Apparel brand gets 'Second Life'

Tech Culture

American Apparel, a fashion brand known for its ability to make cotton shorts and leotards hip and sexy, has entered a new realm.

American Apparel

The retailer, which has 80 locations nationwide, is adding one more. As soon as this weekend, it will open a store on a private island in the virtual world of "Second Life," Mark Wallace said in a blog Thursday.

The "Second Life" metaverse is inhabited by more than 200,000 people and has a marketplace that supports millions of U.S. dollars in monthly transactions. This commerce is handled with the in-world currency, the Linden dollar, which can be converted to U.S. dollars.

Linden Lab opened "Second Life" to the public in 2003.

The unusual move of placing a real-world entity into the fantasy realm of 'SL' has generated some hype among bloggers.

The action was initiated when someone from American Apparel approached popular 'SL' architect Aimee Weber about opening a virtual version of the clothes store, according to Wallace.

Weber, who designed the building, said it was based on the fashion label's Tokyo showroom, Wallace reported. The sleek, mostly glass structure is shaped like two stacked boxes, and features lighting that changes at virtual nightfall.

Weber, famous for dressing SL avatars in the daring, ultramodern fashions of her clothing brand Preen, said she and several other designers created the styles to follow the tradition of American Apparel's real-world fashions.

The retailer's use of eye-catching colors and revealing cuts, though conservative in comparison with the racy, barely there styles sported by 'SL' avatars, reports Wallace, fit with SL's culture, which revolves around the pursuit of sex and fashion.

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