto further demonstrates our belief that innovating in virtual worlds is essential to engaging the next generation of consumers,” said Alice Delahunt, Ralph Lauren’s chief digital officer, in a release. “Ralph Lauren is open to new environments and we are excited to push the boundaries within this emerging field. The next frontier is making our product digitally available for purchase and use, and allowing consumers to interact with the brand in new immersive ways.”
Augmented reality fashion took off last year whilst the world faced a global lockdown, seeing homebound individuals take to avatar games like Animal Crossing as a substitute for the outside world. Marc Jacobs and Valentino, two of the world’s most famous fashion brands, jumped on this trend by creating outfits that players could access via a code. This allowed them to dress up their virtual selves with the most recent designer pieces.
This is also not the first time Ralph Lauren has dived into the world of augmented reality and digital products. The brand previously launched a collection featuring Bitmoji’s and partnered with Snapchat’s virtual reality technology. More recently, the brand teamed up with G2 Esports to create a luxury collection for an elite esports gaming team.
To celebrate the launch of the Zepeto partnership, K-Pop band Tomorrow X Together will be hosting a live virtual event at the Ralph Lauren flagship store on Madison Avenue. Visitors will be able to interact with the band through their Zepeto avatars, where each member of the virtual group will wear pieces from the collection.