2016 Fashion Awards BFC

FASHION FOR ALL: The British Fashion Council has teamed with Google Arts & Culture on a digital educational platform to launch ahead of the Fashion Awards on Dec. 5.

The free initiative — which supports the BFC’s Education Foundation — is aimed at showcasing the history and heritage of British fashion and will feature content from British designers and industry figures.

BFC and Google have curated content in the form of digital exhibitions and experiences highlighting a range of British brands from Burberry to Vivienne Westwood with videos, multimedia shows and virtual reality experiences. Highlights include a couture dress from Alexander McQueen’s spring 2017 line — users are able to zoom in on details — alongside a 360-degree video focusing on couture dresses.

Burberry, Manolo Blahnik, Browns, David Bailey, Edward Enninful, Erdem, i-D, J.W. Anderson, Michael Howells, Naomi Campbell, Paul Smith, Stella McCartney, Vivienne Westwood, Harris Tweed, John Lobb, Lochcarron and the Royal School of Needlework are among the brands and individuals to show off their work.

The platform also features archival materials accessible by color and time frame. The database includes key moments in British fashion, such as Kate Moss’ first runway debut in London, profiles on fashion industry names such as Naomi Campbell and Christopher Bailey, as well as behind-the-scenes access to the Royal School of Needlework and Brora Cashmere.

Meanwhile, journalist Sarah Mower has directed a short film on 360-VR, which highlights industry creatives such as Campbell, Enninful, Anya Hindmarch and Joan Burstein as they talk about their careers. For London Fashion Week: Men in January, Dylan Jones, Jim Chapman and Nick Knight will contribute to a “Spotlight on Menswear”segment.

To coincide with the launch, Paul Smith has created a special Google Cardboard — a virtual reality platform that has a fold out cardboard viewer — and has also designed displays that focus on the five objects that resonate with his label.

“The Internet has been an incredible resource for opening up the fashion industry to a new audience, giving young people access to information not previously available,” Caroline Rush, chief executive officer of the British Fashion Council. “This collaboration represents a new step, bringing together diverse information into one, engaging place. We hope this legacy project will not only inspire but also educate — allowing young people wanting to get into fashion to see the breadth of individuals, skills and careers that make up this multifaceted industry.”

The educational platform is accessible via desktop, laptop and mobile as well as through the Google Arts & Culture mobile app on iOS and Android. Google Arts & Culture is a platform that offers a digital experience in art, history and culture and is a part of the Google Cultural Institute.