Starting tonight, online fashion service JustFab is going to be starring in its very own reality TV show on the Style Network.
Given the hostile reception and dismal ratings of Bravo’s Start-Ups: Silicon Valley (as well as tepid numbers for Cheezburger Network-set LOLWork), another startup-focused show might seem like a really bad idea. But Kimora: House of Fab isn’t about a group of wannabe entrepreneurs. JustFab is a well-funded business (it raised a $76 million round last year) with more than 10 million members, and the show stars model Kimora Lee Simmons (who is JustFab’s president and creative director).
Co-CEO Adam Goldenberg told me House of Fab is “more a fashion show than a business or a technology show.” After all, JustFab (a subscription service that gives members access to new fashion chosen by celebrity stylists) is “not your typical Internet company, with everyone sitting around computers,” but instead a “visual, hands-on, fast-paced business,” he said.
That was borne out by the first episode, which the company sent me in advance of tonight’s premiere. As someone who’s not particularly devoted to fashion or to reality TV, I’m not really the target audience, but I still enjoyed the show, and it definitely assuaged my fears that it would be dull or that nothing would happen. The show finds plenty of drama in the preparations for a celebrity pool party, and the JustFab employees featured on-camera can be entertainingly passive aggressive and even outright confrontational (within the first few minutes, someone has already been called a bitch, and Simmons has affectionately told Goldenberg to “loosen the fuck up”).
Filming stretched from June of 2012 until the end of the year, when the Style Network crew became a constant presence in JustFab’s Los Angeles offices. Goldenberg admitted that it was “a nerve-wracking six, seven months,” and not just for him — the cast consists of real JustFab employees: “There was a real risk that it would be a distraction.”
Nonetheless, he and the team of the team believe that the show was a big opportunity to build JustFab’s relationship with existing customers, helping them understand how the company works, and to reach new members. As Goldenberg’s co-CEO Don Ressler told me (via email), “House of Fab provides the ultimate platform to highlight JustFab’s personal shopping experience, products and social community.”
The show premieres tonight on the Style Network at 9pm (8pm Central). And yes, if it does well, the hope is to do more seasons.