Fashion & the Future

Below is a letter from friend and neighbor Jeff Woodland. With Jeff's permission, I am posting because I think his ideas are interesting and I'm curious what everyone else thinks :) Comment below if you'd like to chime in. 


Hello Avi,

I think it is wonderful what you are doing.  I am so rooting for your company’s success.

So, I had a thought that might be of value to you.  It stems from an observation I made at work.

The world is becoming a more transparent place. At the same time, more and more people will want the right to choose anonymity. Everyone will be a celebrity.

Technologies are racing ahead that will automatically recognize people’s faces, which drives the recognition.  Social media is also a factor.

This can be a good thing - such as catching thieves on camera and spotting them somewhere else.  Or, when you walk into a favorite store like Eastern Mountain Sports but don’t buy anything, and then receive an email later that gives you a 20% off coupon.

Yet, being recognized everywhere can suck.  Look at celebrities.  They pay premiums to remain below the radar — e.g. when they go on holiday or out for dinner, they choose places that respect their privacy, and those places are typically more expensive.

This is why I thought of the Wild Mantle.  I strongly suspect that a fashion trend will emerge where people choose to cover their face to escape the constant recognition.   This shouldn’t be confused with burkas, where women typically have no choice but to remove their identities in public.  (brief snarky aside - I am alls for burkas only if the husband and wife rotate wearing it on odd and even months.)

I envision a modern fashion like Venice in the 1500s, where masks were more common, and were fun. The wealthy could attend street fairs without being recognized. There are stories of women wearing men’s costumes to see more of the world.

Net net, marketing the choice of feminine anonymity via the Wild Mantle might be a new niche.  The question is the timing.  This year? Next year? The year after?  It will arrive. Not sure when.

Best regards and good luck with your business,


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