May 30, 2015

Style + Tech: ModCloth Snags Velvet Brigade, Launches Cool Design Contest

In style + tech news: San Francisco-based ModCloth announced yesterday that it has acquired Velvet Brigade, a company that caught our eye earlier this year with its cool crowdsourcing platform for emerging fashion designers. So what does this mean for you – and for independent fashion?

Now that ModCloth has hired the team behind Velvet Brigade, i.e. co-founders Lindsay McConnon and Jena Wang, the independent fashion juggernaut is going to incorporate the startup’s fashion design contests into its own offerings and bring a more targeted social media push to the competition.

For those interested in style and technology, what it means is that the Velvet Brigade co-founders were on to something: crowdsourced fashion is definitely a trend to continue watching. The trick, of course, will be getting enough people to submit designs and actively promote them via social media for the contests to have a meaningful level of participation.

But given ModCloth’s popularity and avid fan base (they’ve got 400,000 Facebook fans and counting), we’re optimistic about the potential for success here – and actual sales of items designed based on submitted sketches.

If you’re an aspiring designer, you can submit a sketch of a design based on ModCloth founder Susan’s moodboard above. She’ll pick her favorites, which will then be voted on via Facebook. The designers behind the five winning sketches will win $500, see the design produced and sold on ModCloth and have their names printed on the labels. Complete contest details are here.

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