“The world needs an alternative to the fashion system so we wanted to make clothes that people would still want to wear but that would be totally zero waste,” says Vrbanic. For her, the appeal of digital fashion also lies in the freedom to play with new materials and silhouettes, unhampered by the constraints of the material world. “Digital fashion gives you totally new possibilities, like wearing things you couldn’t even walk in in real life.”
Although there is no physical stock, Tribute produces each ‘style’ in limited quantities, and once they’re sold out, they don’t restock them. “It wouldn’t make sense to have an unlimited number of digital styles,” says Vrbanic. “Fashion is all about having thing that are limited and that few people have”.
Elsewhere Dress-X, which launched last August in San Francisco, posits itself as the first multi-band eCommerce site for digital fashion and offers over 600 digital pieces by 60 different designers, which range from quite realistic-looking graphic T-shirts to avant-garde, body-swamping dresses at the extreme end.
The brand’s motto is “don’t shop less, shop digital fashion”, and they see the technology evolving to eventually allow people to wear digital clothes not just in photos but on video calls too. “Our big goal is to sell a billion digital fashion items,” says Dress-X co-founder Daria Shapovalova. “We hope to replace at least one percent of physical items with the digital alternative for cases when consumers are buying clothes for content creation or things like online conferences.”