I’m not sure if you realized it, but MAGIC tradeshow is huge. Last week, two convention centers were split up into approximately eight sections:
- WWDMAGIC – all things women’s wear
- S.L.A.T.E. – streetwear labels of the surf, skate, art and music communities, complete with an indoor skate park
- STREET – urban lifestyle apparel, plus a race car gallery
- MENS/WEAR – all things men’s fashion
- FN PLATFORM – the huge shoe showcase presented in partnership with Footwear News
- PROJECT – contemporary fashion lines, each with branded visuals at each booth
- POOLTRADESHOW – the independent designer’s tradeshow
- SOURCING at MAGIC – mainly of international manufacturing, reflecting all points of the fashion supply chain
My favorite section is PROJECT: from giant prints of Betsey Johnson’s smile and Diesel’s “Be Stupid” campaign to stunning displays from up-and-coming contemporary lines, this tradeshow is not only a field for a Fashionista but also a feast for the eyes. For example, there were THREE different runway shows throughout last Tuesday featuring over 25 PROJECT brands! In partnership with Nolcha, eBay Fashion turned heads with three distinct spring/summer 2012 shows, all styled by Andrea Linett: co-founder and former creative director of Lucky Magazine, current creative director of eBay Fashion and the street-style scavenger behind IWantToBeHer.com!
CollegeFashionista: What do you do as creative director of eBay Fashion?
Andrea Linett: It’s a fairly new position – I’m the first person to have it! I was recently called in to change perception; eBay is an amazing fashion destination but it didn’t really look like it and it didn’t feel like it. I always say it’s like this beautiful woman who has a really bad haircut and she needs a makeover; it’s there but everyone needs to see it. The first thing I did was start Style Stories, something we do every week where people talk about their style, what they buy on eBay and it lets you go shopping with them. We also have an editorial every week as well. It’s a lot of work, but fun work. I’ve always been a huge eBay fan, so the fact that I get to make eBay what I think it should be in everyone else’s eyes is amazing.
CF: Where do you think fashion e-commerce is headed?
AL: Fashion e-commerce is getting bigger and bigger. I don’t think it’s going to ever replace stores because people like to go shopping as a hobby, but shopping online is a huge hobby too: “I don’t want to watch TV but fall is just around the corner, so I want to see what shoes are out right now because I don’t want to miss out.” More and more, people are also editorializing their sites so people are getting their editorial content where they’re shopping: eBay knows what they’re talking about, I’m gonna go shop on eBay…that’s the hope.
CF: How important is it for a brand to be online?
AL: If you don’t have an online presence, you’re not living in today. You might be edgy and cool, but you’re not making the kind of sales you should be making or getting the kind of recognition you should be getting. If you sell on eBay, you already have millions of fashion fanatics going crazy on there every day.
CF: Tell me about IWantToBeHer.com!
AL: When I left Lucky, I noticed that a lot of people were tweeting us about the back page – an illustration of me by my best friend since I was 14, Anne Johnston Albert. So we brought it to the web. I’ve always said “I want to be her, I want to be her,” and we added a “real girl” element. We did illustrations of girls I had seen on the street, I’d stop them right there and then. We’re doing a book now! It’s fun because you see someone and you wanna know more about where they got something or you want to know more about them but you can’t, so I wanna ask them everything. And you can be them, you can be just like them.
CF: Any advice for CollegeFashionistas?
AL: College students are the ones who have all the good style, everyone is copying them. I feel like college students are good at knowing what’s going on and how to interpret it. And now there are so many lower priced brands doing amazing things. When I was in college, there weren’t; lower priced brands were crap, so you’d either have to go vintage or be creative. Now, you have more choices because everyone’s doing cool stuff, there’s so much competition. You girls don’t need any help from me!