The new fashion professions are all about digital and sustainable


Even fashion will never be the same after the pandemic. The health emergency brought a decisive shift in a world already heading for a different future, driven by digital and sustainability. Consumer habits and tastes have radically changed, compelling fashion houses and designers to devise an alternative future. “The entire fashion world is undergoing a sweeping revolution, one that began even before Covid-19 and now is gathering considerable speed. The new media have greatly contributed to this: until recently it would have been unthinkable to see Miuccia Prada in a live talk on TikTok“, comments Cristina Cancer, Head of Alumni, Career Service and Industry Relations at the Marangoni Institute in Milan. It seems that this is only the beginning. 

A new period of change 

Consumption has certainly shifted over the long pandemic year. Consumer spending in the fashion industry dropped by 23.5% at the end of 2020 compared to 2019, with an estimated loss in turnover of €51.4 billion. Including related sectors, the figure rises to 68.7 billion (-23.8% compared to 2019). 

2020 McKinsey report concludes that the pandemic unfolded an unexpected disruptive change, triggering new balances and dynamics that caught brand managers everywhere off guard. This entire industry value chain is poised for disruption and, once the pandemic is over, digital acceleration, industry consolidation, innovation and sustainability will remain on the agenda of industry stakeholders. 

“The pandemic meant that we had to learn to live without an audience at major catwalks and venues. In addition to the long-term trends already in place, this state of necessity has forced everyone to reinvent themselves and what has been learnt during this year is bound to stick”, says Cancer. This is precisely how virtual fashion shows and presentations of garments and accessories in augmented reality came about. “We may very well soon see a world in which clothes are no longer worn physically but virtually. That would truly be a revolution tailored especially for the tastes of Millennials and Gen Z, who now experience fashion very differently from us, concludes Cancer. 

until recently it would have been unthinkable to see Miuccia Prada in a live talk on TikTok 

Author: Cristina Cancer, Head of Alumni, Career Service and Industry Relations at the Marangoni Institute in Milan 

The new professions 

New professions have therefore emerged to reconcile stringent needs with new requirements. “The digital revolution has given rise to figures such as e-commerce managers, digital market managers, new media copywriters and data analysts: all of them are transferring knowledge into the virtual world, something that once could be expressed in real life but no longer can”, says Cancer. 

Interpreting the tastes of consumers and the new generations on the Internet is important, but so is redesigning fashion shows to suit the new spaces. A recent instance of this was the presentation of Burberry’s new Olympia bag, which dazzled buyers “up close” thanks to Farfetch’s 3D technology. “In addition to social media, there is also a very substantial digital push in the creation of digital and 3D software to render a more immersive viewer experience. And so we have the 3D virtual designer, who designs clothes using augmented reality”, says Cancer. 

Yet there is one more key factor that should not be overlooked, namely sustainability. “We owe it above all to the younger generation to take care of the environment and recycling. They are the ones who shone the spotlight on the emissions and waste associated with fast fashion“. This also explains the emergence of professionals such as resellers. The 2020 Circular Fashion Report expects the circular fashion market to have a potential value of $5 trillion, 63% more than the traditional fashion industry. Young people in particular are pushing it: In fact, as I-D points out, “50% of Millennials and Generation Z will be buying more and more second-hand products this year, looking to pieces from the past as the answer to increasingly repetitive seasonal trends”. There is no shortage of virtual platforms: Vinted, launched in 2012, is the most widely used today, with 45 million users. 

We may very well soon see a world in which clothes are no longer worn physically but virtually 

Author: Cristina Cancer, Head of Alumni, Career Service and Industry Relations at the Marangoni Institute in Milan 

The projects 

In this context, it is certainly important to train people who can cope with such a work-related challenge. “At the Marangoni Institute, we were the first to set up a series of specific courses to adapt to the demands of the market”, points out Cancer.

Another example is the partnership between Domus Academy Milano and Rinascente to kick off the “Conscious Fashion Retail Experience” project, which ran from April to June. The first phase saw students and prospective students collaborating with video interviews directly from the store and three cross-disciplinary workshops, in which students worked on designing a new shopping experience. The next phase entailed an academic workshop involving three different interrelated masters to tackle the same theme from different points of view, enhancing the multidisciplinary approach that serves as the cornerstone of the training approach used by Domus Academy Milano. At the end of the workshop, the students are assigned the task of bringing together the individual proposals to compose an overall strategy to cover every aspect of presentation, sales and communication. 

Di |2024-07-15T10:06:30+01:00Giugno 7th, 2021|Education, Future of Work, MF|0 Commenti