Yesterday while browsing on Mashable I came across a word that caught my eye: Fashism.
A little research later and I’m convinced that this fash-tech startup is the next big thing. Every one of us (girls and guys alike) have fashion crises. I know this because I live with my brother, and we ask each other ‘how does this look’ almost daily. Luckily I have trained him well (he might beg to differ) and, as a general rule, I trust his judgment. But there are still times when I feel he’s just not getting it. Or sometimes I’m home alone and I careen into what I call a Level 3 Fashion Crisis – immobile, panicked, surrounded by discarded blouses and belts that I’ve tried, in desperation, to use as headgear, or worse.
In times like these I have resorted to Twitter to get an honest opinion – real time results from people who follow me and who care about fashion. See the mini crisis I had when debuting my ASOS leather skirt in Cape Town below:
[I went with option two, by the way.]
Fashism as a platform is designed specifically with times like these in mind. And I think its genius. Girls all over the world are already seeking advice and commentary on their clothes and style in the form of sites like lookbook.nu. But what about a site whose sole purpose is to source advice and support when you’re standing in your broeks with a fine swathe of perspiration starting on your upper lip, your lift’s on its way and you’ve still got a weirdly shaped present to wrap?
Founded by Ashley Granata and Brooke Moreland, Fashism is all about sourcing unbiased opinions when your boyfriend’s had enough of hearing about hemlines riding up and ruffles making you look like a poptartlet. With buying and marketing roles at Bloomingdales.com and Style.com and a fashion column on theGloss.com between them, Granata and Moreland have certainly hit on a good idea that was waiting to happen. They raised the funds needed to launch their startup with the help of generous donors and the rest is (almost) history.
Fashism is available online and as both an iPad and an iPhone app. Users ‘Upload a style’ under one of two categories – ‘Does it work’ and ‘Which is better’. The community then replies Yes or No and A or B respectively. The community can also leave comments and support for each style and browse through categories – ‘Hottest looks’, ‘Just posted’ and ‘Most discussed’.
Interest in Fashism has been so potent that they recently spoke at both the Evolving Influence and the FABB Conferences (Fashion & Beauty Bloggers Conference), joining an illustrious lineup of independent fashion bloggers and online sensations like Susannah Lau of Style Bubble, Rumi Neely, Bryan Boy, Bloglovin’, lookbook.nu, Street Peeper and Gala Darling. Other speakers included representatives from Google, Foursquare and Tumblr, which gives you some idea of the conferences’ level of prestige.
Fashism was also used at New York Fashion Week to promote a young design label that’s being heralded as the next big thing in fashion design. Duo Alan Eckstein and Timo Weiland of Timo Weiland used Fashism to allow fashionistas to try on pieces from their Spring and Fall 2001 collections, which were then uploaded to the site to be commented on by the community. (Full post on Timo Weiland tomorrow!)
Such a great integration of fashion and technology, don’t you think? Social media around the event was massive, another affirmation of how seamlessly the two work together to create hype and establish trends.