When it came time to launching fashion’s first “smart” shirt, Polo Ralph Lauren knew it needed to do something special.
The answer: holograms! This past weekend, the Polo Ralph Lauren flagship on Fifth Avenue and 55th Street debuted its interactive, three-dimensional window display, featuring holographic athletes boxing, jumping rope and sweating in the new PoloTech gear, which track a range of stats — including heart rate, breathing depth and recovery, intensity of movement, energy output and stress levels, steps taken and calories burned.
“There's so much more competition today," saysDavid Lauren, senior vice president of Ralph Lauren, the lifestyle brand that his father started in 1967. “We had designers working on fabric and stretchability, and there’s so much detail that goes into everything we do, and we’re copied every second — so how do you make your product stand out so people stop and say, ‘That’s interesting’?”
Sure, you could do it by being the first fashion brand to bring a smart shirt to market — tech brands have tried, to little success, due to poor fit, abrasive fabrics and a lack of style. But having a 3D window display certainly won't hurt.
The new display — which capitalizes on technology Polo used for itslast Fashion Week show, featuring four-story-high holograms of the models traipsing through Central Park — not only speaks to the brand’s devotion to cutting-edge design, but also to consumers’ desires to live healthier lives.
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“Ralph Lauren created the concept store, which was an experience, a lifestyle … walking through the store and imagine living in the clothes as part of the dream,” says Lauren. “With the holograms, people will walk by say ‘I want to live a healthier life; I want to run faster — and that physical well being is part of what fashion can deliver.”