CFB recently curated a fashion tech show for the Youth Mobile Festival, aka YOMO, in our hometown Shanghai.
YOMO is a part of the Mobile World Congress, and the organization wanted to inform and inspire youth in China about how fashion and technology are not only interrelated but also mutually beneficial in the evolution of both industries.
CFB thus scoured the planet for some of the most interesting fashion tech available. There are many amazing ideas that are currently circulating, but we also found out that most of them have not yet been put into practice… but in the end, we found 7 designers from Australia, Iran, Portugal, Burma, the US, the UK, and of course China that we thought all offered something unique in this dialogue between fashion and technology.
So here is a roundup of pictures from the designers we featured, as well as the videos we made!
Content is a local brand founded by an architect-turned-designer called Zero. The designer has collaborated with many artists and companies in order to push the boundaries of fashion, and for this collection she worked with Swarovski to create pieces that truly dazzled the audience. This collection is clearly inspired by the beauty of technology and motherboards in particular, and we would love to see the next iteration integrate with some sort of functional technology.
Did you know that fashion invented computing? Punch cards from Jacquard Looms automated weaving patterns and were similar to punch cards later used in the 20th century for data input, output, and storage. Punch cards were invented in 1745 by Jacques de Vaucanson, while the Jacquard Loom itself wasn’t invented until 1804. 80 years later, Herman Hollerith filed a patent for an electro-mechnical device that could read information encoded on punch cards; this tech lead to the founding of the Tabulating Machine Co. which eventually became IBM.
Now computers have returned the favor to fashion, automating and actualizing complex patterns for wovens and knits, and knitwear architect Steven Oo is at the forefront of knitwear technology and innovations. His knitwear was compared to sculpture by the New York Times and the designer is well-known in the industry for his artistic, architectural approach to knitwear.
While most knitwear is flat or 2-dimensional, Steven Oo designs in 3 dimensions, giving depth and structure to his work. He constantly experiments with new techniques and machines to create futuristic knitwear that is beautifully constructed thanks to modern technology. However, the repetition in his work creates mesmerizing patterns that, although created by machines, also have an organic quality to them.
Nasim Sehat is an architect and concept designer born and raised in Iran. Her works are inspired by naïve art and minimalism.
Her collection of 3D printed eyewear with detachable spectacles is the result of the close examination of cosmopolitan needs to express and challenge individuality. Nasim’s abstract notion of fashion is always present in her designs, and derives from popular culture, music and comic books, villains and superheroes.
Biz Eyes is composed of a base frame made from a sturdy transparent resin where you can attach a series of different 3D printed spectacles that range from ovals to spikes to geometrical compositions and more. Thanks to the interlocking joints, an easy exchange of styles can be made by turning them 25 degrees and screwing another pair on. Biz Eyes gives the user a chance to adapt and change, interpret and reinterpret, express and explore themselves through the use of an accessory that has become vital in our cosmopolitan lives.
Kasia Molga is a media artists/designer/environmentalist and creative coder who works at the intersection of art, science, design and technology. Through her practice she examines changes in our perception and relationship with the planet in the context of climate change and unforeseen futures in this increasingly technologically mediated world.
She creates interactive, participatory and immersive visual and spatial experiences and narratives, often using Open Source and Hardware technologies and techniques, bespoke electronics, user interfaces and code.
Her project “Human Sensor” examines breathing as an interface between the environment and our inner-selves (“invironment”), highlighting our own bodies as the sensor for diagnosing the condition and thus health of our surroundings.
Conceptually, this suit not only detects pollution, but also visualizes harmful particulate matter.
Human Sensor was commissioned and produced by Invisible Dust.
Imperial Motion uses a special fabric called Nano Cure Tech.
It is a specially-treated ripstop with self-healing capabilities when small punctures or tears occur. Simply rub your fingers over the puncture for a few seconds and your clothes are as good as new!
Paula Cheng is a New-York based fashion designer and entrepreneur, working primarily in knitwear.
This collection is entitled “The Beast Within”, and is simultaneously soft and strong, structured and organic. Long threads are juxtaposed with chunky, tight knits that give the pieces depth.
Paula is a graduate of the inaugural class of the Fashion Design and Society MFA program at Parsons the New School for Design, where she specialized in research-based designs, deconstructive knitwear and complex free-form draping. During her tenure at the MFA program, she was the winner of the Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty competition and a finalist at the Feel the Yarn Competition in Florence.
She continues to experiment with new technologies and fabrics, and is one of the most innovative knitwear designers in the world.
Threadsmiths makes the last t-shirt you’ll ever need to buy.
These pieces are hydrophobic, which means it is not only water-resistant but also stain resistant. Upon contact with this special material, liquids simply roll off, leaving your clothes clean and dry.