Josie Natori is walking around the metaverse, among racks of luxury dresses, dragon-printed robes, leopard miniskirts and lacy tank tops, all from her nameplate brand.
There are also books, artwork, mannequin forms and even a digital version of the long black desk the designer uses in her physical office. Her avatar, meanwhile, is dressed to the nines (not unlike the attire she often dons in the physical world) in a fitted black dress, big hoop earrings with her son’s dog, Stevie, in tow.
“I was very impressed, really,” Natori, founder and chief executive officer of the Natori brand, told WWD. “I have to just say, it made me smile. I mean, what do I know of that world, you know? I’m the least techie person. [But] it’s so exciting to see that adorable [avatar]. I think it’s fun.”
Natori’s first adventure in the metaverse comes by way of a partnership with the digital fashion brand House of Blueberry — which sells digital apparel and accessories for consumers’ avatars — on Roblox. Starting Thursday, the Natori store will open on the gaming platform, featuring the House of Blueberry x Natori collection. But it’s more than just a digital closet. In addition to the 20 digital fashion assets for sale, the “Natori wing to the House of Blueberry,” will capture the entire spirit of the Natori brand, according to Mishi McDuff, founder and chief executive officer of House of Blueberry.
“With digital spaces, it’s all about the experience,” she explained. “You can’t just create products and not provide an experience for them. That’s what we did here. And that goes a long way — the authenticity of the experience. That’s what sells the product. And there’s a great story to tell here. You can see the whole East-meets-West aesthetic of the brand and how it’s translated into the metaverse without the limits of the physical world. We have a ton of respect for Josie Natori, for what she built and I believe that the Roblox community is going to feel the same.”
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