Over the years, New York Fashion Week has become an opportunity to not only showcase clothing, but also new advances in art and technology. This week’s roundup highlights just a few of the techy creations on the runway this year.
Zac Posen has partnered with Google’s Made with Code initiative to design and build a little black dress that lights up with LEDs. The lights twinkle in various patterns coded by fashion engineer Maddy Maxey. According to Posen, the resulting garment evokes Los Angeles after dark. Besides creating a beautiful dress, Made with Code aims to inspire girls and women to learn to code—and to learn more about computer science, a field notorious for excluding women.
While Posen is bringing tech to the runway, London-based designer Gareth Pugh has forgone any traditional means of showcasing his work whatsoever, in favor of an “immersive multimedia fashion experience.” For his show on September 4, he transformed Pier 36 into a series of chambers that included modern dance performances, three interactive films, and even a tornado. According to Pugh, the installation was based on British folklore: “It’s very much about the seasons, paganism, and referencing gods of the harvest and gods of the sea.”
On Monday, Twitter premiered their new “Twitter Halo” at longtime partner Tommy Hilfiger’s show. The Twitter Halo is a multi-camera device that captures 360-degree videos to be shared in real time on Twitter. The device allows viewers to look at the clothes from all angles, just by scrolling through the brand’s Twitter feed.
Indeed, fashion and social media go hand-in-hand, and Fashion Week has been the perfect space for newer platforms to gain traction. Periscope, a livestreaming platform owned by Twitter, has been used by several brands, including Spanish brand Desigual, which armed one of its models with a Periscope livestream to provide viewers with a first-person perspective on what it’s like to participate in a show. With the hashtag #fashionunfiltered, designers, bloggers, and models alike are using the platform to give viewers a live, unedited look at fashion week from behind the scenes. Who says high fashion isn’t accessible?