Noémie Balmat co-founded “Futur 404”, a media platform, and is the co-author of the book “Futur”. Here, she reveals the leading Fashion Tech trends, and reminds us of the need to make them part of a broader societal and philosophical discussion.
“Today, innovation is a major consideration for all the fashion houses that have integrated research teams around key issues including ecology, technological innovation, artificial intelligence, etc. In the field of sustainable development, the whole issue of new materials is a focus. There’s also a lot of thought going into medical applications that work towards a healthier body. To correct adolescent scoliosis, for example, the Unyk start-up has studied the possibility of making 3D-printed corsets, designed by fashion people and envisioned as fashion accessories. Integrating electronic elements in textiles themselves also multiplies their possibilities. We already incorporate batteries in clothing and accessories, to light up the inside of a bag for example. All of this transforms a wardrobe’s aesthetics and functionality, but innovation also infuses the entire fashion value chain, optimizing production as a whole, from the garment pattern to the sales conditions. The point of our work is not just to identify innovations but to provide a critical perspective on them as well. Throughout human history, we tend to start thinking about the consequences of progress when those consequences arise, but we rarely anticipate them. We talk about concepts like “augmented man” and “connected clothes”… But do we think about the potential dangers of those innovations? Will the electronics in our clothing one day be integrated into our own bodies? How do we recycle connected clothing? We start with the premise that innovations and their consequences have to be considered simultaneously. It’s the only way to move towards a future that we all want to share in.”
AUGMENTED MAN : FASHION TECH AT PREMIÈRE VISION PARIS
Once again this season, Fashion Tech is one of the highlights at Première Vision Paris, with the notion of “augmented man” serving as a guiding thread, to explore how much garments can help overcome our own capacities, our own human condition. An exploration in three spaces:
1/ An offer from exhibitors revolving around research upstream of innovation conducted by European competitiveness clusters, and a selection of intelligent materials and companies specialized in developing advanced technologies for the creative fashion industry.
2/ An exhibition presenting three smart garments created by fashion tech designers who have worked on the identification and possibilities of an “augmented human being”.
3/ A series of conferences with opening remarks by Pascal Morand, president of the Federation de la Haute Couture et de la Mode, which is a partner in this project. These masterclasses will address specific questions, such as How can fashion brands imbed innovation and technology? How can exhibitors help them do so?
> Next February, join us once again at the Wearable Lab, a village entirely dedicated to Fashion Tech in Hall 6.