EVENT REPORT | FASHIONTECH AND THE USER EXPERIENCE

EVENT REPORT | FASHIONTECH AND THE USER EXPERIENCE

Image credit: Brooke Roberts Wearables London and INTERLACED came together this month to host an event exploring the intersection of fashion and technology to enhance user experiences. On Wednesday evening, we gathered in the stunning Kingsway Hall Hotel for an inspiring discussion on the latest in the fashiontech space. The event kicked off with Dr. Camille Baker, media artist, curator and researcher, focused on soft circuits, DIY electronics for smart garments and haptic interfaces for performance and mobile media. Baker went back some 15 years and shared some of her initial projects, as well as her latest work, which looks into ways in which performers can benefit from wearables. ‘Dancers are the hyper users of this technology,’ said the UCA reader. She referred to her MIND Touch project, which looked into new understandings of the sensations of ‘liveness’ and ‘presence’ that may emerge in participatory networked performance, using mobile phones and wearables. Another direction in which we can look at wearables is by fusing technology and biology, said Baker. As examples of this, she pointed to Giulia Tomasello’s Bioconductive Skin and Future Flora projects as well as the work of Anna Dumitriu and Kasia Molga. Next up, award-winning digital knitwear designer Brooke Roberts spoke about the need for us to see technology as an enabler and not the whole purpose of fashiontech products. Roberts, who has over a decade of experience as a diagnostic radiographer within the NHS, uses inspiration from scan images of the brain and sinuses to create knitwear using the latest digital knitting technology and yarns. This truly shows how fashion and technology can exist in...
THE CRATED CREATES SLEEK ENTERPRISE WEARABLE

THE CRATED CREATES SLEEK ENTERPRISE WEARABLE

Before smartwatches and fitness trackers hit the consumer market, the investments in wearable technology came mainly from the military, enterprise and medical industries. Why? Well.. while fitness buffs use these devices to track and boast about their workouts, the use cases in business settings can be far more valuable. For example, emergency workers and medical personnel could use wearables to get vital data at a moment’s notice or alerts around safety and security. Because of their purpose, the focus on enterprise wearables can be much more function than design but we are happy to see that this is starting to change. At The Next Web conference in Amsterdam, INTERLACED friends THE CRATED unveiled a sleek and functional safety wearable prototype for the enterprise. The Armor vest, as it is called, responds to a worker’s heat, stress levels and posture, using printed circuitry on fabric. The piece is a new type of smart apparel designed to monitor harmful working conditions that one may face during the day, such as bodily stress, extreme temperatures and compromising postures. THE CRATED collaborated with another New York startup, Strong Arm Technologies, and smart clothes platform Bon Bouton to create the prototype. Using a printed graphene temperature sensor by Bon Bouton and taking inspiration from StrongArm’s deep understanding and connection to the safety of active workers (who they call Industrial Athletes), The Crated designed and fabricated Armor using their own textile circuitry technology, INTELLITEX. The Circuit was printed onto fabric using custom formulas and machinery built by THE CRATED. This device can be housed in any apparel exterior. In industry, the circuit would likely be...
INTERVIEW | SAIF SIDDIQUI, FOUNDER, ISHU

INTERVIEW | SAIF SIDDIQUI, FOUNDER, ISHU

Ever wished that your friend, little brother, stranger wouldn’t take a picture of you? Bad hair day, hangover or just not feeling your best. Whatever the reason, sometimes we can’t control the digital content people put of us online. In a world where the choice to remain anonymous is no longer a choice, the ISHU scarf comes handy. Officially launched in October 2015, the product combines fashionable prints with technological functionality that black out the wearer. Think of it as an invisibility cloak. Whenever you don’t want your picture to be taken just wrap yourself with the ISHU and the final image will be just a black silhouette. Five months into the market and the ISHU has gathered a bunch of celebrity fans. Nick Jonas, Nina Dobrev, Cameron Diaz and Paris Hilton have already been spotted wearing it. We sat down with Saif Siddiqui, ISHU’s founder to chat fashion tech, privacy and entrepreneurship. Tell me about your background and how you started the ISHU? I came up with the concept six years ago. Within those six years, I joined IMG William Morris, where I worked for four and a half years and also started my own company – Access All Brands – an online product placement platform which helps brands reach celebrities and influencers. Five months ago I launched the first ISHU scarf. It’s an antiflash scarf, which means if someone takes a picture of you, your face blacks out so you don’t see anyone in the picture apart from the scarf. Do you have technological background? No, I have no professional background in anything that I’ve ever done....
MANUS X MACHINA: THE NOTEWORTHY MET GALA OUTFITS

MANUS X MACHINA: THE NOTEWORTHY MET GALA OUTFITS

Ah, the first Monday in May. The time when anyone who’s anyone in the fashion and entertainment come together to celebrate the theme of the New York’s MET exhibition. And what a more suitable theme for 2016 than Manus x Machina: Fashion in an age of technology? Sponsored by tech giant Apple and with the support of Conde Nast, the Manus x Machina exhibition explores how designers are reconciling the handmade and the machine-made in the creation of haute couture and avant-garde ready-to-wear. Featured designers include Balenciaga, Alexander McQueen, Pierre Cardin, Hussein Chalayan, Chanel, Valentino, Dior, Louis Vuitton, Iris van Herpen, Mary Katrantzou, Issey Miyake, Prada, Gareth Pugh, threeASFOUR, Yohji Yamamoto, and many others. So, how did celebs interpret ‘fashion in an age of technology’? Like a lot of silver, it seems. Metalics ran through the outfit choices of those who dressed according to the theme. Which is okay, but it can get tiresome after a while. Bearing in mind this is THE party of the year, we’d expect nothing less than THE spectacle of the year. That said, there were a few noteworthy gowns and some incredible accessory pieces throughout the night. Here are our favourite picks that go beyond the gimmick in celebration of this year’s MET theme.   Claire Danes in Zac Posen Without a doubt, the belle of the ball was Homeland actress Claire Danes who outshone others on the red carpet by a mile. Her secret? American designer Zac Posen, who designed a Cinderella-like baby-blue gown that glowed in the dark thanks to 30 mini-battery packs sewn into layers of fibre optic woven organza....
INTERLACED: THE GAME-CHANGING POTENTIAL OF 3D PRINTING IN FASHION

INTERLACED: THE GAME-CHANGING POTENTIAL OF 3D PRINTING IN FASHION

The last couple of years have been defining for the rise of 3D printing in the fashion industry. Even though not many were paying attention when designers first started experimenting with additive manufacturing, it’s safe to say that there’s now a hype around this type of technology. Especially when giants like Nike and New Balance are taking notice. At INTERLACED 2015, we discussed how 3D printing is influencing accessories and footwear and what it means for emerging designers. The panel, chaired by the 3D Print Show’s Faith Robinson, included Roberta Lucca (Co-Founder, WonderLuk), Bryan Oknyansky (Founder and Creative Director, Shoes by Bryan) and Nikolay Piriankov (Co-Founder, Rare Pink).   Roberta Lucca, Co-Founder of WonderLuk – a curator marketplace for 3D printed jewelry – shared the reality of getting a grasp of how 3D printing technology works was different from what she expected. “The reality is very different from what the media tells you. After I got my first 3D printed it actually took me a long time to understand how to design something nice, wearable and good and figure out how the printer works. There’s a lot of things to be solved in the 3D printing world before consumers are able to buy a printer, take it home and create something beautiful”, said Lucca, explaining how this got her thinking about the best way to use such technology. “I was a little frustrated about how the fashion industry works and I thought ‘Ok, I have something that is difficult to work at the moment from a consumer perspective which could help solve a lot of problems the fashion industry...