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Digital Meets Sustainable: The key Learnings From Stockholm Fashion Week

Natasha Binar
*Header image courtesy of Stockholm Fashion Week /Photographed by Christabelle Beaudry @lestreetedit

 

The Swedish fashion industry is pushing for a digital and sustainable future in the hopes of setting a positive example by becoming the first completely fur-free fashion week. The industry itself had an annual turnover of 350 billion Swedish kronor or $40 billion in 2019; however, fashion week in Stockholm was briefly paused last year due to financial reasons. Back onto the fashion week calendar in 2020, Stockholm Fashion Week just held its first online show. This time, the completely digital event was inaugurated by the HRH Crown Princess Victoria, who was speaking from her home at Haga Palace in Stockholm.

 

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© Kungl. Hovstaterna

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“We decided to come back this year because a digital fashion week would be so suitable for Sweden, which is at the forefront of digital innovation,” stated Catarina Midby, secretary-general of the Swedish Fashion Association and organizer of Stockholm Fashion Week. 

Sustainability and digital innovation are in the focus of the entire fashion industry these days, so Swedish fashion seems well-positioned to respond to the new market narrative, with Stockholm Fashion Week’s digital edition being a suitable platform to showcase ideas and designs in the notion of a ‘new normal.’ The ‘new normal’ in fashion was on the agenda of the three-day program – circularity, and diversity, digitization, and climate action. Experts, editors, brands, and scientists gathered in Zoom talks and live webinars, and sharing insights and thoughts around the broader industry’s environmental impact. 

A few notable brands including Arket, Rodebjer, Stand Studio, House of Dagmar, and ATP Atelier participated in the three-day virtual showcase. While the format is already becoming familiar, with London, Milan, Paris, and, most recently, Copenhagen – Stockholm introduced the broadcasting element. Most presentations happened in real life in the city’s Fotografiska Museum, with virtual attendees being able to tune in and follow along in real-time.

The intriguing question remains – was it a good move forward for participating brands as they embrace a new, post-Covid reality that affects not only the way consumers shop but also how they listen to the brands that matter to them? 

Take an A Day’s March, a menswear brand known for minimalist, classic designs, who debuted its womenswear collection, designed by Behnaz Aram, (he previously worked H&M’s brand &Other stories). The brand’s business model is based on direct sales to consumers, with no sales through department stores, but only its own channels, including its own e-store,  and six physical stores in Stockholm, Copenhagen, and London. 

 

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INTRODUCING WOMEN. OCTOBER 2020.

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The collection presentation kicked off during the virtual fashion week and received around 3K views alone on Instagram. In our recent report, Marketing Reset: A Data Snapshot of the Fashion Industry, we have highlighted that Owned Media channels including social platforms have gained importance as consumers seek relatability within the brand’s personal narrative. 

When looking at some Swedish brands here and the evolution of their Media Impact Value, there are some numbers that indicate that Stockholm Fashion Week is likely to become an important vehicle for those looking into media exposure and more detailed brand storytelling. 

Tiger of Sweden has shown 80% of its total Voice Mix being attributed to Media in 2019 and 85% in 2020. When looking at the Influencer Mix, there is a notable shift from the 20%/80% ratio allocated to Mid-Tier and Micro Influencers in 2019. This has changed in 2020 with Mega Influencers accounting for 39% of the total MIV® generated by influencers. 

Why is this relevant when talking about Stockholm fashion week being a completely digital event? As many events and shows move into digital spaces, the importance of Voices that can amplify collections increases. Brands now not only tell stories that focus on their values rather than products; they also are looking for ways to be part of relatable content addressing current issues. Sustainability, diversity, and inclusivity are all topics that drive fashion conversations now – and Stockholm executed this agenda in the best way, and has become an inspiration for digital storytelling, activating relevant and important Voices and the entire creative community of Swedish fashion. 

So, what can we learn from Stockholm Fashion Week?

  • Small is beautiful. A focused and narrowed down selection creates an impact to get the message of the fashion week across. 
  • Digital events can bring emotional engagement – especially when live-streaming is a preferred broadcasting option. 
  • Brands need to communicate the right narrative at the right time. Selecting and executing showcases around topics that matter to the community is key for authentic, relatable marketing. 

Click here to find out more about how to create, share, and measure events with our live, digital, and hybrid events management solution specifically for the fashion, luxury, and beauty industry.
stockholm fashion week 2020

Natasha BinarCommunication Manager Northern Europe & Middle East

London-Berlin-Munich. With her background in media management, Natasha launched projects for creative industries in East London, collaborating with the finest British talents. She also worked as Producer with British Sky Broadcasting in developing and implementing their content strategy for Sky Interactive. In Berlin, Natasha continued her consultancy work focussing on business development, digital strategies and branding. Her first book Berlin Catwalks has been released in 2011. Natasha is a senior lecturer in the Academy of Fashion and Design in Munich. She also holds a Master’s degree in Organizational and Social Psychology from the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE).

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