Ralph Lauren 4D: Fashion Future or Fizzling Fad

New York Fashion Week. It never fails to impress. With hundreds of new designs and styles making their debut for Spring 2015, Ralph Lauren Polo for Women decided to make things interesting. On Monday night, the brand created a whole new dimension for fashion week. While the many designers, shows and styles for fashion week are all very unique the format is generally the same. They all have a venue decorated creatively to encompass the theme for their collection and models walking the runway displaying the clothes to the audience. But Ralph Lauren Polo decided to break tradition, they held their show out in central park and rather than having real life models display the collection, they decided to take on a new dimension. This year the collection was displayed via hologram projected onto shooting water fountains much like the World of Color show featured at Disneyland.

In this new format the brand was able to do something no traditional fashion show could do. The show was able to feature changing, and life like New York backdrops such as Central Park, the Brooklyn Bridge, and the High Line among others. Some other benefits to the new format include the 4-story tall models making the outfits easy to see and the ability to see them from many angles rather than just from your seat at a traditional show. Another unique feature was that the show was completely open to the public. The brand’s ability to engage a wider audience than just the select few who can afford the seats of a normal show is another innovation all on its own.  The entire show was just under 10 minutes was fun, creative, engaging and the truly one of a kind setting itself apart from all the other standard shows but, the question then arises, is this the fashion future or just another fad?

While many praise the show for its innovation and creativity, providing a “breath of fresh air” (Fisher) from the standard show some are still skeptical.  Fashionista.com explains “The problem was that the models and clothes were hard to make out: Because the video was projected onto a fountain and there was a slight breeze, the images were blurred. You could make out a neon pant or a diagonally striped skirt, but you couldn’t tell what fabric it was made out of or who was wearing it. (Indvik). With these problems presented I realized maybe there is a traditional show for a reason. While technologically advanced and fun to see it really is not the best way to see the clothes. With the screen like format one cannot see the true nature of the outfits, like fabric, texture or flow that one can see when viewing the clothes themselves like the traditional shows do. So while I like the theory of the new format it does not quite work out in practice so I don’t see the fad to be the future of fashion shows, but rather a fun experience to enjoy. So while the Polo show was effective in terms of brand experience, true fashionistas that care more about the clothes than the presentation will not be impressed. A risky move for the debut of the line but only time will tell if it will pay off in the end.


Indvik, L. (n.d.). RALPH LAUREN’S ‘4D’ WATER SHOW FAILS TO IMPRESS. Retrieved September 11, 2014, from http://fashionista.com/2014/09/ralph-lauren-polo-4d-water-show

Fisher, L. (2014, September 9). Polo Ralph Lauren Takes Fashion Week To The Future. Retrieved September 11, 2014, from http://www.harpersbazaar.com/fashion/fashion-week/polo-ralph-lauren-4D-fashion-show-spring-2015

Ralph Lauren. (2014, September 9). THE OFFICIAL RALPH LAUREN 4D HOLOGRAPHIC WATER PROJECTION. Retrieved September 11, 2014, from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ugBbTiBmZ2g

2 thoughts on “Ralph Lauren 4D: Fashion Future or Fizzling Fad

  1. I thought this was a really cool, innovative concept, but I also agree that it may not be the best idea for this type of industry. The point of fashion shows is not only to get the name/brand promoted, but to give people a close detailed look of samples for the upcoming season. They want to be able to see the quality of the line and with the hologram it just isn’t as detailed I feel like. I do think thought that this concept could be used in the future, but it would need some improvements. I think one thing that they could’ve done to improve this would be to have the hologram as a backdrop or something and then also have a normal runway with the actual models there debuting the clothes etc. That might not be as cost effective for the company though. I just definitely think that if they want this concept to stick that they will need to work on a few things.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I agree that this may have not been the first choice of fashion show for industry professionals. However, I do think it reached a new audience. I would not have gone out of my way to watch Polo’s MBFW runway show had it been in the typical format, but now, here I am watching their fashion show because they used an innovative format.


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