“Fashion is changing because
of technology,” Brandy Pham relayed in our chat below, “We need to ask how we can better use technology to help the ecosystem of fashion and other industries instead of slowly killing them.” The growing importance of technology in our personal and professional endeavors has sparked innovation and ideas that focus specifically on the opportunities that come with living and working in a digital age. Today’s story better addresses this important conversation.
We had the opportunity to sit down with brand-builder Brandy Pham, a celebrated jewelry designer and co-founder of the newly launched PLANOLY, which happens to be first ever visual planner/scheduler for Instagram. The app was also created with the premise of giving power back to designers in relation to their content initiatives and goals. In this personal piece, Brandy kindly invited us for a peek into her studio, where she shared her personal and professional journey, insights on the synergy between fashion and technology, and what it’s been like to build two unique products that cater to these two important aspects of our lives. Read on to discover more of her thoughts below, featuring photos by Andy Hoang for The Style Line.
Note: Edits made to story May 1, 2015 to reflect name change from Planogr.am to Planoly
I was born in Kansas,
but raised in Hawaii. Hawaii was the longest place I’ve ever lived next to New York. In between, I’ve lived in all over the U.S. This includes — New Orleans, Houma, Austin, White Hall (outside of Little Rock), Dallas, Tampa, and Miami. Each city was a different experience and a complete culture shock in many ways. My husband and I lived in New York for 7 years.
During that time, I realized how big the world was and that we’re just starting to really experience life! Living in so many places opened up my eyes to different cultures, styles and people…
But New York is where I really found myself. I moved to New York as a wide-eyed, naive, and sheltered young girl;
but I grew up into an adult in New York and because of New York (if that makes any sense). After living and working there, I realized that I wasn’t that girly girl I thought I was… I discovered how minimal and practical I wanted to be in my personal style and lifestyle. Living in such small quarters really made us question everything! We always had to ask, “Do we really need this? Where are we going to put this? Is it really worth it?” Both my husband and I quickly learned that we didn’t want to live in excess, and this really affected the way I started to design, dress and even buy as a consumer.
Brandy Pham Jewelry is my namesake collection
and was born out of our modest apartment in the Lower East Side after I quit my corporate fashion job. My collection is an ode to the city that never sleeps. Buzzing streets are the stomping grounds of effervescent youth and where luxury is in the details… New York City! My designs are thoughtful and polished, but always with some sort of unexpected detail. I love clean and simple designs that are timeless and can be worked into my everyday life. I love the idea that I can pass my jewelry down to my future daughter! I design for myself and wear every single jewelry piece in my collection. So I took the same approach when I created all of the designs (wireframes) and branding for Planoly.
Planoly is the first visual planner for Instagram
with our iOS App, web dashboard, and drag and drop functionality. You can plan your Instagram content, draft captions, and schedule each post (days, weeks, months in advance) all on one platform seamlessly. Planoly was specifically created for me, as I am the ideal target market, so it had to have the look and feel that I preferred as a user. I wanted to keep it as simple and clean as possible and be aesthetically beautiful!
Technology is disrupting
every industry and that includes fashion.
We’ve seen fashion and technology come together more than ever before with social media, digital influencers and e-commerce. Technology is forcing brands and companies to think outside the box and become even more creative. Brands are live streaming their fashion shows; releasing ad campaigns online instead of taking out billboards or print ads; and traditional PR is slowly on the decline because everything is moving online. It’s all about Digital PR now. Brick and Mortar stores and brands are more focused on providing a better e-commerce experience as well.
Technology is helping brands (big and small) become more visible and transparent.
It’s helping them move quicker and also have a boarder customer reach. We can clearly see the landscape changing, as digital influencers are quickly becoming the modern day celebrities.
So… all of these new opportunities are becoming rapidly available to these new groups of talent, but at the same time taking jobs away from current people in the industry. It can also hurt brands and smaller designers who don’t have the deeper pockets to make quicker moves. Also, with social media and today’s technology, designs are getting knocked off in real time and hitting the consumer’s hands before the actual designer even goes into production. There’s also a rise in direct-to-consumer brands that are succeeding in e-commerce by cutting the middleman out (the retailers). It’s truly amazing, but at the same time, there are so many issues that come to light. Fashion is changing because of technology. We need to ask how we can better use technology to help the ecosystem of fashion and other industries instead of slowly killing them. On one hand, you have to adapt or die, but on the other hand… is too much and too fast really a good thing? I feel that we’re living in the tech age and there’s just so much “visual noise.” It can be overwhelming and daunting but also inspiring at the same time! Both fashion and technology are empowering people of all ages to celebrate personal style and it’s a beautiful thing! Between these two passions, it really helped me hone my personal style by encouraging me to be myself.