This paper is a selected list of innovations that the author predicts will set trends, some of them are already, in the Fashion & Retail industry. The selection criteria is based on creative thinking and imagination that drove these innovations.
1. Business model innovation: It’s about delivering existing products that are produced by existing technologies to existing markets.
Focus narrowly: When Amazon bought over Quidsi (online retailer for Diaper) and Zappos (online shoe and apparel retailer), it allowed them considerable autonomy in serving their segments.
2. Big is in:
Large phone including the iPhone 6 Plus is forcing some fashion companies to redesign their pockets.
Throughout the design process, fashion companies try to consider every aspect of the way their customers live their lives, and changing mobile technology is no exception. Phablet fashion is already in play.
American Eagle's spokesperson:"Currently our men's pockets already accommodate the larger phones including the iPhone 6 [and 6 Plus]. Women's is still being evaluated."
Levi's Head of Global Design, Jonathan Cheung:"Without being iPhone 6-specific, our mantra, like [Steve Jobs'], will always be to design products that make people’s lives a little better.”
L.L. Bean's, J. Crew's, Lee Jeans are all working in this area
3. Bring them to life: Clothes come alive:
The burgeoning field of interactive textiles lets consumers gather information via their garments.
The seamless integration of “self-centric technology into everyday life” is where opportunity lies:
OMsignal, a Montreal-based company develops products and applications to help people live a fitter, healthier and happier life.
Designs men’s bio-metric shirts that monitor activity, physiological stress and fitness levels.
Performance-grade compression increases blood-flow, delivering more oxygen to your muscles, enhancing both performance levels and post-workout recovery.
4. Fashion that 'works' for you: Hussein Chalayan:
He integrates human body and clothing with technology, science and architecture, playing with the narratives constructed around culture and anthropology. His catwalk shows are often referred to as performances rather than fashion.
Imagine it's a bright, sunny day. You're sauntering down Main Street wearing your favourite Ween T-shirt and stop to admire the women's spinning class in the gym across the street. Suddenly the clouds roll in and it begins to pour on your cold, exposed head. Luckily for you, your Ween T-shirt senses the change in weather. The collar broadens to cover your neck, the sleeves automatically roll down to your wrists and a hood rises up to fit snugly over your head.
5. It 'grows' on you: Fashion designer Suzanne Lee’s Bio-couture
Her research harnesses nature to propose a radical future fashion vision: Can we grow a dress from a vat of liquid?
The BioShoe was grown in approximately four weeks. Says Lee, “we were interested in exploring how you might combine, in one product, materials that have been grown from different types of organism. So you might use one process, or one organism, to give you something very tough and structural but lightweight. And then you might use a different organism as an aesthetic wrapper.”
6. Eco-friendly: Levis water-less initiative:
Use cotton variety that requires less water and chemicals
Working with textile mills to reduce water usage
Enforce manufacturers to maintain high quality of water
Jeans use less water to get a worn-out look
Use old jeans as building blocks to create recycled denim
7. People-friendly: Adaptive clothing
Buttoning and zipping up pants is a challenge for people in wheelchairs
Clothing companies like Silvert’s specializes in disable adaptive clothing
Men’s adaptive wheelchair pants: The individual remains in a seated position. The individuals legs are inserted into the pant legs and drawn up to the upper thigh. The caregiver simply snaps the generous overlap into place. The person being dressed is left completely covered without ever having to stand. Assisted disrobing is just as easy.
8. Fabric innovation
Sound out: Swiss textiles producer Creation Baumann's 'Sonic' fabric is a range of sound-absorbing materials
Dry run: Climatex's 'Dualcycle Net' collection of fabrics features a special weave structure which absorbs moisture and then allows it to evaporate easily
9. Combining random objects together:
What value can a gas stove lighter possibly bring to your elegant gown?
The gas lighter is mostly cylindrical in shape and consists of a piezo-electric crystal. When pressure is applied it creates electric discharge.
Amanda Parkes designed the Piezing, a dress that uses piezoelectric discs and film to harness the body’s movement for electrical power, which is stored in a battery near the belly button. The battery can then be used to charge a favourite device.
And what do you think a mobile phone could do with your gown?
M-dress, designed by CuteCircuit: With a SIM card embedded in the dress’s tag, a microphone and speaker in the sleeve, and gesture-recognition software, the wearer can answer calls by simply raising her hand to her ear.
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