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Burberry takes a walk on the wild side

The Association Press
Modified: February 22, 2013 at 4:03 pm •  Published: February 22, 2013

Models wore low kitten wedges, which seemed to divide opinion among the high-heel wearing fashion pack.

Backstage there was nothing but praise for the designer, who was surrounded by his front row guests, including model Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, actress Freida Pinto and musician Tinie Tempah.

Bailey has made a point of introducing digital and mobile technology to Burberry in the past few years, and his catwalks are now set up with cameras that live-stream the show to the brand's many online channels like Twitter and Facebook to fans worldwide.

Its latest runway collections are available to buy right away from its website, and this season the fashion house pushed it further by marketing customized versions of the latest designs.

Customers can order their favorite bag or coat from the runway to come with a gold nameplate, and the service even comes with an embedded chip that can show videos of the customization process.

It's all a very different story compared to the days when Thomas Burberry first began making functional outerwear in the 1850s.

Enthusiastic as Bailey is about harnessing technology to his business' advantage, he said people would always enjoy attending a physical — not virtual — fashion show.

"It's just another vehicle," he said. "Technology gives you another way of talking to audiences and communities around the world that love what we love: fashion and music and entertainment."

So will fashion weeks one day become obsolete? "Never," he said resolutely.