With all of the smart car and smartphone gadgets of the 21st century, where are our smart clothes?
This question has again and again plagued the world of fashion, which at times may seem apprehensive to the dramatic changes in the aesthetic and construction of garments. When looking towards the future, the invasion of technology perplexes consumers who are looking for something futuristic yet realistic to rip from the runway. Well, here are five futuristic trends that serve both functional and wearable reference to the future of garments:
1. Commuter Jacket
Topping the list of future fashion-tech must haves comes Levis' merged venture to create the ‘Levis Commuter x Jaquard by Google Trucker Jacket’. This innovative garment is coated by the modern aesthetic of a jean jacket. Technical program leader at Google's ATAP, Ivan Poupyrev remarks; "what we've now got is a functional and fashionable garment in the Commuter Jacket where technology is serving a very clear purpose". Designed with conductive yarn that enables touch interactivity along the left cuff, referred to as a smart tag, wearers are able to use touch technology to tap, swipe or hold to render functions that include answering/blocking calls, linking social platforms, changing playlists or accessing voice activated navigation services. Built for the urban cyclist riders have the ability to program the textile interface to recognise gestures with functions: "We don’t want to define what functionality is the most important, so we’ve given categories for users to choose from… Wearables to date have just been able to do one thing, in our case the garment does what you want it to do.”
2. The Smart Coat
Similar to the previous smart outerwear ensemble comes another modern interpretation of the blended worlds by start-up company Emel & Andaris. Aesthetically remaining true to the trench, this coat is packed with an extra savvy tech punch. Concealed in the Smart Coat's lining is a lightweight patented system that dispels heat through its specially formulated polymer. If you can overlook the need to carry the battery pack in your pocket prepare yourself to be cosy all winter long with the click of a finger, literally. Apart from being the safest and healthiest way of conducting heat there are added benefits to the FIR (far infrared) heat energy constructed from various panels across the garment, including; pain relief, increased blood flow, reduced inflammation and oedema, enhanced white blood cell function, accelerated healing in soft tissue injury, reduced muscle spasm, and decreased joint stiffness. (Emel & Andaris©)
3. The Thesis Lift
What does a rocket scientist; an orthopaedic surgeon, a mechanical engineer and a shoe designer have in common? Not a trick question, the answer is Thesis Couture. Founder Dolly Singh has leaned on the trademarked system known as ‘structural interlocking architecture’ in order to create to make ‘a four-inch stiletto feel like a wedge’. Consider this the glass slipper of footwear. The one common thread all women alike share is the desire for comfort and the inability to find that in heeled shoes that contort, squeeze and pinch the foot into early retirement. Built around patented high grade polymers the prototype stiletto offers load-balancing, interlocking technology. Using the resources of medical and scientific geniuses, literally, toe bed geometry allows the big toe to remain in a natural position where the platform is designed like the outsole of a running shoe, improving balance and absorbing impact shock. Unlike any other stiletto the heels are formed of different parts, specifically for the right and for the left. This attention to detail and individualisation of how the right from left meet the under-sole optimizes distribution, reduces the wear and tear, whilst increasing support and balance.
4. The Jammer Coat
Ever wanted to disappear and not be found? Well, Vienna based architecture firm Coophimmelb(l)au has developed a coat using metallic fabrics that blocks radio waves, essentially the oversized garment "enables its user to disappear: Google cannot find you anymore,"according to CHBL. Giving Harry Potter's invisibility cloak a run for its money, the textile cloak is compromised with circular wave patterns of fabric allows the wearer to fall off the grid unreachable via mobile devices, untraceable via credit cards. The white material is patterned with black spots to further distort the natural form giving "an illusion of strange multiple body parts, which hides and frees the individual physicality". This coat will become popularised by celebrities who desire to avoid the flashing glares of the paparazzi on a not-so-cute Starbucks run.
5. Tracker Wear
Acting as the arch nemesis of the jammer coat Asher Levine introduced his 2013 collection with the integration of Bluetooth services. Collaborating with Phone Halo to implement Bluetooth technology that "communicates with an embedded computer chip in our weekend bag and in our premium jackets and in our gloves." With this technology loss prevention is the tip of the futuristic iceberg of innovation. Linked to your smartphone apparel can be tracked via the customized TrackR app when they are out of sight. In conjunction to the specialised tracking app, there is a button activated "ring" the garment will give off to help you locate it. If the item is outside of a 30 mile radius GPS will activate to continue to track the item in Google Maps, good riddance to all those purse snatchers!