How to Dress Code – The Creation of Fashion for Tech

by Constanze Bilogan - 8 May 2017

There are certain things that simply shouldn’t go together. Yet, miraculously, they do: Think about peanut butter and jelly, Stan and Laurel or more on topic, fashion and tech.

Both of these departments are part of what make up Zalando’s DNA and are essential to our daily work. Both also have clear opinions of the other, which make a collaboration between the two not the most seamless of tasks.

Our platform is powered by tech, and it was about time that the forces of the company unite to make fashion more inclusive to those who work behind the scenes and build our fashion-as-a-service platform: Techies. With that in mind, we came together to create a fashion line that lives up to their expectations, meets their style criteria and makes them look good.

The fact that there was a clothing line being specially made for tech on the horizon had our entire tech department at Zalando excited about the endeavour. They might not all be interested in fashion, but still they wear clothes.

Surveys, focus groups, MVPs and think tanks followed and gave birth to a holistic, loved, basic urban fashion line made by zLabels for Tech: We dress code. A clothing line of smart styles, clean design, some gadgets and 100% functionality – all the things that, according to our research, matter to techies.

Not only did the creation of We dress code. unite the worlds of fashion and tech, but it also brought together different people and personalities from all over Zalando: Designers, UX, Product, Tech Employer Branding, all types of engineers, community managers (just to name a few), with the Creative Department ultimately taking care of launching the brand with a BANG.

This project was an exciting and challenging task for creatives like us, who usually think and create for fashion in the context of glossy visuals and fashion shoppers in mind. The approach with We dress code. was a different one: How do we speak Tech, a language that’s not our native tongue? Focus groups with in-house Techies provided us with input en masse: Models? No, thanks. Fashion communication? Doesn’t reach them.

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Tech talked, we listened. We created an awesome stage for the launch of We dress code. featuring influencers, with claims that really speak Tech (“buttondown=validObject;”), a fun web series about Tech life, on top of highlighting the quirks of wearing We dress code. The posting of wild posters all over Berlin to create maximum impact was the icing on the cake – all without drawing from the aforementioned clichés.

Our new brand, We dress code., is not only for our in-house Techies, the initial inspiration for all our efforts, but for tech enthusiasts, programmers and startup whizkids from all over Europe.

See the full collection now at www.wedresscode.com.

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