Google is launching a new fashion Web site with virtual designer boutiques, set to launch this Wednesday. Users will be able to customize their own shop by selecting personal style preferences. We just received our invite from Google (picture above) to the launch party at Skylight Soho on November 17th where “High tech fuses with high fashion” and includes live performances by the Misshapes, Becka Diamond and DJ Earmworm. So more details soon. In the meanwhile, here’s WWD with the exclusive on Boutiques.com:
Google is venturing into fashion with a new Web site and virtual designer boutiques, set to launch Wednesday. The fashion world is abuzz with talk about the venture, according to sources who have been briefed on the search giant’s plans. Anyone will be able to create and share their own personalized shop by selecting style preferences and the looks, brands and items they love — in the end making it easier and more stylish to buy fashion on the Web. The search company has tapped Sarah Jessica Parker to set up her own personalized shop and is reportedly wooing Katie Holmes to do the same. Oscar de la Renta, Tory Burch, Cynthia Rowley, Marchesa, Isaac Mizrahi, Tracy Reese and Erin Fetherston are some of the big names Google has invited to set up their own virtual stores on the site, although shoppers will most likely also be able to draw on a huge variety of fashion brands for sale online to stock their virtual shops. Visitors will not actually complete a purchase on Google, but will click through to a brand’s online store or a retailer who carries the item, such as Saks Fifth Avenue, Barneys New York, Net-a-porter or Yoox. Google executives declined all comment on the site, which is being unveiled Wednesday and celebrated with a party in New York that night at Skylight SoHo. The new site, dubbed — for now — Boutiques.com, is part of a bigger trend toward new retail formats that the Internet and social media have made possible. At its most basic level, the new fashion site will function much like Google Search or Google Shopping under the covers, but the part visitors will see will look like high-end, personalized luxury boutiques — an environment and approach to search and shopping that is more appropriate, efficient and appealing to fashion lovers and designer brands than Google’s existing options. – read more from WWD
Alex has written for Vanity Fair, Barrons, Bloomberg and Condé Nast Traveler.