This is not a drill people. this is not a drill.
Yes, the run up to Christmas just got even more interesting thanks to The Instagram Edit, an exclusive pop up in the London flagship store showcasing 8 Instagram first brands.
From jewellery and ceramics to fashion and beauty, all the items will be shoppable on Instagram as well as at the Oxford Street store.
Running from 5th-15th December, this pop-up has changed the meaning of being shoppable on Instagram, plus the interiors are 'gram-worthy.
'Brands have been a key part of the Instagram community since our launch — Instagram has always been a place to discover and be inspired by businesses of all sizes,' explained Eva Chen, Fashion Director at Instagram. 'Today, 90 percent of people follow a brand or business. The Instagram Edit @TheOfficialSelfridges brings to life some of these beloved brands that were built on Instagram in an iconic setting just in time for Christmas.'
Digital Features Editor Jenny Proudfoot sat down with Eva to find out a bit more about The Instagram Edit.
JP: What is The Instagram Edit?
EC: It’s a ten-day pop-up, featuring 8 brands, which were born and raised and kind of discovered on Instagram. There’s everyone from a candle maker named Hopscotch based in London, to an American brand called the Frankie Shop which does the best jumpsuits and the best t-shirts and everyone in the Instagram office in New York is obsessed with. There’s an ethical brand called Mene that’s really innovative, and measures gold by weight rather than just paying a certain amount of money for a ring. And then there is a ceramicist Stella and a skincare line called Tandem. Basically none of the chosen brands have a brick and mortar presence, so we're giving them the opportunity to have a pop-up in one of the most iconic retailers in the world.
JP: How did you choose the brands featured in The Instagram Edit?
EC: It’s a combination of brands that the Selfridges team had their eyes on and ones that our team had suggested. I’m not going to lie, I literally sent a list of about 50. Also my team sent further hundreds of brands from us. I think Selfridges team wanted brands that had no brick and mortar and that this would be their first experience of something like this. They really wanted to make it special, which I think is super nice. It’s been really, really fun. The space is beautiful. It’s like a gradient, kind of iridescent installation, from Antoni Tudisco. It really pops as you come up the escalator. Plus we have an iconic Selfridges window - it'a a crystal installation that you can move around from the outside.
We know that people shop on the Instagram. 130 million people tap on shopping tags every month and we have 90% of people follow a brand on Instagram. It’s just making Instagram more shoppable and bringing the shopping experience to life.
JP: How long did the project take from start to finish?
EC: It only took a few months. I remember when we first started talking about it - it was around September. I remember thinking there’s no way we can pull this off for the holidays.
JP: Why did you choose Selfridges for the space?
EC: Well, Selfridges for me is one of the most iconic stores. I studied abroad here in England, and I used to get the 7am bus to Marble Arch and be the first in line to get into Selfridges at 10 to shop. So it’s really exciting that Instagram is doing a pop-up here because it feels a little like home. It’s super nostalgic. But it's not just iconic for my personal memories. I think it’s fun, it’s modern, it has such a great edit of brands. Plus, I love the merchandising of the store - the Santa Claus in menswear is wearing a jumpsuit with Balenciaga sneakers - it’s very Instagrammy.
JP: Did you always see Instagram going in this shoppable direction?
EC: From when I joined. I remember my first interview with the founder Kevin Systrom and I remember him asking, 'What do you think Instagram should do? What do you think it’s trying to make better?'. I remember telling him how I was very motivated to shop on Instagram. I follow a lot of of influencers and I have a lot of friends who have a really cool story and it’s frustrating. If I see something they’re wearing and they haven’t tagged it, I have to be like 'hey where are those slippers from?' It’s annoying, so my answer to him was that we need to make Instagram more shoppable. We need to make followers able to tap something and buy it. So that was almost five years ago and we're beginning to make these changes. I’m super excited about the platform continuing to do amazing things. Whether it's IGTV, face filters, GIF stickers or stories, we're just continuing to add new features and layers. I remember when Instagram stories launched two or three years ago, and everyone was like 'Who’s going to use this?'. Now half a billion people are using it and I can’t imagine a world without it. I’m really excited about what the future of Instagram holds.
JP: Do you think we will see future Instagram pop-ups?
EC: Hopefully. I think that the interest and the desire is certainly there for people to see digitally native brands come to life. Glossier is a great example of a brand that had such a strong digital presence. That is why since they opened stores, there are usually queues of women down the block. For lots of businesses, Instagram is the sole marketing channel. Instagram is how they have and how they reach their customers so I’m the most excited about helping those businesses have a voice and have an opportunity to reach a greater network of people. I think the future is bright - ripe with opportunity.
The Instagram Edit runs from 5th-15th December at Selfridges London in The Designer Studio.
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Jenny Proudfoot is an award-winning journalist, specialising in lifestyle, culture, entertainment, international development and politics. She has worked at Marie Claire UK for seven years, rising from intern to Features Editor and is now the most published Marie Claire writer of all time. She was made a 30 under 30 award-winner last year and named a rising star in journalism by the Professional Publishers Association.
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