The State of Innovation in Fashion
From as early as humans could imagine they could innovate. Innovation meant looking into the future, which in turn meant imagining technologies not yet invented. While we may not be at the stage of self-cleaning garments that automatically adjust to the body, as depicted in 1989’s Back to the Future Part II, we are on our way with these fashion innovations.
Wearable technology is most prevalent in fitness. At its core, this invention is meant to serve the purpose of documenting the wearer’s activity for health and fitness purposes. But as this is not the dark ages – aka the 1980s – your wearable tech – tracking each step you take to later shame you for how little you move motivate you to move more doesn’t have to be ugly.
Wearable technology is made up of a garment or fashion accessory that is linked to a computer or data capturing network and documenting whatever the wearer deems necessary. Most of these wearable tech accessories (which include backpacks) can be traced with gps.
Preserving the environment for future generations has been one of the most consistent and ongoing causes of the 21st century. Therefore, it’s not surprising that eco-friendly and conscious fashion is a viable segment of the clothing and textile-making industry. There are people who want to know if their clothing was made in a way they can live with or not.
Fundudzi by designer Craig Jacobs proudly proclaims its ethical approach to fashion: “We believe that your clothing should be a reflection of your conscience, and that is why we are committed to sustainability not only through the materials we select for every piece we create and our approach to design, but in every aspect of our work.”
Changing up an idea – innovating – is a good as trekking to new territory. But trekking to those untouched territories is the best reward. Enter 3-D printing:
The Dutch designer Iris van Herpen was the first to explore 3-D printing, which is the process of making a real item layer by layer from a digital design or file, on a full scale in fashion. DUT graduate and designer, Kiara Gounder, is one of the first South African designers to use the technology. For her dissertation, Gounder created a 3-D printed collection – Digital Nature – and is still exploring the future of 3-D printing in fashion and in South Africa.
Would you buy technology-based fashion designs?