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by Alex Brzezicka

Get dressed in digital, the metaverse awaits.

Jump into our new series featuring fresh faces who are on the way to define the sounds and aesthetics of the, not so distant, future. The cultural revolution is happening now. We don’t want you to miss any of it. Let’s push boundaries together.

Remember spending hours glued to the computer screen and choosing the perfect outfit for your Sims? Or obsessing over Clueless and Cher’s match-making computer closet? We know you secretly wished you could wear it all (so did we). Today, childhood dreams can come true. Welcome to the realm of cyber fashion, the trend has made waves during the pandemic. Even the biggest fashion houses went digital. Balenciaga deepfaked their SS22 runway, Angel Chen created Akira inspired post-apocalyptic CGI catwalk and half of Fashion Weeks migrated to the digital spheres. The boundary between physical and pixel matters becomes more and more blurry with every scroll and every show. Shortly, we’ll find ourselves fawning over garment choices in Metaverse.

For any present and future outfit dilemmas, there’s Tribute Brand. A contactless couture fashion house, founded by Gala Marija Vrbanic and directed by a mysterious collective from Zagreb, Croatia. Influenced by video games, they’ve digitalized the idea of designing virtual pieces only: they believe that the future will be online. That’s why it’s the platform where we can express our identity, experiment with self-image and aesthetics; there’s no gender, size or sex restriction; no shipping and no waste. It just might be the most sustainable brand on the market right now. All you need to do is to pick a piece and send your photos. Be quick, even though it’s virtual, the stock is limited. If we can pay for new equipment for our game character, why not for our own costumes? Tribute Brand also allows us to get creative with customs. No wonder that Prince Dru Nicola Formichetti and Kim Petras were showing off their digi-garms in the early stages of the brand’s existence.

From Matrix on LSD inspired silhouettes to sculptural latex-like gowns, Tribute Brand’s imagination is boundless. It’s like stepping into a Black Mirror and The Devil Wears Prada crossover world: disturbingly dystopian but undeniably stunning. We chatted to the anonymous team behind the project to find out all about their hopes and dreams for future fashion domination.

What is Tribute Brand?

Tribute Brand is a high-end digital fashion brand and a software development fashion tech-house known for its characteristic contactless & cyber aesthetics.

Where did the idea for cyber-clothing come from?

Our founder Gala was spending most of her time as a kid playing video games. Thing she liked the most there was dressing up her characters. Since then, she was thinking of a way how she could be a part of that space too. 5 years ago, she came up with the idea of an AR app where people could wear digital clothing as an added layer to their physical experience, and this is how everything started evolving.

The fashion industry seems to be in need of revolution. If you were to lead it, how would it look?

Physical clothing, and this sort of started happening, will focus on quality crafted pieces made out of most advanced materials providing you a perfect function, while fashion will go totally off-limits in the virtual space, freed from the barriers were set by the functional aspect in the physical life.

What are you working on right now?

A couple of things. Apart from focusing on developing new Tribute Brand lines, we also founded a fashion tech house YCY, that is mostly focusing on developing our in-house tech for various digital fashion use cases.

Every artist has their muse. Who is a source of inspiration for you?

Lance Vance

What should be the role of the new-gen creators in modern society?

The role of the new gen creators in modern society should be to use all available, new developed tools/technology and internet to reconsider past through its sustainability, labour values, and production context.

The creative industry is built on odd part-time jobs, free internships, all-nighters and tons of energy-boosters to get through all the turmoil of making or breaking it. Was it a struggle to get to this point in your career and build the brand?

There is a challenge in passing those obstacles that may distort your vision, and this happens everywhere, not just in the creative industries.

What’s the message that you want to send to the industry?

Certain things from the past are still relevant, we don’t believe in innovation as something necessary. At Tribute Brand we often ‘hack’ items that we like and find relevant. We want to make them accessible to the bigger audience.

Where do you want to see yourself in five years?

We would like to support and be a major part of this new space that is currently being developed.

Generation Tomorrow features new faces who are on the way to define, not so distant, creative future and shake society up a little. Who would be your choice?

Everyone who is paving the way to make this happen.

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