Ive always been curious to see what the dynamic tech giants come up with every year with their jaw dropping products that make us wonder is this possible. Besides home and commercial advancements, Technology has pushed the limits in every way of our lives and the fashion industry is all set to get futuristic too.
We have seen huge advancements in the market for tech-saavy style, especially over the last couple years. Designers have joined the movement toward wearables to create stylish pieces that keep us fresh and make our Internet-obsessed lives that much easier.
From smart watches to pants that can charge your cell phone, function has become the key to fashion. In the past two years, there have been several notable examples of technology and retail companies partnering together to address the challenges of product aesthetics. Here are some examples of the best technological innovations in fashion, so far.
Biometric Smart Shirts
Image via Ralph Lauren
Ralph Lauren is credited with changing the game of wearable tech when it released its smart shirt. The nylon compression tee, developed through a collaboration with OM, is made with thin silver fibers that can track the wearer’s biometrics.
The practically invisible sensors detect and record the heart rate, steps, calories burned, breathing, and stress level of the user, and display the information on an app. The customized app will then draw on 10,000 combinations to produce personalized workouts.
Phone Charging Pants
Image via Joe’s Jeans
Last year, designer Adrien Sauvage and Microsoft teamed up to design the world’s first pair of phone-charging pants. The wearable chinos, took six months to create, and featured a wireless Nokia charging plate in the front pocket that uses an electromagnetic field to recharge your battery.
Since then, other brands like Joe’s Jeans have released denim styles that can also charge your mobile phone simply by slipping the device in your pocket.
Google Conductive Fibers
Google announced earlier this year that it would be working with Levi’s to develop a new wearable collection titled Project Jacquard. The tech company will turn the brand’s classic styles into tech platforms that act like smart watches.
The clothing will have capabilities like sending text messages and silencing your cell phone just by tapping or swiping them. The thin fibers that were originally developed in Japan will eventually be able to be woven into any kind of textile or garment. Levi’s vice president said that he hopes this new technology will allow users to be more physically present. They will officially hit the market next year.
Image via Wikimedia
Smart watches have created a lot of hype around the wearable-tech movement. The release of the interactive watches has already begun to phase out previous innovations in wearable tech like fitness trackers.
Styles like the Apple watch offer added functionality, such as receiving phone calls and messages, accessing apps and using Apple Pay, as well as recording the users biometrics.
Temperature Regulating Materials
Image via MTA / Patrick Cashin on Flickr
Whether you’re working out, or just a victim of hot or cold climates, there is nothing better than something that can regulate your body temperature. Brands like Under Amour and Nike have introduced these special materials that can respond and control temperature to keep people comfortable, especially while being active.
Japanese retailer Uniqlo has developed a whole line of fashionable basics called Heattech that can retain heat and fight odor during those cold weather months.
Bluetooth Enabled Clothing
Image via BearTek
From gloves to hoodies, a series of styles have been developed that incorporate Bluetooth technology. Designer Asher Levine designed a whole collection of pieces that featured microchips, allowing the pieces to be tracked in case they were lost or stolen. When the chip was paired with a phone, it could display the location using Google Maps.
Recently, BearTek developed a pair of Bluetooth-enabled gloves that sync to your mobile device or GoPro camera. You can perform commands like answer calls, play music, and lock functionality, just with the touch of a finger.
Image via CHRISTOPHER MACSURAK on Wikimedia
3D printing is one of the biggest and coolest innovations for fashion. Many designers like Iris van Herpen and brands like Nike have showed us the amazing capabilities of the new technology, from designing intricate dresses to football cleats. 3D printing is set to become the future of the fashion industry.
Concepts for at home clothing printers have already been developed, which would allow customers to buy digital designs and print them in the comfort of their own home, taking customisation to a new heights.
Clothes That Make Payments
Image via Håkan Dahlström on Flickr
This concept developed by MasterCard and designer Adam Selman hasn’t hit the market just yet, but the idea is game-changing. The dress, gloves, earrings, and sunglasses would be equipped with minichips that contain your credit card information. Users would wave the object in front of a reader to pay for their purchase.
The chip would be hooked up to your phone much like Apple Pay or Android Pay. The clothing is set to be available in the second half of 2016.
Solar Panel Jackets
Video via Tommy Hilfiger on YouTube
Wearing a bunch of bulky solar panels on your clothing, doesn’t seem like the most appealing thing, But, the technology creates solar power that can do awesome things like charge your phone.
Tommy Hilfiger brought solar panels to the mainstream last winter when he released a jacket embedded with them across the back and many other designers have experimented with the panels, creating parkas and dresses that incorporate the solar cells.
Luckily, the design for the panels is becoming more thin and flexible, so that we can move more toward creating and sustaining our own energy with our clothes.
Fermented Fashion: Fabric Made From Beer and wine
Artist Donna Franklin and scientist Gary Cass have collaborated on an incredible project in which they created a seamless textile using fermented wine and beer.
The fabric made from wine is an interesting marriage of science and design.
Wine is carefully fermented for several days, at the end of which a “skin” formation is produced. In this state, the substance takes on characteristics one would expect from something made from old wine: it has a strong smell and feels slimy. However, once the material is allowed to dry, the delicate cellulose material feels very similar to Due to the fabric’s streamlined production process, it is cheap and easy to manufacture.The low cost gives a broader range of designers another organic material option. The fabric is able to be “grown” into essentially any shape imaginable. This creates potential for it to be used in seamless, one-piece garments that produce little to no waste when cut to be sewn into clothing. It can also eliminate the need for sewing thread as a raw material, as well as the entire sewing process.
For the beer dress, the process starts with beer, which is fermented. A bacteria named Acetobacter is then added to the beer.The reason for adding in the bacteria is for converting the liquid into a raw fiber material. A natural bacteria taking care of the typically complex and toxic process of creating a synthetic fiber. Acetobacter is a “naturally found, friendly, non-infectious, non-harmful bacteria.”
The beer dress addressed a few glitches that the wine dress previously had. For starters, the fabric quality of the beer dress is much higher. The wine dress looked (and smelled) exactly like what it was made from. If you look at the resulting fabric on the beer dress, you would never guess that it was made from beer at all. The textile is soft, white, odorless and in fact, similar to cotton both chemically and by the hand of it. The fiber’s official name is “Nanollose Microbial Cellulose.”
Additionally, the wine dress fabric had come out rather stiff, only flexible when kept somewhat wet. It also has an odd texture that made it stick to the skin. Conversely, the fabric of the beer dress bends and drapes much more easily than it’s predecessor, and is much more comfortable to wear.
Clothing inspired by drinks!!!!
Intel marries fashion and technology
Smart sports bra
Intel’s Curie chip, the Aeros Sports Bra reacts to levels of stress through sweatiness and body temperature. Trimmed with tiny blue lights, it leverages shape memory by using sensors to make vents in the bra’s band, opening and closing it automatically.The sports bra can intuitively respond to perspiration, respiration and body temperature. This responsive clothing enables the wearer to break through barriers such as overheating to achieve peak performance.
And my favourite innovation
Intel released a new marketing campaign showing off the incredible experiences its technology allows. One of them was this smart dress. To create this dress, the technologic brand, already New York Fashion Week partner, associated with the Ezra and Tuba Çetin sisters, but also with innovative designers and wearables makers.
The Intel powered garments, along with the full collection of swim, sportswear and footwear, illustrate the potential of future integrations of fashion and technology at its best. Fashion brands grabbing innovation insights from tech events like the CES and incorporating tech discretely into their designs are definitely the Future of Fashion.