Now users of Linden Labs’ online virtual world Second Life have no excuse for their avatars going around in knockoffs: they can get the real deal. Famed fashion designer Giorgo Armani has opened up shop in the virtual world, with the idea of eventually enabling residents to by virtual versions of Armani designs using Second Life’s in-world currency, the Linden Dollar.
Users will also be able to connect directly from Armani’s in-world store to the designer’s just-launched online store if they’d prefer to set hands on those goods in the real world. The in-world store is modeled on the designer’s flagship retail location in Milan, Italy.
"Finally, I can really be in two places at once," the designer said in a statement. He plans to operate an in-world avatar himself to celebrate the store’s opening.
Armani isn’t the only fashion name getting into online worlds: Donna Karan and cosmetics chain Sephora have announced plans to set up digs in the online paper-doll site Stardoll. The idea behind Stardoll is that members create online Internet versions of themselves, which they can dress up and accessorize in a wide variety of costumes. Of course, then the participants can spend endless hours talking to each other about their outfits. Stardoll currently attracts about 6 million monthly visitors, but Donna Karan and Sephora mark the first real-world product lines to be available on the site, which until now has been populated with fictional fashion lines. Users can pay for on-site currency called "Star Dollars," which are available at a 10-to-1 basis with U.S. dollars. A DKNY outfit with booties, cargo pants, and sequined top is priced at about 30 Star Dollars.
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