The retailer using visual stories to fight consumerism

A thoughtful approach.

Acreati recently caught our eye for a reason worth sharing.

Rather than listing monotonous descriptions for each product stocked, the online retailer releases visual stories for each of its collections. It’s reframing fashion as an art form, working against the current impression of fashion as synonymous with shopping. 

Acreati works collaboratively with creatives from all over the world. The idea is to trigger buyers to consider the inspiration and design process behind the clothing, and to think more about the products they are consuming.

We were so fascinated with Acreati’s approach, we asked founders Ling Lin and Charlotte Flore Rommerts to create a visual story for Fashion Journal, before hitting them with a few questions of our own. 

Tell us how the idea came about. 

The idea of Acreati first came from wanting to bridge the gap between talented fashion designers and customers who are looking for unique fashion items. We saw there are a lot of great designers with amazing designs, but they have limited channels to reach the audience who are actually looking for them.

In addition to this, the other issue we see in the market is that fashion seems to be synonymous with shopping. The fashion business became very commercial. Consumers don’t know the stories of the design anymore. We want to bring those stories and inspirations to light again, as we believe they are an essential part of fashion design. 

The idea of ‘visual story’ came from our background in photography and art curation. We’d like to tell stories that inspire people and trigger people to think more about what they are consuming. Through these collaborative visual stories, we’d like to bring back the essence of fashion as an art form.

Where do the images come from?

We really enjoy facilitating cross-collaboration among different creative disciplines. At the moment we are primarily focusing on bringing fashion and (fine art or documentary) photography together. There are typically two sets of images in one visual story: existing lookbook images from the fashion label and existing photo series from one photographer. We put them together based on a common theme and intersecting concept.

How do you find these designers?

We found a lot of amazing designers on Instagram and independent magazines that we follow. We also receive submissions from designers.

Tell us about the above story for Fashion Journal.

It’s inspired by photographer Ulrike Meutzner’s photo series ‘Puglia’, where she captured this southern part of Italy with crisp nature, innumerable olive trees and salty air that feels wonderfully authentic. The airy mood and carefree spirit of various Acreati designers’ Spring/Summer collections are perfectly reflected by Meutzner’s lighthearted images. As the photographer described: “Sleeping late, reading on the terrace after breakfast, lying by the pool and small excursions – like that, the days passed in Ostuni.”

What’s the feedback been like so far?

We’re happy to receive a lot of positive feedback on our concept. People have told us they like our curation and the aesthetics. The visual stories inspire them. Through our Instagram feed, they have discovered new fashion labels. The fashion labels we’ve spoken to appreciate our approach of connecting their collections to non-fashion photography, as it adds extra elements to the fashion story.

Is it worth all the hard work in creating editorials?

Definitely! We love to create these visual stories and bring photographers and designers together. It is also a creative process on its own, which we really enjoy. Since we started Acreati, we’ve been fortunate enough to meet a lot of talented designers and amazing photographers and artists whose work we love. It is a great pleasure to be able to share these work with our audience.

Do you have eyes on any Australian designers?

We’ve been eyeing Song For The Mute for quite a while now. We have presented Melbourne-based bag and accessories label LZL in Modefabriek, the biggest fashion trade shows in the Netherlands. We’d love to be introduced to more Australian designers. Any tips are welcome! 

Any other plans for Australia?

We don’t have any particular plans for Australia at the moment, but we’d love to introduce our concept and European designers to the Australian audience and vice versa! 

What’s your one designer to watch?

We talked to Alana Flood early on, just after she graduated. We loved her graduation collection and curious to see what she will create next.

Anything else you’d like to add?

We’re always open to submissions and collaborations. If any fashion designers, photographers and artists would like to get in touch, you are more than welcome. We’re currently having an exhibition at our favourite cafe Coffee & Coconuts in Amsterdam. Some original artworks, photography and fashion items are on show till July 5. We’d highly recommend everyone to grab a coffee and check out the exhibition if you’re in Amsterdam!


Non-fashion photography: Ulrike Meutzner
Featured labels: Collar Swimwear, Atelier Bartavelle, RITARITA, meshit, Tomcsanyi
Visual story: Acreati

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