Rebecca Minkoff is taking a trip to the Metaverse for fashion week, becoming among the first female designers to create NFTs or non-fungible tokens, those controversial works minted on the blockchain and surrounded by a hype bubble. Minkoff, who is celebrating her 20th year in business, this afternoon will launch her spring collection at an event at Spring Studios cohosted by Lady PheOnix.
The designer has always been at the forefront of technology, streaming her fall collection in February on OnlyFans, and embedding her handbags with QR codes before they were widely used.
“As we began to shape the fashion week experience, we wanted to put together a gallery like experience,” Minkoff told me of the invitation-only event this afternoon at Spring Studios.
Together with Yahoo, Minkoff is breaking barriers across fashion, art, and technology by introducing the first of its kind immersive NFT experience and auction for consumers on a global scale.
Minkoff’s collection, called “I Love New York,” is a multi-layered proposition. One layer are the NFTs that the designer will be auctioning on OpenSea tomorrow.
The second layer is the capsule, which beginning on September 12, will be showcased and available on rebeccaminkoff.com for pre-order with Klarna, a global payments and shopping platform offering customers the convenience and payment flexibility they seek. Fashion lovers can shop the “I Love New York” capsule pieces online and pay in four equal, interest-free installments using Klarna.
The Dematerialized, a destination for digital fashion, is minting a select number of digital garments that will be auctioned on Saturday, Minkoff said.
NFTs, which are powered by Lukso, which bills itself as the blockchain for fashion and lifestyle, are collages capturing a surreal environment of models wearing Minkoff’s designs featuring leather, studs, zippers and fringe, and iconic New York landmarks.
In the images, photographed by Cass Bird, a model carries Minkoff’s redesigned Morning After handbag, superimposed on an electrically-charged bridge, the Chrysler Building, Statue of Liberty and New York skyline. There’s even an aerial of the city with the model wearing one of Minkoff’s studded leather jackets.
“I reimagined and modernized the Morning After bag for a new generation of women, who are as young, hungry and determined as I was when I first moved to New York City two decades ago,” Minkoff said. “The latest version features exaggerated studding, fringe, and zippers, as well as graffiti, which captures the theme of this collection.”
All proceeds will be used to fund a grant for Women Owned Businesses Impacted in New York City by the pandemic. The Female Founder Collective (501c3) will be administering the grant to support the much-needed businesses, Minkoff said, and revenue from NFT resales will continue to benefit the Female Founder Collective due to the NFTs smart contract structure.
“The last 18 months have taken an immeasurable toll on companies across the U.S., but have impacted women and minorities the deepest,” Minkoff said. “In an effort to be innovative as a frontrunner in the industry raising money for charity, this was a new way for us to give back to the female founder community and help benefit their growth and evolution across all industries through grants.”
Minkoff expects the NFTs and digitized fashion on The Dematerialized to bring a new customer into her fold. “The Dematerialized has it’s own audience that’s well versed in technology,” she said. “We partnered with Yahoo to make a 3-D gallery where you can see the NFTs and can link out to the Dematerialized. We see the future of retail and experiential intersecting in a big way. The more you can make retail fun, the better, and also hit a new customer base.”
honoring the city I call home. of A series of collage images featuring model portraits by Cass Bird and innovation by Yahoo. Each piece encapsulates what this brand has become known for — leather and studs, zippers and fringe. This is a celebration of my 20th anniversary since the launch of the iconic remake of the I Love New York shirt.