Discover the most relevant industry news and insights for fashion creatives, updated each month to enable you to excel in job interviews, promotion conversations or perform better in the workplace by increasing your market awareness and emulating market leaders.
BoF Careers distils business intelligence from across the breadth of our content — editorial briefings, newsletters, case studies, podcasts and events — to deliver key takeaways and learnings tailored to your job function, listed alongside a selection of the most exciting live jobs advertised by BoF Careers partners.
Key articles and need-to-know insights for creatives in fashion today:
1. The New Creatives Bringing Fashion Brands Into the Virtual World
As more brands extend themselves into virtual environments such as video games and launch web3 projects like NFT collections, they are leaning on a new generation of creatives skilled in fields such as 3D design, gaming and blockchain to translate their images into these digital spaces. […] The aim is to capitalise on the opportunities appearing in digital spaces. Whether they’re doing that by marketing a physical product or racking up NFT sales, they’re seeking support from those with the expertise to bring their concepts to digital life.
Part of what brands need from these digital talents is their technical abilities, like proficiency in 3D design, being able to build virtual avatars or knowing how to mint NFTs on a blockchain. But they may also need creative direction and guidance on how to create immersive experiences that enrich the stories around their products or image.
Graphic Designer, Cutler & Gross — London, United Kingdom
Digital Tech, Neiman Marcus — Dallas, United States
Site and App Content Producer, Athleta — San Francisco, United States
2. Why Hermès’ MetaBirkins Lawsuit Has High Stakes for Brands and Creators
The [MetaBirkins] case is already shaping how the industry thinks about NFTs from a legal perspective. In his order, the judge made clear that NFTs, despite being code pointing to an image, can qualify as artistic expression, which means — importantly — they could be protected as free speech by the first amendment to the US constitution, according to Felicia Boyd, US head of IP brands at law firm Norton Rose Fulbright. Commodities such as mass-produced reprints of artwork do not receive that protection.
The court [also] acknowledged there is a distinction between the MetaBirkins and a digital wearable. It’s still unclear if any eventual decision would address whether the law should treat them differently, but the point is hardly moot when digital creators are making and selling items for use in online spaces from Roblox to The Sandbox, a new blockchain-based world.
Digital Designer, House of Hackney — London, United Kingdom
Creative Consultant, Mytheresa — Munich, Germany
Junior Graphic Designer, Amiri — Los Angeles, United States
3. What Designers Can Learn From Issey Miyake
[One Issey] Miyake lesson: ditch nostalgia. Since he established Miyake Design Studio in Tokyo in 1970, [the designer] has been constantly moving forward, channelling countless advancements in construction and fabrication. Resolutely rooted in the moment, he kept looking ahead rather than back, whilst still nurturing an acute awareness of past traditions.
Creating clothing that moves instead of just looking good in a static image — the main curse of contemporary fashion making — was another key Miyake achievement. The flowing shapes and volumes he conceived were meant to float around the body; his silhouettes were never static, because movement was always part of his creative process. So was the space between his clothing and the body. Miyake’s epic collaboration with Irving Penn was a testament to that.
Graphic Designer, Frescobol Carioca — London, United Kingdom
Print Designer, Vetements — Zurich, Switzerland
Art Director, Apparatus — New York, United States
4. The Real Value of Balenciaga’s Viral Trash Bag
[Balenciaga’s $1,790] ‘trash bag’ stunt follows the now familiar attention-grabbing formula [creative director] Demna Gvasalia is known for: selling outrageous objects at bank-breaking prices, which question the definition of luxury and poke fun at fashion.
The designer may be onto something. The week following the bag’s drop, Balenciaga was mentioned in over 54,000 tweets, [generating] almost $2 million in media impact value. There is, however, risk of consumer fatigue in repeatedly using these boundary-bending, trick-mirror tactics: the week of the destroyed Paris sneakers campaign [for example], Brandwatch registered over 18,000 negative mentions of Balenciaga.
Digital and Content Creative, Cou Cou Intimates — London, United Kingdom
Brand Image Manager, Ralph Lauren — New York, United States
Artistic Creative and Image Assistant Manager, Charles & Keith — Singapore
5. Fashion Should Pay Attention to Instagram’s Content Troubles
Instagram is [a] larger platform [than TikTok]. […] But TikTok is leading in some key measures. The app was downloaded more than Instagram in the first quarter of 2022. In the US, the average TikTok user also spends 29 hours a month on the app compared to 8 hours for the average Instagram user, Bloomberg reported. These shifts have consequences for fashion.
TikTok is the place where trends like “coastal grandma” with its breezy, beachy minimalism bubble up. The app holds an outsized sway over young shoppers too. In a survey last year, 39 percent of the Gen-Z respondents said TikTok videos were among the influential factors that would get them to buy a new product. Instagram ads and Instagram influencers trailed behind at 23 percent and 22 percent, respectively. Even if Instagram still commands a larger audience and bigger marketing budgets, TikTok has become a platform fashion businesses must pay attention to.
Assistant Manager Site Content, Coach — New York, United States
Creative Project Coordinator, Peter Millar — Raleigh, United States
Senior Manager Digital Platform and Business Product, Tapestry — Shanghai, China
6. Why CryptoPunks and Bored Apes Are Fashion
Many in fashion dismiss [NFT profile-picture collections, or PFPs] as crude and silly. Maybe they can be called collectables — even art — but not fashion. Yet they arguably share enough characteristics to classify them that way.
PFPs serve as a stylised visual representation of their owner. We put them on like digital clothes so we’re not naked, virtually speaking. They signal tastes and affiliations. They aren’t purely practical and have some sort of aesthetic value, dubious as it may be (though the same is true for plenty of physical clothing). They even follow trends; some projects come into style while others go out. In other words, fashion.
Product Designer, Zalando — Berlin, Germany
Graphic Designer, Norma Kamali — New York, United States
Web Producer, Old Navy — San Francisco, United States
7. Rethinking Luxury’s Relationship With Black Consumers
More than ever before, Black consumers are helping drive impressive growth in the American luxury market. Non-white ethnic groups accounted for about 20 percent of luxury spend in the US market in 2019 — a figure that’s projected to rise to 25 to 30 percent by 2025, according to a Bain report.
However, Black consumers’ appetite for luxury is growing in tandem with their expectation that the brands they support are making worthwhile progress on diversity, equity and inclusion. Jessica Couch, co-founder of Fayetteville Road, a retail technology consultancy, [said,] “I think there is a shift in what’s cool, and we’re becoming a lot more informed … It’s no longer cool to wear a brand that doesn’t support you.” The crux of the problem, added Couch, is that many high-end brands haven’t actually “taken the time to do a deep dive into understanding different parts of Black culture,” and where data is available, it is easily misread.
Videographer and Editor, ME+EM — London, United Kingdom
Senior Manager Art Direction, Hugo Boss — Stuttgart, Germany
Creative Designer Yeezy Gap, Gap — San Francisco, United States
8. The Hottest Perfume Start-Up in Paris
For [Barnabé Fillion’s] new venture Arpa, which launched last year, the brand has forged collaborations with the worlds of art and music, commissioning sculptures, vinyl records and playlists to release alongside each scent, the idea being that the resulting works can both complement and influence users’ experience of what they are smelling.
Arpa’s launch comes as the perfume industry pushes upmarket, with sales of super-premium niche fragrances from companies like Byredo and Le Labo doubling last year, compared with around 50 percent growth for the overall market, which remains dominated by advertising-driven commercial blockbusters. Top-end private lines from luxury brands like Dior’s “Collection Privée” (including €240 Bois D’Argent and Ambre Nuit) and Chanel’s “Les Exclusifs” also surged, growing 85 percent in 2021 according to consultancy NPD.
Senior Graphic Designer and Content Creator, Galvan — London, United Kingdom
Graphic Designer, Moose Knuckles — New York, United States
Visual Creative Manager, Banana Republic — San Francisco, United States