Dolce & Gabbana has reportedly sold its nine-piece digital NFT collection for 5.7 million dollars.
Sold alongside some physical couture items, the brand displayed and auctioned its digital ‘Collezione Genesi’ collection on the digital luxury marketplace UNXD, according to The New York Times. Since the announcement of the collection, the Ethereum cryptocurrency rose 10 percent, making the collection worth 6 million dollars in total.
The collection, made up of five physical designs and four digital creations, was a collaboration with UNXD. It’s founder and chief executive Shashi Menon was the one to go to Dolce & Gabbana with the original idea. With Dolce & Gabbana designing, UNXD created the virtual versions of the physical designs, including two versions of The Dress from a Dream designed in both gold and silver. The Dress from a Dream: Gold sold for 225.5 Ether, or 820,000 dollars.
Other virtual items included are an emerald green man’s suit, called The Glass Suit, and a crown called The Impossible Tiara. In a statement seen by The New York Times, Dolce & Gabbana said that the crown was made from “gems that can’t quite be found on Earth”. The Impossible Tiara was sold to an anonymous buyer called Pranksy for 99.99 Ether - over 350,000 dollars.
Speaking to The New York Times, Pranksy affirmed his belief in NFTs. “NFTs in fashion have huge potential, especially when linked - as D & G has - to the physical.”
The highest sale of the collection was The Doge Crown, a headdress decorated with seven blue sapphires and 142 diamonds. Going for 423.50 Ether, the equivalent amount in dollars is around 1.25 million. “There were only nine, sold at once,” said Menon when explaining the high prices of the pieces, “people can use them in the metaverse and have physical experiences, too.”
The record breaking sale has set Dolce & Gabbana at the forefront of the fashion NFT market. Cancelled in 2018 over offensive statements about race, sexuality and size - eventually reaching its climax when the brand released a video in China featuring a Chinese model eating spaghetti with chopsticks - Dolce & Gabbana seem to be moving forward once more.
The NFT market is becoming increasingly popular in the fashion industry. In April, Kate Moss released three video NFTs, showing her going about daily tasks. Sleep With Kate, a video of her napping, sold for around 5 Ether, or 18,000 dollars. Moss donated all the proceeds to charity.
Other brands such as Gucci and Burberry have also dipped their toes in the virtual NFT pond; Gucci with its three channel video loop Aria, and Burberry with its limited edition NFT collection for Mythical Games’ multiplayer online game Blankos Block Party. The former sold for 20,000 dollars, the latter for 375,000.
The Dolce & Gabbana sale, however, is far from the most lucrative NFT purchase. “The Beeple sale was an inflection point for crypto art, and it started a huge boom,” said Menon. Beeple, as he is known online, or Mike Winkelmann, sold his unique NFT artwork for a total of 69 million dollars. Called Everydays: the First 5000 Days, Winkelmann creates a new image everyday, with 2021 being the fourteenth year of the project. When it was auctioned off by Christie’s in March, the legitimizing presence of the auction house shows how much the NFT market will continue to grow.
“The Beeple sale was an inflection point for crypto art, and it started a huge boom,” said Menon. Fashion NFTs are rising in price point, and so unsurprisingly, Dolce & Gabbana is continuing its NFT investment. By the end of the month, the brand is looking to introduce DGFamily, a crypto community, and an NFT collection of virtual jewel boxes.
“These prices are not surprising,” said Nick Jushchyshyn, the program director for Virtual Reality and Immersive Media at Drexel University, speaking to The New York Times. “It makes perfect sense that there would be an NFT collector in the world who would value it.”