Serial entrepreneur and billionaire Chris Burch knows fashion. One would assume this from the fact that he and his brother Bob took a $2,000 investment and turned it into a thriving business valued at $165 million in 1976 while an undergraduate at Ithaca College. Who would have thought that selling $10 sweaters for $15 would be the beginning of a long history of his intuitive ability to turn innovative thinking into realized success? Proof of that is that he is the founder and CEO of Burch Creative Capital, a domestic and international real estate investor, and the user of an abundant supply of creativity and imagination.
So, when Chris Burch talks, the wise will listen. Chris wrote an interesting article featured on Engaget about the fashion and technology industry and a merging of the two. The trend of combining the two industries results in better health, greater expression for the creator and wearer, improve material quality and better commerce. In the article Chis looked at the advancement in personal listening devices from the boom box to the Walkman to the iPod as part of the fashion industry and mentions the DareDroid and Pseudomorphs dress creations by designer Anouk Wipprecht as wearable technology. Although many would say that the dress designs are reminiscent of the Star Trek collective race, the Borg, however, there is more wearable fashion that could shape the future in more meaningful ways. One dress, the Bubelle Dress, uses sensors to change colors according to the mood of the wearer. One suggested use for this technology is to clue men in on how their companion is feeling. However, an A-line or closer fitting garment would be more appealing to many. Other fashion using sensors, such as fitness monitors, also offer wearers learning technology that improve their experiences as well.
Chris makes a good point about fashion designed to protect the wearer and to improve communication for rescue teams as well as garments created from recycled materials. There are also technology at work creating new textiles, such as engineered spider silk called Spiber ,and designed and engineered leather grown in a lab created by Modern Meadow to make it more sustainable and improve its properties. Two jackets definitely should be mentioned because one allows the wearer touch interactivity to tap, toggle and swipe their smart phone while wearing it and the other has an intelligent heating system inside that uses far infrared heat energy that the wearer absorbed to heat the muscles and increase blood flow.
In closing Chris tells us both industries working together makes the world a more beautiful, creative and protected place. An example of more beautiful is The Unseen created by Lauren Bowker as well as a backpack, scarf, and other products that change color as a result of body temperature, air pressure, and other factors including seasons of the year. An example of functional is the Tech Tats from Chaotic Moon Studios. It has the potential to be a valuable tool in medicine and banking. At this point, it must be applied by hand but the future may offer a temporary tattoo which can be easily applied and not only control your phone and monitor your vitals , but also hold your personal and financial information. Forbes list some of the new tec-fashion that holds great promise. There is a bright future and potential for the blending of fashion and technology.