New digital portal AwaytoMars wants to empower more designers to get their product to market. WGSN’s Catarina Lambranho reports
The fashion industry is an ever-changing environment. With new designers entering the market every day and the advance of social media, it can be hard to stand out against the competition. More importantly, not every designer has the resources at hand to bring their own brand to life.
Enter new digital platform AwaytoMars, the user-created fashion brand, founded by a Brazilian entrepreneur Alfredo Orobio in 2015. The idea? Designers submit their designs to the platform and each crowdfunding attempt has a deadline. At the end of it, the designs with the most likes are then chosen for production and taken to market, and if they sell, the designer receives 20% of the profit.
The crowdfunding platform aims to take the hassle out of production, by handling the technical side of things from manufacturing to production all from their end, so that it’s a risk-free gamble for the designer. The designer gets their product out there, via the AwayToMars sales portal without the struggle, fees and stress of trying to build their own brand.
It is a nice way for younger, cash-strapped designers who just want to see their product out in the market and being worn, and AwayToMars is an accessible platform to make that happen. For founder Orobio, it’s all about democratising fashion and making it more accessible for anyone to make a popular product, within a supported environment. In fact, his idea and concept isn’t even patented – it is meant to be copied – “People say to me: ‘This is a very cool idea, you should patent it’. But it’s the opposite. I want people to copy it. That will be so much more interesting for the future of design” explains Orobio.
It’s an interesting business model and increasingly we are seeing digital start-ups enter and disrupt the traditional clothing making arena, from personalised DIY brands to parodies of the luxury market brands, so watch this space.
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