Fashion with Function
Designers are always looking for new ways to make fashion more interesting and dynamic. Technology offers exciting ways to bring function to apparel and accessories. Here are some of the trends happening in wearable fashion right now.
Someday soon you may be able to power your electronics with your clothes. Start-up Wearable Solar has begun using flexible solar panels to make lightweight wired garments that allow you to charge you smartphone up to 50 percent if worn in the sun for a full hour. York-based Voltaic Systems makes a collection of bags that can charge a variety of devices.
Air quality is becoming an increasing concern in urban centers. Several wearable air filters have begun to emerge. The Hand Tree, designed by Alexandr Kostin, is worn on the wrist and sucks up and filters polluted air before recycling it back into the atmosphere. With a refillable carbon filter and a rechargeable battery, this device is completely geared towards environmental sustainability.
Some designers are merging fashion and interactive art. Garments from the Rainbow Winters clothing line respond to the environment in visual ways. The dress, for instance, is made with holographic leather and reacts to sound. As the surrounding volume increases, the dress begins to illuminate and make “visual music.” The bathing suit reacts to light, with the center panel turning into purple dots in the sun. Designer Ying Gao has created a set of dresses that move when someone is looking at them using eye-tracking technology. When the garment is gazed at for a time, tiny motors move parts of it in patterns.
Who said fashion can’t be fun?