Digital agency Dept creates limited edition AR puffer jacket in Snapchat

Dept: puffer jackets are available to try-on in via Snapchat
Dept: puffer jackets are available to try-on in via Snapchat

The initiative uses NFTs and Snapchat body-tracking to showcase the value of digital ownership and virtual goods.

Digital agency Dept has created an augmented reality puffer jacket, making use of non-fungible tokens (NFTs) and Snapchat's full body-tracking tool, in an initiative to help brands better understand the value of virtual fashion and goods, while highlighting the burgeoning trend for digital ownership.

A limited number of NFT virtual puffer jackets are available to try-on in AR on Snapchat. Designed by Dept-owned marketing technology agency, Byte, the "gravity-defying" 3D jacket features bold, bright animations of Dept's logo. Byte was bought by Dept in February 2021

Using Snapchat's full body-tracking tool, Byte also created an AR lens so that the jacket's buyers can post clips of themselves to the platform wearing the limited edition item while on the move.

NFTs allow people to buy and sell ownership of unique digital items and keep track of who owns them using the blockchain. Dept created its NFTs on NFT Showroom, a digital art marketplace built on the Hive blockchain. When someone buys one of the Dept NFTs they will own a video render of the jacket, and be able to unlock the Lens Studio design files.

The virtual puffer and Snapchat lens are available to buy as part of Dept's ongoing Dept Apparel monthly drop, which offers the agency's global workforce streetwear from sustainable fabrics, recycled materials, dead-stock and vintage items.

Isabel Perry, director of technology, Byte, said: "Social media users have been hungry for virtual fashion and goods for some time now, a trend that ramped up during the pandemic. And now that Snapchat has released its new body-tracking tool, people are better able to showcase their virtual items across social platforms.

"What's more, after Beeple's Everydays: The First 5,000 Days artwork auctioned at Christie's as an NFT worth $69m, it's clear that NFT-powered digital ownership is something brands need to start thinking about. So we wanted to use the next Dept Apparel drop to unite these trends as a way of powerfully showcasing the future of shoppable AR."

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