Tech fashion forecast for 2013

What’s going on in the intersection of technology and fashion?tech fashion forecast

Right now, designer Anouk Wipprecht is in Los Angeles, working out of the LA Makerspace from March 19th until April 18th. Wipprecht is known for projects like Intimacy Black, a dress of smart e-foils whose transparency varies based on interpersonal encounters, and the gamified smart cocktail-dispensing DareDroid dress.

She’ll be hosting prototyping classes and a workshop.

On April 17th-19th, the 9th Annual Smart Fabrics conference takes place right here in San Francisco.

The conference will feature “topics on wearable electronics in a military environment, the cultural effects of design, reshaping electronics for the human body, flexible and wearable printed silicon technology, to name a few.” The opening keynote will be given by Eric Migicovsky, the founder of Pebble.

At FIT, there’s a fascinating exhibit that “that explores fashion’s relationship to technology from the mid-18th century to our modern, computerized age.”

This February featured several fashion/technology hackathons, including FashTech at Startup Weekend in SF and the Hearst Fashion Hack in New York. Startup Weekend hopes to do another Fashtech soon.

Last week at SXSW, Artefact user experience designer Jennifer Darmour presented on smart clothing.

Your can read her excellent blog about wearable technology here. We also recommend her manifesto on making wearable computing actually wearable.

Also at SXSW, Google debuted an obnoxious concept piece: a talking shoe that nags you to exercise.

And tweets to your friends if you’re virtuous enough to jog. Created in partnership with Adidas, this seems like the worst kind of invasive pseudo-AI to us. Luckily this isn’t a planned product, just an experiment from Google’s Art, Copy & Code project.418be795bb8d558e_qrcodedres.preview

Alexander Wang, now heading up Balenciaga, is currently doing a collaborative textile creation project with Samsung, “to create a new print based on doodles, sketches and photographs that are being contributed via smartphone by some of the top names in fashion.”

In the Fall, Vivienne Tam’s QR code fashions will be available.

We kind of dig the way the stencil-like images reference street art and the body as billboard, especially with the black lipstick.

Under Armour is launching a wearable performance monitor that goes around your chest this spring, and may be working on touchscreen clothing. Touchscreen clothing would be a lovely realization of Larry Niven’s printed sleeve watches.

Gigaom has a breakdown of other trends to watch for, like functional jewelry (think Jawbone UP and the handsome Misfit Shine), the watch renaissance, and of course the battle to make Google Glass cool.

That last isn’t going so well; a search for “Google Glass dork” brings up 424,000 results.

We’ll keep you posted on these and other developments, as we finally get clothes with a switch.

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This post originally appeared on the T324 blog.

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