Fashion Talk
Daniel Avakian

Daniel Avakian

Designer
Daniel Avakian

I get my creative nutrition from art, music and popular culture

Daniel Avakian is an Australian-born and internationally renowned women’s and men’s designer. Known for impeccable tailoring and a contemporary approach to design, Daniel’s designs are carefully curated to anchor the modern customer’s wardrobe. Offering both value and versatility, every piece is designed for people with an eye for quality and detail. He has dressed many Australian and international celebrities and Influencers such as Rita Ora, Charlie Sheen, Jennifer Hawkins, Sophie Monk, Mel B, Christie Whelan Browne, Tess Haubrich, and many more. In an Interview with Kiran Sahija, the designer discusses about the inspiration behind his collection, Real-Time Fashion, NFTs (Non-Fungible Tokens), and his projects.

Fibre2Fashion: What intrigued you towards the fashion Industry and motivated you to start your own label?

Daniel Avakian:

I was always interested in art and business and ended up studying fine arts at university when I finished high school; however, I dropped out of it! My girlfriend at the time suggested me about fashion design. I saw I could combine my love of art and business, and so sometime at the end of 1999 I decided to enroll in the Whitehouse Institute of Design in Sydney, and the rest is history.

Fibre2Fashion: Where do you get your creative nutrition? What fashion do you follow?

Daniel Avakian:

I get my creative nutrition from art, music and popular culture. I’m a big movie buff and a lover of beautiful art, and so I draw my inspiration from these mediums and convert, for example, one of my favourite films into a collection.

I don’t really follow current fashion. However, I do look to the original 20th century designers for inspiration such as YSL, Mugler, and Paco Rabanne. That’s where I draw a lot of my inspiration, and over the years have been able to create my own handwriting as a designer.

Fibre2Fashion: Please walk us through the concept of Real-Time Fashion and how can consumers have access to it?

Daniel Avakian:

At this stage, the Real Time Fashion (RTF) concept provides B2B and B2C services producing virtual product developments and product presentations including metaverse ready collaterals.

The RTF concept integrates the latest fashion-relevant and market-ready 3-D technologies coupled with a robust and scalable supply chain, enabling fast-to-market apparel 3-D workflows including 3-D design suite & style book development, remote customer 3-D body-scanning (enabling consumer garment fit customisation and thus confidence), photo-realistic hyper-real animated avatars presenting fashion products in true to life imagery, virtual showrooms plus virtual retail environments (including virtual concessions in bricks & mortar stores and virtual retail stores) that are consumer interactive, plus metaverse ready fashion NFTs.

The next stage for RTF is to take these virtual collaterals and experiences and provide B2B clients with B2C consumer commercialisation opportunities through a multivendor marketplace (presenting the virtual collaterals) plus an NFT Gallery.
The RTF concept allows a unique customer experience (CX) in interactive and immersive virtual environment/s catering to new and developing consumer shopping trends.

Actually, we envisage virtual retail becoming not only an extension to bricks & mortar but potentially a much more convenient alternative to bricks & mortar retail and as such enable retailers and/or brands to be able to visually merchandise and display their 3-D fashion pieces to consumers inside an interactive digital retail space.

Fibre2Fashion: Can you provide us some information about the development of NFTs and how virtual retail might alter the fashion business in the near future?

Daniel Avakian:

In terms of the fashion NFTs that we create, we develop amazing NFT art and photo-realistic product/garment designs which renders onto a hyper-realistic animated avatars. Our team can also create a true-to-life 3-D virtual retail environment/s (be it luxe, street, futuristic, etc) and place the photo-realistic hyper-real animated avatar/s into these environments to create a unique, interesting, immersive and interactive shopping CX – all online and thus more convenient for consumers.

Virtual retail provides omni-channel retailers the opportunity to present better online shopping CX.

Fibre2Fashion: Could you share some insights on your participation in the upcoming NYFW? How are you going to present your collection and what new can be expected?

Daniel Avakian:

Daniel Avakian's participation at NYFW Spring Summer 2023 collections will take the US/global audience into the future with the Daniel Avakian NYFW debut via a digital edit of ‘The Tears in the Rain’ collection presented at After Pay Australian Fashion Week in Sydney in May 2022. The NYFW Spring Summer 2023 will be the first fashion show to feature virtual models and offer a ‘real time fashion’ retail experience on an international runway.

The collection is going to be live-streamed on Monday, September 12, 2022 at 5 p.m. (GMT-4) via NYFW.com and will feature ‘Commerce Enabled Video Technology’ for customers to be able to purchase directly off the runway.

Inspired by the 1982 film Blade Runner, it features an extraordinary twist worthy of the iconic futuristic film presenting real-time fashion on both human models and integrating photo-realistic, hyper-realistic 3D virtual avatar models.

The Tears of Rain show ushers in a brave new technological world for fashion and offers a true feast for the senses.

Daniel Avakian’s physical runway show will be digitally extended with virtual styling, employing ground-breaking and (reputedly) the world’s best 3D technologies. True to life of a virtual Daniel Avakian store and currently available for sale pieces set in New York City will instantly appear at the show’s start, followed by a catwalk that symbiotically integrates human and virtual avatars on the runway.

The human catwalk showcases 36 designs, while the virtual catwalk features 8 designs entirely created and rendered in 3D and modelled by photo-realistic hyper-real animated avatars. The new virtual edit will feature additional pieces to further demonstrate the designers pioneering vision to bring metaverse ready hyper-realistic products to the mainstream consumer.

Fibre2Fashion: As seen in your collection, could you please elaborate on why the price of NFTs are higher than the actual physical outfits?

Daniel Avakian:

Today NFTs, when compared to actual physical products, are often perceived/presented as ‘artworks’ rather than fashion products and can be both significantly more expensive due to:

Collectability and uniqueness based on single or limited production of NFT imagery and thus perceived ‘collectable value’.

Creative novelty and time spent in creation.

Unlockable content included on purchase which could include other asset/s such as a garment.

Less expensive if less sophisticated and significantly duplicatable and being sold for Web 3.0/metaverse social media use.

Fibre2Fashion: Tell us about your few favourite projects?

Daniel Avakian:

We have been involved in a few exciting projects recently.

The first happened earlier this year with Rolls Royce (RR) motor vehicles in a RR A-PAC bespoke luxury fashion experience that is aligned to the launch of their RR Ghost that offers many bespoke features. This opportunity is a collaboration between Rolls Royce x Daniel Avakian and we call it the ‘Masterpiece Experience’.

The Masterpiece Experience sees our team at DA traveling with Rolls Royce to selected Rolls Royce destinations around Australia for events by Rolls Royce for their customer. During each event, our job is to provide Rolls Royce customers a unique bespoke and couture design experience with myself and my team. Also, at each activation the Rolls Royce customer goes for a test drive in the latest model Rolls Royce car.

Daniel Avakian also collaborated with BTC Markets on an exclusive NFT based on a couture dress featured in the Daniel Avakian runway show, on Wednesday, May 11 at Carriage works, the home of AAFW.

Unlike most fashion NFTs, the BTC Markets and Daniel Avakian collaboration presented the couture dress both physically on a real model and virtually in a photo-realistic hyper-real animated avatar format. The NFT dress is available on Daniel Avakian virtual retail store for immediate purchase, both as a real garment and as an NFT minted on OpenSea.

Fibre2Fashion: How would you relate past and present fashion trends?

Daniel Avakian:

I would say that social media has provided a very unique platform to society. Being able to express yourself on social media visually has been prolific in bringing back past fashion trends into the present, but also requiring global trends and inspirations (as promoted by influencers and celebrities) to be available in real-time – and the only way to achieve real-time fashion is through virtual/digital fashion.

As we all know in fashion, past errors and trends are interpreted alongside cultural changes in society.

Fibre2Fashion: Any advice that you would like to share with aspirants trying to break into digital fashion and the metaverse world?

Daniel Avakian:

For aspiring designers, trying to break into the digital fashion and the metaverse world now is the most amazing time to be involved. We are at the starting point of a limitless future where digital/virtual fashion can be created and communicated to the world in days rather than months – not just as metaverse-ready assets, but also ricocheting back into the real world – and as such will create limitless opportunities for innovation and designers’ creativity.

Any advice that you would like to share with aspirants trying to break into digital fashion and the metaverse world?

Published on: 12/09/2022
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