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The sartorial technology of modern times
The sartorial technology of modern times

The takeover of the fashion industry by technology is not recent. In fact, over time, the catwalk presentations have been reflecting new sewing methods, innovations in fabrics, materials or finishes, and even interaction with the audience has been improved. Following the most recent irreverent Met Gala, whose theme was Manus x Machina, the industry is once again being overtaken by a futuristic, extremely hi-tech vision.

In an online article in the well-known Time magazine, the spotlight is on 3D printing. Considering that the fashion industry is living in the "age of technology”, the publication recalls the innovations that have been most notable in the sector. They give an example of the floating crystal dress that can be guided by remote control, or the items that change according to the ambient temperature. In fact, the application of 3D technology in printing items, as Bradley Rothenberg, co-founder and CEO of nTopology, prophesised in an interview with Time, will revolutionise how clothing is produced. Take a look at the impact these changes might have on the fashion industry in the future in this video. If you want to know first hand who focuses on these inventive 3D creations, watch the testimony of Dutch designer Anouk Wipprecht.

On the national catwalks, it is not yet a question of three-dimensional technology, but the truth is that more and more coordinates that use surprising new production techniques are being presented. The creative process of Susana Bettencourt, for example, always begins in front of the computer screen. The production of the garments, 100% Portuguese and handcrafted, perfectly reproduces the colourful pixels that the young designer defines beforehand. With a career associated with Portugal Fashion’s Bloom, it is safe to say that, over the years, the platform has served for new designers to experiment. The androgynous nature of the items from the K L A R and Hibu. labels; the cut-outs by Inês Marques and Eduardo Amorim; garment recycling by UN[T], and the boldness of the finalists at the Bloom competition are a living portrayal of this assertion.

And because fashion’s involvement with technology goes beyond the catwalk, there have also been noteworthy innovations in the area of presentations and advertising. Remember the performance that designer Katty Xiomara introduced in the Portugal Fashion Celebration in October last year. Her spring-summer collection, now on sale, was presented at the time on the last floor of the Silo Auto car park, using a new format, which was more interactive and peculiar, moving away from the traditional fashion show. It was a spectacle of sound and vision, combining 8-bit aesthetics with the music of Japanese DJ Driver. Taking a leap to the international scene, the Pokémon Go game – the most recent global phenomenon – has been imaginatively integrated into advertising campaigns by high fashion labels, as reported by Vogue Portugal. This proves that the relationship market knows how to take advantage of and incorporate this new fever, adding value to engagement with consumers.

In the area of accessories, technological advances are also in a state of constant ebullition. Just look at the dual functions of rings, necklaces and bracelets with Bluetooth incorporated, or that can connect to your smartphone. A trend that has taken root and that has led the brands in this sector to develop jewellery that can count steps, calories, measure the distance travelled, as well as count the hours you’ve slept and how much rest you need. Swarovski is one of those brands.

Because the future is just around the corner and because today’s novelty is commonplace tomorrow, we will await the coming chapters of this happy marriage between technology and fashion, certain that we belong to a brave new world.