“Money can’t buy you style but VILLOID can”
Following its launch or, rather, relaunch in September of this year, Villoid has become one of the most popular fashion apps around. It was created by Jeanette Dyhre Kvisvik, who originally released it in Norway about a year ago. She was modestly successful with it there but, in an age where the opinion of an Instagram star has a wider influence than that of a tech expert – especially when it comes to fashion, Kvisvik knew it was the power of celebrity that would really sell her product. Enter Alexa Chung: presenter, model, fashion muse, and all-round cool gal. Her involvement in the app has led to a huge increase in the number of users and has given Villoid some serious style credentials. Chung had an unsurprisingly limited involvement in the technical side of things but you can see her kooky touches all over the design.
There are many other apps that do almost exactly the same thing as Villoid and have a very similar layout. They allow you to browse fashion goods from different brands and stylists, ‘like’ items of clothing, and buy the pieces you’ve seen. The USP of Villoid, in addition to Chung’s involvement, is the creative aspect. In a Pinterest-meets-Instagram kind of way, you can create mood boards to show your followers, who can then like or comment on what you’ve done. The good thing about this is that, not only can you see which items are trending, as you can on almost all fashion apps, but you can also see how your favourite fashionistas are wearing said items and what’s inspiring their choices. Villoid allows users to upload photos of whatever they want to a mood board so people can show what inspired them to put a certain outfit together; expect lots of movie characters, landscapes and frothy coffees. The mood board feature makes the user experience feel more like online dressing-up, trying different things together like you might at home or in a shop, and less like internet browsing.
Villoid is very user friendly, Chung’s personal brand of cool is stamped all over it (she posts a lot), and there are really interesting and inspiring boards to see. The ‘buy’ option sends you to the relevant website so you can’t actually purchase on the app like you can on the likes of The Net Set, and there are a couple of glitches with the sign-in process (I’m often asked to verify my email address), but it’s pretty fun and actually quite useful. The app is currently available on the istore and the Android version is set to be released early next year.