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Marie Claire’s iPad App Builds a Wonder Wall of Fashion

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

After a season of tablet-ized magazine apps pouring onto the iPad, it is genuinely refreshing to see a print brand leave the magazine paradigm far behind and try something fresh and new. Marie Claire’s Fashion A-Z app for iPad turns 150 editor picks into an endless wall of images that the fashionista can spin, scroll and poke around.

The items are strewn across the touch screen. Tapping anywhere brings up a window of items for the various letters (Z is for zippers, etc.). Each window is an interactive mini-app itself, with featured items that switch with a tap of the finger and some pieces that have 360-degree swivel views. You can post most items to Twitter or Facebook or email the entire pop-up pane. The sharing mechanisms are obvious and handy throughout.

If you tend to get motion sickness from swiping around a free-floating wall of images (it can happen) there is a sidebar available that indexes the list A-Z. Windows usually bring up collections of fashion items and accessories that can be saved for later viewing in a flipbook. In many cases the user can click through directly to the maker’s site for ordering. The app is polite enough to provide an embedded browser, so shopping occurs without being kicked out to a browser.

While the app carries a $2.99 price tag, L’Oréal Paris is also the sole sponsor. Embedded in the wonder wall of fashion are pop-up windows that feature the company’s cosmetics. The sponsorship is well-integrated and feels like content.

Bravo to Marie Claire for thinking outside of the magazine for this fresh take on a tablet app from a print brand. The depth of a magazine is still there, but it is reengineered to appeal to the eye and to the touch in a new way.


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