Introducing fashion technology
Fashion technology is not just about wearables. It includes the major innovations in textiles such as Tencel and Gore-Tex.
One of the big issues with fashion tech is its sustainability and recyclability. It is hard enough to persuade people to recycle a woolly jumper but if it is embedded with LEDs it may not be possible to recycle at all. The EU has a strict regulatory regime around electrical items which set recycling and recovery targets as well as limitations on the materials used.
Another major fashion trend that technology has enabled is mass customisation. This is facilitated by computer modelling, micro-manufacturing and 3D printing and can be used to both manufacture bespoke designs such as knitted jumpers, create near waste free trainers and make micro improvements to athletic performance.
Technology may breathe new life into stores with augmented and virtual reality both of which are slowly starting to become more mainstream and widely used. Augmented reality can add the online data which is missing from many physical stores. It can be used to combine information such as reviews, images of fashion shows and even data on the product's manufacturing process and raw materials with the ability to actually try on the clothes in store.
Finally, blockchain or “distributed ledger” technology is an exciting new way of ensuring that the data related to wearable devices, the sustainability journey and ownership of intellectual property rights remains accurate and secure. Watch out for an upcoming post which dives into the potential for blockchain technology in more detail.
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