The year’s coolest projects merging fashion with technology

Was 2015 the year of wearables?

2015 was announced as the Year of Wearables. It was actually the year wearables started to look fashionable. The year where we started to see more and more fashion tech popping up at fashion shows. A year of announcements, of creative minds blowing the frontier between fashion & function, between fashion & technology, sciences and other technical fields promised to enhance fashion for good. To celebrate the new year, we gathered the most spectacular projects of 2015. Let 2016 be even more stunning, let it be the year where technology is subtly integrated into clothing!

Fashion x 3D printing

Chanel’s 3D printed suits

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THE IDEA

For its Couture show, Karl rocked the technology using a state-of-the-art Selective Laser Sintering machine (3D printing) to reimagine the iconic Chanel suit. Looking to bring it to the 21st century. Featuring square-cut shoulders and boxy jackets, the three dimensional suit was 3D printed then embroidered and hand-worked by the Ecole Lesage teams.

WHY WE LIKE IT

We were afraid Chanel was not taking the technology train, but it is surely taking it. The result of mixing 3D printing with traditional embroidery savoir-faire is just stunningly beautiful. We love it.

Ruff by Pauline van Dongen

Ruff
THE IDEA

In collaboration with architect Behnaz Farahi, Pauline presented a living-like dress at SXSW to show how 3D-printed fashion can be used to augment the body.

WHY WE LIKE IT

Mixing 3D printing and interactive design, Ruff reveals how wearables can be imbued with responsive and dynamic properties, and endowed with almost life-like behaviors. Mechanical principles of springs were explored in order to create resiliently moving structures by means of solid 3D printing. Various topologies and surface modification enhanced the aesthetic expression of the spiraling form as well as to control the types of motion it could afford around the body.

Danit Peleg’S fully home 3D-printed collection

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THE IDEA

For her graduate collection, young student Danit Peleg decided to 3D print everything at home.

“I really enjoyed the fact that I could create without intermediaries; I could design my own textiles and manufacture my own clothes, all from my own home. I didn’t have to go buy cloth that someone else chose to sell – I could make my own.”

WHY WE LIKE IT

The first ever all-3D printed collection, made by a young talented designer, creating intricate and wearable designs. What we like the most with this project, is the infinite possibilities it brings to fashion design, no matter the ressources or scale of the brand. In the future, anyone will be able to create their own clothing from home. And that, even if Kanye doesn’t seem to like it, is a fantastic idea!


Fashtech & the runway

Iris van Herpen’s fashion shows (AW15 & SS16)

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THE IDEA

Iris van Herpen is known to be the Couture artist of FashionTech. This year, she stunned us two times with first, her Hacking Infinity AW15 runway show, and then the Quaquaversal SS16 show. From the way she explores materials to create never-seen-before clothing to the spectacular way she showcases her work during fashion weeks, the designer never stops amazing us.

WHY WE LIKE IT

During her Hacking Infinity show in March, Iris hand burnished metal mesh to give a mottled effect with “nebula-like” colors across its surface. The result is a truly gorgeous fabric.

For her latest show, Quaquaversal, Iris invited our beloved Brienne of Tarth (Gwendoline Christy) to perform a live-creation of a dress onto her, mixing innovative techniques including 3D printing, laser cutting and hand weaving; surrounded by three sculptures grown by  Jólan van der Wiel.

Anrealage SS16

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THE IDEA

This year, for the Spring/ Summer 2016, the Japanese designer offered a whole collection made of photosensitive textiles, forcing the audience to stretch their hands holding flashing smartphones to reveal patterns and shades of primary colors.

WHY WE LIKE IT

Through a partnership with a firm specialized in reflective paint, Kunihiko Moriniga distorted and twisted other fields into fashion. He succeeded to combine technical properties to aesthetic pursuit. He created a textile with predictable fabric with modular properties, and this is the exact definition of augmented textiles.

Chromat’s Adrenaline Dress

 

THE IDEA

The Adrenaline Dress is composed of 3D printed panels and has been designed in collaboration with Francis Bitoni (he’s behind Dita von Teese 3D printed dress, amongst other great pieces), and an interlinked, expandable carbon fiber framework. Somehow like Anouk Wipprecht’s Spider Dress (announced at Vegas CES last January), the Chromat dress senses when adrenaline levels get high and mimics the fight-or-flight mode, extending the wearer’s sensory system to form an imposing shape.

WHY WE LIKE IT

Amazing and intricate work that proves again that Fashion and 3D Printing make a really hot couple. But, yes, I see you coming. It is still somehow made for editorial photo-shoots or runways, but not really adapted for real life. But just stare at this, you can’t tell me it’s not the future. A future where intelligent chips are incorporated to garments so beautifully that you don’t feel you are wearing technology anymore. This gets me so excited!


Manufacturing innovation

Google Project Jacquard + Levi’s

Google Project Jacquard

THE IDEA

This new system to weave technology into fabric will transform our clothes into interactive surfaces. Allowing designers and developers to build connected, touch-sensitive textiles into their own creations.

“The structure of a capacitive touch sensing device is very similar to that of a woven fabric,” ATAP Design Lead Carsten Schwesig told EE Times. “The core of what we’re doing is replacing some of these yarns with conductive yarns.”

WHY WE LIKE IT

With this project, Google steps into the big game of tech clothing. Empowering developers, designers and makers to do their own wearable tech. Bringing the technology to fashion people who don’t necessarily need to have an electronics background. Bringing them fabrics with incorporated tech, that can be shown or not, upon their will. Such a clever move from Google, as we know it is still trying to learn how to make tech fashionable. Yet, as these are just announcements for now, we’ll still have to wait to see how Google’s Project Jacquard will change the game.


Fashionware

Karen Topacio’s Drape App

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THE IDEA

For her E-Fashion Awards collection, young designer Karen Topacio used an interactive recording motion software, developed specifically for this project, to generate random volumes that serve as basis for the design of the collection.

WHY WE LIKE IT

The app allows users to digitally drape volumes and shapes through their body movements. A 3D program that generates interesting 3D details. Instead of draping with fabric on a mannequin, Karen draped in front of a screen with her arms and legs. A fun way to drape!

The Intel Curie Chip

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THE IDEA

The Intel® Curie™ module is the first platform of its kind from Intel, a complete low-power solution designed for companies interested in developing wearable devices as well as consumer and industrial edge products. The module packs a robust set of features into its tiny size that are ideal for “always-on” applications such as social media, sports, and fitness activities. This can enable efficient and intelligent wearable solutions for a broad range of form factors—including rings, bags, bracelets, pendants, fitness trackers, even buttons.

WHY WE LIKE IT

To speed the development of wearable products, tech giants have an important role to bring designers with the appropriate technology (both soft & hardware) for them to create functional and aesthetic wearable technology. Here, Intel shown how the company is moving forward with the future of design, by providing what it does best, intricate technology.


Communication

Louis Vuitton’s SS16 show & campaign

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THE IDEA

Louis Vuitton’s Nicolas Ghesquière recently unveiled the brand’s SS16 campaign, showcasing Lightning from the “Final Fantasy” series. A coherent choice to wear “Stange Days”, the futuristic collection he shown in Paris back in October, where he remodeled the whole brand, bringing new codes to the fashion house, with a mix of modernity and heritage but also futuristic-looking fabrics.

WHY WE LIKE IT

As seen at other major fashion houses during SS16 FW, the new trend is to kill the trend: not a single way of dressing, but a broader and more diverse offering, and to that we say YES. Fashion is a way to express one’s personality, but trends kill personality. Seeing many different styles, that people can after re-appropriate to their own style is what I always loved about fashion, not trends. A clever mix of the house’s codes, futuristic-looking fabrics and style, with a daring view of today’s girl, all of it brought together to bring the new Louis Vuitton to life, and make us fall in love with it all over again. Smart move.


Sustainable fashion

Mayya Saliba’s Sustainable Fashion & Other Stories

Mayya Saliba

THE IDEA

“Sustainability and other stories” examines how circular economy could be a solution for the paradox of fast fashion and sustainability by being induced, opening the way to democratic sustainability. In order to determine the right stakeholders, the study discusses the political role of design and explores the link between consumption, human behavior and social pressure in the context of a globalized capitalistic world. The result is a stunning three silhouettes, made of sustainable, recyclable and compostable fabrics.

WHY WE LIKE IT

There is a clear business case for fashion to lean towards circular economy; it lies in a simple business durability dilemma. Our world is threaten, our home, because industrialization pollutes our grounds, our oceans, our forests… Ethical fashion has often been considered as a niche, where only a few styles do exist. But this is not how sustainable fashion should be, it should look just the same as non-sustainable fashion. Because fashion is a question of aesthetic. The fabric of your shirt could be a clean one, but if it’s cut like sh*t, there’s no way you’re going to wear it. And this is how Mayya has it right, if you were to choose between two garments at a same pricing, both clothes being beautiful, there’s more chance you’re going to buy the most sustainable one.

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