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2010 September 1

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Shauna Mei Shauna Mei
AMBER De VOS/PatrickMcMullan.com
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(NEW YORK) Come Fashion Week, be prepared to add another stop to your daily online shopping circuit: Shauna Mei, co-founder of the Aronsson Group, will launch AHAlife, a new, invitation-only website that merges content, e-commerce, and social media. Mei has some bold-names on board for the new venture; Gilles Bensimon will serve as AHAlife’s creative director, former Vogue copy director Lauren David Peden will join as editorial director, and the likes of Diane von Furstenberg, Tim Gunn, Wendi Murdoch, Diane Pernet and Lorenzo Martone have signed on as guest curators of the site, which will feature one curator-selected product a day, available exclusively through AHAlife.

“The way e-commerce has traditionally been done—you can tell it was invented by men—is it’s like an index,” explained Mei. “You go online to shop because you practically need something. Humans, especially women, want to discover something new. That’s why blogs have done so well, because there’s something new every day. The problem is that you’re reading all this content but you can’t actually purchase anything. The entire process doesn’t make sense.”

Mei’s empasis for the site is the idea of collective curation, which means that in addition to the aforementioned von Furstenberg and Gunn, readers will be able to submit a product to be featured on AHAlife. “I’m not trying to be an Anna Wintour,” laughed Mei. “AHAlife taps into this place that we all have; we discover things, and we want to share it. We’re not about picking things because they’re exclusive, we want things that are inspiring.” The featured items will not be limited to fashion, but include interior and general lifestyle products. AHAlife.com will go live September 13 (expect a Fashion Week fête on the 15th); but for early access, click here.
EMILY GYBEN




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