It’s getting crowded out there. From the innumerable free fashion apps to online style advice sites, it seems like a plethora of new fashion-centric start-ups are launching every week. What out there is really worth your time? For our part, a few multi-platform, social media-focused online outlets have caught our attention.
1. Have to Have: This one is a registry for your life. Add products (and get markdown alerts), follow friends (or fashionable strangers), and have access to each others’ lists. This last part is highly encouraged; rather than just acting as a personal tracker, the point of Have to Have is to make it easy to organize what you can get for others and when, and more importantly, to easily know exactly what those things are.
2. Chicisimo: Know what’ll shake you out of the online fashion doldrums? Going abroad. Chicisimo originated in Spain but is available in seven languages, and everyone on there looks like a model, or at least ready for their Sartorialist close-up. Users rank others’ style — and linked ecommerce lets them buy the looks they like for themselves — which in itself is nothing new, at this point. However, the women using the site post well-shot candids and they have great fashion. Even if you don’t vote, post, or get involved in any way, head to Chicisimo for visually-driven style inspiration.
3. VFiles: You have to request to join this one, but we promise that when the invitation comes through, it’ll be worth your time. Founded by Julie Anne Quay, a former editor at V magazine, VFiles features a virtual library of every issue of Visionaire, V, VMan, Project X, and Stop. Other magazines, like the A&F Quarterly, appear in more select form. There are also original video series and a pending sister site in China.
So where’s the social media? Well, the on-file stock of titles is only a springboard. Users are encouraged to upload their own images, GIFs, etc., as well as tag and share existing files, to create their own “VFiles,” centered around various style topics. While the site is launching with a plethora of editorial imagery, it hopes to eventually tilt the ratio to 90% user-generated content. We think the socially-inclined site mixing grassroots fashion with high-end editorial work sounds awesome. If you’re still waiting on your login information, check out the very cool VFiles blog.