In Folk Couture, the museum's first foray into fashion, thirteen established and emerging designers created original ensembles inspired by artwork from the museum's collection.
Fashion seeks inspiration in unpredictable sources crossing boundaries between art, life, and history. Embracing this spirit, we produced an exhibition microsite on Tumblr, amplifying the content's reach beyond traditional museum and folk art demographics. In three months, the site acquired over 14,000 followers, outpacing the museum's combined Facebook and Twitter audience.
Straddling contemporary art and fashion, the Folk Couture exhibition presented a unique opportunity for the museum to diversify its audience. Our approach put the user first, organizing information to make the designers, their processes, and the ensembles super accessible and shareable – increasing visibility and awareness within an entirely new community.
Our strategy targeted Tumblr's most active demographic (18-to-29 year olds) through simple, digestible visual content, intuitive pairings, and invitational Calls-to-Action. The site successfully engaged the right audience, and attracted the museum's largest number of 20–29 year old attendees (26% of Folk Couture visits). In fact, the fourth most cited reason for visiting Folk Couture was "the website."
Tumblr is a competitive landscape and original content is still king. We curated 397 posts spanning photography, quotations, audio and video, and tagged them (#FolkCouture, #Fashion, #Vintage) to promote easy sharing and discovery. Through proper tagging, we leveraged the clout and fan networks of the designers, including Catherine Malandrino, Creatures of the Wind, and Jean Yu.