By CYRINE ETTRIKI | December 12, 2019

Cover photo from giphy / Instagram

Can fashion be considered as a digital piece in itself?  Recently, designers are considering the idea of creating fashion pieces inspired by prior digital work. Famously representing this new concept is a monogrammed handbag with flexible OLED digital screens by Louis Vuitton. Presented in one of his fashion shows, this masterpiece reveals moving images of cities and a sample of an internet browser. Leaving the public absolutely amazed, Louis Vuitton explains that his inventive accessory aims to “blur the boundaries between your smartphone and bag,” offering an interesting perception on the current innovative climate. 

Fashion designer Ying Gao, created robotic clothing that reacts to the chromatic spectrum. This piece includes electronic devices that generate dynamic changes when responding to their surrounding environments’ chromatic spectrum. This collection is a pioneer among the fashion industry, as the act of changing from two different states, stasis to movement, has never been presented in the past.

Some designers go beyond, by creating ‘digital clothes’ that don’t physically exist. This concept may further lend help in reversing and improving the negative effects that come with the clothing manufacturing industry.  By offering 3D-rendered garments that only exist in the virtual world, digital clothing can become wearable by digital avatars or superposed on an image of a person without taking physical shape. Many companies are using this method, such as Alexander McQueen and Calvin Klein. More recently, Dutch startup ‘The fabricant’ represents the world’s first digital-only fashion house. Sold as a digital clothing piece for 9.500$, is it more beneficial for the consumer to switch to digital, rather than continuing with traditional methods and apparel?

A positive outcome by putting the aforementioned method into practice, would be its benefits towards the sustainable fashion movement against ‘fast fashion.’ This new method assures a greener alternative for the environment. Plus, as we are already living in a severely digitized world, this new method would only further reflect our advancements in modernisation. 

On the contrary, what negative aspects could digitalization bring about? In a panel discussion held by a London based startup, the audience present were quick to state that digital fashion would only encourage more consumption. It was also emphasized that this new “type” of fashion, would be perceived as dishonest, being that it does not exist.

Following my last point, it is clear that digital fashion needs some time to grow on leaders and society. However, as the number of designers adopting this method increases, it is obvious to see that this is the beginning of a potentially vast and successful market.

Gif from giphy on Instagram

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