What goes around comes around. And around, and around. Outside of a handful of innovative brands – many of whom you will see on these very pages – fashion is stuck in a continual retro-regurgitation of past styles, lightly polished to look new and desirable each season.
In recent times, these cycles have gotten smaller and smaller, as designers search for “new” ideas to put into the multiple collections they have to keep racing out in order to satisfy their balance sheets. The nascent “wearables” business, though, seems to raise the prospect of a genuine new dawn. Form will be forced to follow function as technology becomes integrated into our everyday wardrobe.
At the recent London Collections, designer A Sauvage and partner Microsoft showcased a pair of trousers that will charge your phone when it’s in your pocket. The technology – known as inductive charging – uses an electromagnetic field to transfer energy between your strides and your phone. On the down-side, you’ll have to plug your trousers in overnight to charge them up.
Other devices such as Nike’s FuelBand, Google Glass eyewear (which has just become available on Mr Porter’s American site) and Apple’s much talked about forthcoming iWatch are all aiming to hit the mainstream and become the next billion-selling “gamechanger”. These devices will monitor our fitness and health, make it easier and faster to communicate, or simply keep all of our energy-hungry items charged. In the not so-distant future, we’re going to look back and wonder how we ever lived without our digital jumpers.
Technology will increasingly dictate how we look and fashion will need to respond to this with the items we see on the catwalks. The industry is already showing willing – Christopher Kane, James Long and Givenchy all showed digitally inspired collections. Burberry, Gieves & Hawkes and Brioni have already introduced digital technology into their stores and it won’t be long before it will be in the garments themselves: coats that will be able to Instagram your #OOTD* and bracelets that will tell you when you need to visit the doctor.
Technology will become the starting point of designs, and brands will do their best to make these items as beautiful as possible. Now, that is an exciting future for fashion.
Marcus Jaye is the founder of TheChicGeek.co.uk. Tweet @thechicgeekcouk or find him on Instagram at thechicgeek.co.uk
*Outfit of the Day, you dork