Is Animal Crossing’s virtual world now the new fashion week?

You see a design of a dress or a skirt that you like. You then check whether your size is in stock, right? Wrong. People are no longer looking for designer clothes to dress themselves it seems – they now do it to glam up their virtual avatars.

Animal Crossing, Nintendo’s wildly popular social simulation video game, is becoming a platform for style lovers to express themselves. In the virtual world where players explore, create and customise a second life, fashion is a big focus.

While it started with bootleg creations (fan-created designs inspired by big labels), Animal Crossing has now become a legitimate runway of sorts. And fashion houses have been quick to jump on the bandwagon.

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Earlier this month, Valentino officially partnered with Kara Chung, owner of the Instagram account @animalcrossingfashionarchive, to create custom Valentino clothing for Animal Crossing.

The 20 looks feature everything from colourful men’s shirts made in collaboration with artist, Roger Dean, to fluorescent dresses, VLTN hats and puffer jackets. Each item has been given a unique code that can be entered into the game.

Marc Jacobs also partnered @animalcrossingfashionarchive. The label released six cute looks on Animal Crossing. Like Valentino, all of the virtual designs are available to download for free by players.

It has to be pointed out that unlike other video games, which also allows for the customisation of outfits, Animal Crossing takes it further. It gives players the option to pick out everything: from socks and hats to shoes.

During the recent pandemic lockdown, Animal Crossing became an even bigger hit. Not surprising, as it offered a welcome escape for people who couldn’t venture out of their houses.

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Valentino's custom virtual clothing for Animal Crossing comprise cute and stylish designs.Valentino’s custom virtual clothing for Animal Crossing comprise cute and stylish designs.

The @animalcrossingfashionarchive Instagram account is not the only one making it big because of its virtual fashion. Others that also post Animal Crossing fashion looks like @nookstreetmarket and @crossingtherunway, are also well-received.

The total followers of all three Instagram accounts is now close to 100,000. That’s how popular virtual clothes can be. Even if you may not understand why, you have to accept the fact that they are indeed a huge trend.

A first-ever virtual Animal Crossing fashion show was even announced this week (although, physical fashion weeks have also gone digital-only). Scheduled for May 27, it will see players walk a virtual runway in their best-customised outfits.

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