Fashion has always been a form of self-expression and an indicator of class, culture and personality. It's how you represent yourself to the rest of the world, and the same holds true for the oncoming era of digital fashion. Web3 fashion will be the most immediate means of expressing individuality in the metaverse, and it can be a vehicle for inclusivity in the process.
As the metaverse grows, more designers are dipping their toes into the relatively new world of Web3 fashion. But unlike high street labels or luxury fashion houses, the metaverse’s ability to let anyone design and wear a digital garment has the potential to democratize fashion. Creators can design outfits for their avatars with no middleman, and they can explore unconventional or non-traditional clothing styles in an entirely unique way. True inclusivity — people with diverse tastes and backgrounds designing what feels right for them — can begin with Web3 fashion and how they choose to represent their avatar.
As early adopters begin building out the metaverse and the role Web3 fashion plays within the cities, gender inclusivity must also be taken into consideration. The traditional female-male avatar options are no longer sufficient and gender-neutral avatars should be an option for individuals who consider themselves non-binary. This is a simple but crucial first step that sets the stage for a more inclusive metaverse.
Beyond that, there is a growing call to action to fashion designers encouraging them to create gender-neutral fashion amongst their digital clothing lines. Smaller features or accessories can also play a role in representation. Having garments with pride colors and symbols available throughout the metaverse will encourage and promote inclusivity while inspiring others to join the ranks.
Although no amount of pride symbols can overcome people’s internal prejudices on their own, creating a visual environment that strongly communicates values of tolerance and openness is the first crucial step in creating safe metaverse spaces. This should work in tandem with more reactive procedures like user reporting and banning, similar to what is used across a variety of social media platforms. There's also the option of maintaining a repository of offensive words, which will get a user automatically banned if they mention any of them.
Web3 fashion is more than just a decorative tool for avatars. It can reflect your latest mood, express enthusiasm for a music group or raise awareness of social causes. You can change your attire as often as you like and utilize it as a form of non-verbal communication. It will signal to others your likes and interests and help you to better interact with other users within the metaverse, making fashion a crucial part of the identity of the avatar.
Community building will make the metaverse a safer and more inclusive space. The backbone of any blockchain project is its community, and sophisticated avatars in the metaverse will open these doors.
Community events involving Web3 fashion can also inspire and promote inclusivity. Hosting design and fashion showcases from designers within the community and organizing competitions where individuals can vote on the best creations will have a democratizing and diversifying effect. Holding these events with an emphasis on marginalized communities and different subcultures sends a powerful message that everyone in the community is accepted for who they are while giving budding designers a platform to reach out to a wider audience.
The metaverse has the potential to democratize fashion and support independent designers, but it is not to say that luxury labels will be edged out entirely. They will continue to have their space in both the physical and now digital world as they maintain a strong following in the metaverse. We’ve already seen digital fashion from major labels, such as the Gucci Garden on Roblox or the Fortnite X Balenciaga collaborations. The metaverse has the potential to bring together independent designers making an impact and from there, anything can happen, including partnerships, collaborations, unique launches and community growth through fan enthusiasm.
Instead of having the luxury brands segregated to Rodeo Drive or Fifth Avenue, more people will have access and be able to interact with what is typically a very exclusive experience. Individuals anywhere in the world can enter into the metaverse, resulting in luxury fashion houses becoming more inclusive.
The established following that luxury brands already have is another advantage for the LGBTQ community as a whole. By venturing into gender-neutral and inclusive fashion, luxury brands can spread the message of acceptance and understanding to a far wider and more mainstream audience.
An inclusive, creative and compelling metaverse can and should be driven by avatar design and digital fashion. It is possible, but it first starts with the education and awareness of the consumers.
Similar to the physical world, the demand for the metaverse to be an inclusive environment will be shaped by the creators within the community. It can be a diverse community rallying around independent designers and exploring digital self-expression through fashion. It’s about thinking bigger than the built-in features inherent to the metaverse in question.
Emerging brands, independent designers and even established brands are going to shape Web3, and Web3 fashion may play a significant role in the development of the metaverse. This is a tool that can lead to dynamic communities and digital expression while promoting acceptance and tolerance — and it should be used to do exactly that.
(Copyright: Cointelegraph Web3 fashion is a gateway to a more inclusive metaverse (cointelegraph.com)