It looks like the love affair between fashion and videogames - or rather apps - is continuing. In previous posts we looked at the Super Mario inspired garments and accessories from Moschino's S/S 16 collection and at the Louis Vuitton S/S 2016 advertising campaign featuring Lightning, the heroine of role-playing and storytelling game "Final Fantasy". Jeremy Scott at Moschino recently released a small capsule collection inspired by Candy Crush in collaboration with King, its developer. Launched in 2012, the successful saga played on smartphones and tablets, won the heart of millions of fans all over the world. Arriving on time for Coachella, the annual music festival in Indio, California (on this weekend), the Moschino x Candy Crush collection – featuring his-and-hers swimwear, plus a backpack and a smartphone cover with the trademark candy grid and a Moschino logo reinterpreted in the game's retro font – is an authorised and legal partnership celebrating the fifth anniversary of the game.
The most interesting thing about it? Definitely not the fact that there is no subtext in such a collaboration (Candy Crush is popular, so Scott opted to come up with a capsule collection that will appeal to a large number of people and that will hopefully sell - if you can afford it: prices go from €45 for a phone case to €475 for the backpack; swimwear is in between - €125 for men; €188 for women).
There is also nothing new about the main theme - sugar rush madness has indeed been on the runway since 2014, so what's the innovative aspect of this capsule collection? Candy Crush has been around for a few years and items inspired - but not authorised - by the app developer (silicone moulds, T-shirts, smartphone covers, belts and other gadgets) have been available on Aliexpress for quite a while now.
Now, in the past, fashion houses and labels produced something original and then got copied by fast and cheap manufacturers (who in the last few years seem to have become even faster and smarter, copying a detail of a designer dress, such as a patch rather than entire designs...).
Given the fact that Aliexpress resellers got there first, it looks like fashion may be getting the idea from the copyists, but validating it as a legitimate and fully authorised collaboration.
This is actually not the first time a fashion house looks at ideas that, borrowed from the Internet and social media, have been all over Aliexpress (remember Marc Jacobs' laser/space cats T-shirts from his Resort 17 collection Vs the space cat T-shirts on Aliexpress? Which one do you think started producing the laser cats apparel first? View this photo), but it is interesting to wonder what will happen when (smart) unauthorised manufacturers may look for legal partnerships and eventually start producing successful and legal products before fashion houses and labels do so. Guess we will get a satisfactory answer at some point in the (not so distant) future.