TECHNOLOGY IN FASHION
This week I was honoured to speak on the panel of the PURE London trade show. The idea was to discuss innovations and trends that are happening in the fashion retail sector at the moment. One of my co-panelists was Dessy, who is a founder of Utelier.com – a company that connects innovative fashion designers with the world’s best manufacturers.
During our discussion Dessy mentioned a very interesting point, which kinda stuck with me: she said that the technology is increasingly lowering the entry barriers for new designers to create their own collections. In other words, nowadays almost anyone who wants to design, manufacture and sell clothes, can do so if they put their mind to it.
And since the technology is constantly evolving this movement is definitely going to grow in the future.
Intrigued by this whole idea, I started digging into this subject. I mean, maybe I can create my own fashion brand someday!
Why not? After all, Chiara Ferragni did…
And before you judge me on my creativity or the number of my Instagram followers (which definitely doesn’t compare to Chiara’s), let me share with you my findings on this subject.
A LOOK INTO THE FUTURE OF FASHION DESIGN
When it comes to innovation in fashion design, we need to differentiate between two major groups:
- END CONSUMER who wants to design her own clothes
- FASHION DESIGNER who wants to set up a brand
The main difference between those two are not their skills, but the purpose for which they are designing clothes.
While the first group mainly designs for themselves, occasionally making a few extra sales on sites like Etsy, Shpock or on eBay, the other group approaches fashion designing as a business venture with an idea of creating a collection that they can sell to retailers.
I’M A CONSUMER –
I WANT TO DESIGN MY OWN FASHION
In the last couple of years we’ve seen an increasing amount of websites, that allow you to create or customise your own clothes, shoes and accessories. It’s also important to mention that the quality of the products and the varieties of designs are constantly improving (mainly thanks to technology, of course).
The bottom line is that soon it will become super easy to become a designer of your own clothes! After all, who knows your style better than you?
MY DESIGN EXPERIMENTS:
For example, Shoes of Prey lets you customise your own shoes literally from your heels to toe! I spent about 20 min on the website and came up with these two design variations… let me know which one you prefer!
ArtOfWhere lets you create dresses, tops, skirts and a whole lot of accessories with your own fabric pattern and then sell it via the ArtOfWhere shop.
I must admit, it took me more than a few hours to come up with an interesting fabric pattern that is unique and high in resolution at the same time… All I can say is – it was a good way to test my Photoshop skills.
But, as you can see, once I’ve come up with a pattern, I could create a whole collection around it! Cheers to my humble fashion designer beginnings.
I predict that the amount of the “self-design & self-customise” websites is going to go up in the near future.
The biggest group to benefit from this trend are going to be bloggers. They already have a massive power on the buying decisions of customers. By being able to easily make their own beautiful collections they will gain a new income stream, by selling those items directly through their blog.
I’M A FASHION DESIGNER –
I WANT NO LIMITS
Fashion designers are probably some of the most creative humans on this planet. Until now their limit has been the time & money constraint as well as the availability of resources. With these technological innovations, the only limit that remains is their own creativity.
3D software solutions for fashion designers are getting more and more advanced. For example the 3D software developed by FashionLab which is featured in the video below is literally opening up new dimensions to fashion designers. The advantage of the virtual 3D sketches is that the designer can see the product from all the different angles and easily make any adjustments to the garment.
Biggest advantage – design collections quicker and with more flexibility!
3D PRINTED GARMENTS
Lastly, and I’m not going to lie – this is probably the area I’m most excited about! When 3D printing first came out, it literally blew my mind… how on earth can you print something in 3D? That’s like discovering that we can time travel…
Now, after I’ve finally managed to get my head around the technicalities, I can hardy contain my excitement about the possibilities it offers.
Innovative designers are now able to take their ideas to the next level, experiment and go beyond what once was considered possible.
Here are some examples of my favourite designers who use 3D printing:
I absolutely love these beautiful shoes! Bryan really takes shoe design to the next level!
n-e-r-v-o-u-s system is a really cool 3D printing company that is mainly focusing on creating 3D jewellery, but also experiments with 3D printed fabrics.
I predict that 3D printing will hit the mass market in the next 5-10 years. At the moment, we still have the barriers of limited materials and relatively small production sizes which make the 3D printers quite restricted in terms of products they can print. However, I am absolutely sure that our possibilities will expand over the next few years and we’ll be 3D printing more and more stuff!
What would be super cool is if we could recycle old products (plastics, fabrics etc.) and 3D print something new out of them straight away! Who backs me on this business idea? 😛
This blog post is a part of Design Blogger Competition organized by CGTrader.