HOW BRAGI IS CAPTURING THE HEARABLES MARKET

HOW BRAGI IS CAPTURING THE HEARABLES MARKET

If, for a moment, we leave the world of smart textiles and interactive garments, we’ll see that in the wearables tech industry, a lot of businesses are still focusing on smart watches, fitness trackers and other wrist-based devices. But there’s another player in the field, which has been quietly establishing domination. Hearables. Hearables, or connected ear-worn devices, can mean different things, from wireless earbuds to smart hearing aid devices. Such products were at prominent display at this year’s CES and, perhaps due to the reveal of Apple’s jack-less iPhone, the category is growing over eight times the rate of wrist-worn devices. Apart from Apple, there are a few players in the field trying to capture the consumer market, with one of the top being Bragi. Bragi started in 2014, with a Kickstarter that raised $3 million from 15,998 supporters, all of whom fantasised about a “smart” wireless earphone that could store music, track fitness, health and so much more. As a result, in 2016 Bragi released its first product, The Dash – smart, wireless earbuds that are for much more than just listening to music. Forget buttons. The Dash can be controlled through gestures such as nodding to accept a phone call or shaking to decline it. The earbuds are compatible with a smartphone app that lets you personalise them even further. It visualises the features of The Dash, showing your fitness status, heart rate, calories burnt, distance traveled and more. The ear is a better place than the wrist for collecting certain biometric data, which makes Bragi perfectly positioned to service the active, connected consumer of today. If...
THE UNSEEN CREATES COLOUR-CHANGING HAIR DYE

THE UNSEEN CREATES COLOUR-CHANGING HAIR DYE

What if we could create materials that respond to our individual needs, helping us to live better lives? What if there was clothing that could think for itself, or bandages that could tell us when they need to be changed? These are questions that Lauren Bowker, material scientist and founder of THE UNSEEN, wants to tackle. Her studio, which has previously made colour-, environment- and mood-changing couture pieces, has just unveiled its latest breakthrough: colour-changing hair dye. Yes, you read correctly! Just in time for London Fashion Week, THE UNSEEN launched its first hair dye, which changes colours based on the temperature of the environment and you. Change in temperature triggers a reaction that produces a molecule with a slightly different absorption of light, and thus a different colour. FIRE is inspired by occult glamour – a spell cast on somebody to make them see something the spell-caster wishes them to see. The application of the dye is currently semi-permanent lasting over a few washes and the brand is currently looking for commercial partners to help take the innovation to market.   Bowker and her team are confident there will be no damage to the scalp, and no significant effect on the hair fibres themselves (no more than typical semi permanent dyes, that is). That said, the studio is working on optimising the recipe and assessing its toxicology before the product is commercialised. So far, THE UNSEEN have coloured a number of successful samples both on and off the body, in various colours for various seasons and bodily temperatures. These include blue outdoors and blonde indoors, and a black to red dye which...
TUMBLR & PARAMOUNT PICTURES TO HOST A FASHION TECH EVENT AT PARIS FASHION WEEK

TUMBLR & PARAMOUNT PICTURES TO HOST A FASHION TECH EVENT AT PARIS FASHION WEEK

To celebrate the release of ‘The Ghost in the Shell’ movie, Tumblr and Paramount Pictures are collaborating on an event to explore the future relationship between technology, fashion, and humans. ‘Prototype’ will take place on March 7th during Paris Fashion Week, where the latest wearable technology will be showcased. This is a theme that prevails heavily in the film. The exhibition will feature creations from designers using technological advances to innovate the world of fashion, with garments that react to adrenaline, display video content, adjust the temperature of the wearer or change shape when they sense different sounds.  Curated by Tumblr, the event will also feature a headline performance from Viktoria Modesta, the ‘Bionic Pop Star’ and face of Channel 4’s Born Risky disability initiative. Following the event, Tumblr will showcase highlights and original content from it online from March 10th. Among the exhibitors are some of our fashion tech favourites. Chromat, for example, will be showcasing its Adrenaline Dress, which mimics the body’s ‘fight or flight’ reaction and changes shape to empower the wearer. CuteCircuit, the London-based fashion tech studio, will display its latest pieces and EMEL+ARIS will present its Smart Coat, which uses Far Infrared technology to allow the wearer’s whole body to feel warm. On the accessories front, Wise Wear, which we shared the stage with at BDYHAX in January, will present its smart accessories collection, while shoe designer Silvia Fado will showcase her Kinetic Traces collection of Hydraulic Heels which use springs, rubber balls and pneumatic hydraulics to absorb shock. The event will be held during Paris Fashion Week on March 7, 2017 from 6-9pm...
CREATIVE TECHNOLOGY AGENCY HOLITION LAUNCHES STUDENT UX COMPETITION

CREATIVE TECHNOLOGY AGENCY HOLITION LAUNCHES STUDENT UX COMPETITION

Don’t get us wrong, we love technology. But just because we can now digitise pretty much anything these days, doesn’t mean we should. As Jonathan Chippindale, CEO of creative technology agency Holition told us at INTERLACED 2015, “technology has to be genuinely and obviously useful, otherwise it becomes a gimmick.” Holition, which regularly aligns itself with the art, fashion, creative and technology industries, and helps its clients bring technology into their businesses in a useful way, is now launching its first student UX competition in a bid to discover and mentor the next wave of innovative thinkers. UXSprints asks entrants to think what does the future feel like? and provide an answer through their design solution. Students are invited to consider innovative ways to improve the interaction between people and digital devices thereby enhancing the user experience. By exploring the empathy between the human body, design, science and the senses, is it possible to trigger ongoing shifts in the way space is perceived and experienced? The competition is open to students from multiple disciplines currently enrolled in higher education and the overall winning project will receive a £5000 prize fund plus a 4-8-week studio residency wit Holition, which will enable them to produce and showcase a prototype to press and industry in a dedicated exhibition. Some of the many benefits on offer to finalists include introductions to industry experts, mentoring & coaching programmes, media exposure and access to technology labs, among other perks. Those of you eager to tackle the challenge and work alongside leading creative technologists, designers and scientists, put those brains to work. Entry deadline is 10...
ILLUMINATING THE RUNWAY WITH FIREFLY

ILLUMINATING THE RUNWAY WITH FIREFLY

One of the main challenges in fashion tech, especially when we talk about clothing, is washability. Even though there have been improvements in the area, garments with embedded technology are still difficult to take care of or specialised equipment. But that is set to change soon. MAS Holdings, an apparel technology company that works with major global brands in intimate apparel and sportswear, has unveiled a new sub-brand that embeds illumination into flexible fabrics and is completely washable. Firefly, as the new venture is called, is patented technology solution that can illuminate fashion, accessories, safety wear, and kids wear, among other products.   The solution mimicks bio-motion to light up on demand safely and effectively. Products integrating the Firefly illumination technology can stay lit for up to four hours. The LED lights can be activated as easy as pressing a button and recharged easily with a USB. This offers designers freedom to be more creative and expressive without worrying about special garment treatment. What’s more, Firefly is an opportunity for creative to innovate while also manufacture affordably and quickly through MAS’s globally integrated supply chain. “We have meticulously evolved over the years into high performance sports and swimwear towards the convergence of fashion, lifestyle and technology,“ says Nathan Sivagananathan, Chief Growth Officer at MAS. “Firefly, our groundbreaking illumination technology is merely scratching the surface. We are determined to continue cultivating change while enhancing the necessary and creating the unexpected.” Firefly is off to a flying start (pun intended). The company was selected as a CES® 2017 Innovation Awards Honoree in the Fitness, Sports and Biotech product category. We can’t wait...
WESTFIELD & LONDON COLLEGE OF FASHION TEAM UP TO BRING EMERGING TALENT INTO THE SPOTLIGHT

WESTFIELD & LONDON COLLEGE OF FASHION TEAM UP TO BRING EMERGING TALENT INTO THE SPOTLIGHT

High-end retail destination Westfield has announced an exciting partnership with London College of Fashion’s Innovation Agency which aims to create a showcase platform for London and UK based artists, designers and creative talent. The feature artist series will see a number of creatives taking over a dedicated space within Westfield’s Village, with the first of those being the highly talented designer Martine Jarlgaard. Having presented her collection during last season’s London Fashion Week in mixed reality by using Microsoft’s HoloLens, Jarlgaard is exhibiting her physical pieces for the first time in Westfield. What’s more, all products featured can be purchased online. Staying true to her futuristic vision, Jarlgaard has recreated the holographic effect of her show by inviting the viewer to interact with the display via a mirrored image whilst catching a glimpse of the actual collection behind. The sculptural silhouettes on display come from a hybridization of dressy nostalgia, understated decadence and a relaxed, futuristic language of simplicity. ‘The fashion I envision isn’t fashion as we know it,’ said the designer in an official statement. ‘The partnership between FIA, Westfield and Martine Jarlgaard London is a window of a more interactive, exploratory future where consumers are drawn towards experiences, ethics, authenticity and vision which goes beyond aesthetics. Collaborating with FIA and Westfield is a privilege, as we share a vision of challenging status quo of a system which is at its breaking point, and pushing innovation of the way we consume, interact and experience.’ Throughout 2017 more LCF supported designers and artists will feature in key spaces across both Westfield London and Westfield Stratford City, giving emerging talent...