From graphene to smart jewellery: how tech and fashion are colliding
Industry has to innovate, and fashion is no exception to this obvious rule. The interesting elements, however, are always in the detail of how such innovation is implemented. Fashion designers – somewhat familiar with the importance of detail – are having to become adept at employing sophisticated tools such as laser cutting, as well as new materials, including graphene. This allows brands to meet ever-increasing customer expectations as well as address cultural concerns – particularly environmental ones.
Stella McCartney, Aeance or Ministry of Supply are just a few among those pushing the boundaries of traditional fashion to invent the dress of tomorrow. From water-repellent jackets emulating the natural protection developed by plant life, to smart jewellery doubling as health trackers: here is a selection of the most cutting-edge apparel from 2018, paving the way for the industry standards of 2019.
Loro Piana’s anti-storm jacket
No need to brace yourself for morning commutes under the rain anymore: Loro Piana’s Storm Systems line combines natural fibres with advanced fabric technology. Its Rain System treatment which is applied to the surface of the jacket ensures that it remains water-repellent and protects against dust, dirt and liquid stains. The back of the fabric is windproof, and its light micromolecular and microporous absorbent membrane wicks perspiration outwards while preventing humidity from entering.
ECONYL Trench coat by Stella McCartney, eco-friendly tights by Aeance, and smart jewelry by Leaf Urban
Econyl is a process that recycles nylon waste from the ocean to create new fabric and remould it for fashion products. The material can be regenerated and reshaped infinitely without losing its virgin nylon quality. stellamccartney.com, £1,365
sleep tracking to meditation and breathing exercises, it also helps to monitor your health. The design shuns screens and buttons: data can be accessed via smartphone. johnlewis.com, £130
Aeance tights are a model of innovative eco-friendliness: even the Elastane component of this high-performance compression fabric is composed of recycled yarns. The material is warp-knitted while details, including the back pocket, are all laser cut. aeance.com, £180
Aeance’s jacket that naturally repels water
Using renewable primary products, ecorepel Bio imitates plants’ natural protection from water and aqueous dirt, resulting in the formation of water droplets in the morning dew, for example. Applied to the jacket, the thin film produced by ecorepel Bio ensures water is effectively repelled, and is permanently odourless as well as free from PFC. Sustainability meets high-performance. aeance.com, £468