Fashion Innovation

Has Marketing Killed Innovative Fashion?


Marketing Killed Innovative Fashion. If the future is already here, then for sure it is not evenly distributed. The same applies to the distribution of innovation in fashion. The distribution, in this case, is reflected by which fashion innovations receive media coverage and therefore public attention. There are amazing innovations developed each day such as synthetic silk from spiders, lab-grown skin, leather substitutes from mushrooms, nanomaterials and nanocomposites, bio-cultures, integrated smart sensors.

And yet, when asked about next-gen fashion most respondents recall the ‘Twitter dress’ from Cute Circuit and other similar ‘traffic light’ looking-like outfits. In all fairness, it is not much to see in a lab-grown leather jacket as it looks just like…leather. There’s nothing to see, no lights to shine and capture the public’s attention, therefore, no awareness of the real innovations.

Marketing Killed Innovative Fashion---cute-circuit-jackets

Marketing Killed Innovative Fashion

For example, not many of you know that almost 1,100 new types of textiles are currently manufactured with nanoparticles (between 1 and 100 billionths of a metre). Silica nanoparticles used as coatings to make garments waterproof.

Silver nanoparticles that kill microbes, bacteria and fungi to prevent the unpleasant odours they cause. Sunblocking titanium dioxide and zinc oxide that acts as UV-blocking and stops consumers from getting sunburnt through the garments or even nanoparticles with antistatic properties and many more.


That’s why we’ve put together five truly innovative fashion creations that you can buy right now. Time to show you some real fashion innovations that we’ve uncovered behind the led lights Chrismas tree looking like dresses pumped up by obscene amounts of money spent on marketing.

Marketing Killed Innovative Fashion – 4D Printed Trainers

The hype around 3D printing is about to die. The tech promised perfect custom fit for every item of apparel you own. Moreover, it would have come without the long waiting months as each bespoke piece of the garment would have been printed right before your eyes. In reality, 3D printing tech was just a glorified 2D layering 2D hence the silence behind the tech.

However, a new tech suggestively called 4D Printing is giving the phrase “light on your feet” a new meaning. Adidas has designed a new type of trainer by utilising a technology developed by Carbon, a Silicon Valley start-up.

Named Futurecraft 4D Runner the trainers designed from a pool of resin and then bathed with a special light to make it solidify and firm up. The ‘Digital Light Synthesis’ process is smoother, stronger and up to 100 times faster than conventional 3D printing.

The tech is up and running as Adidas has already produced 5,000 pairs of 4D Runners last year and intends to manufacture 100,000 more by the end of this year. more than, 4D printing allows for the sneakers to be created to your foot’s unique blueprints thus ending out discomfort, sizing problems and stock shortages, all done while you wait in the store.

Marketing Killed Innovative Fashion – Leather Jacket Grown In The Lab

To the ethical fashion, consumer meat is murder real leather is murder. And while mushroom substitutes or other kinds of synthetic versions are kind to animals, are not so good for the environment.

That until now as Brooklyn-based Modern Meadow has modified cultures of living cells to produce leather but without the cow. The skin is grown in special lab tubes, rather than in the fields. Modern Meadow’s main ambition is to design leather goods for the luxury landscape while reducing cruelty, bloodsheds, consumption of water, food, and methane emissions as so common in the leather manufacturing industry.

The secret lies in a special type of collagen that matures ready for ‘farming’ in two weeks. The resulting skin is then tanned and finished in ways that minimise the environmental impact. On the top of that, the skin’s characteristics can be changed by editing the DNA of the cells to adjust thickness, elasticity, aesthetic and strength to match any type of wanted animal.

Marketing Killed Innovative Fashion – Spacesuit At The Office

Created by Ministry of Supply, the Apollo 3 shirt is a true space age garment. Made with the same ‘Phase Change Material’ composite designed by NASA to control its astronauts’ body temperature.

“Phase Change Material operates like a battery,” said Gihan Amarasiriwardena, co-founder of Ministry of Supply. “If you’re too warm, the material absorbs heat and when your temperature falls, it releases the collected heat to warm you up.”

Ministry of Supply is a unique fashion brand that has emerged from MIT and the team has also designed a ‘3D blazer’ constructed from a foam-like material that requires limited tailoring and a new type of coffee-infused odour-controlling, ‘smart’ socks.

Marketing Killed Innovative Fashion – Spiderman Fabrics

A common criticism of fashion in general and fast fashion, in particular, is that nothing is built to last anymore. Until now as a next-generation type of fabric has made it to the mainstream: spider silk. The material is already in use by some brands, including Adidas.

AMSilk is the company behind the innovation by genetically engineering E Coli bacteria to produce Biosteel, a material much lighter but more elastic and fast stronger than metal: a pencil-thick strand can stop a fully loaded, 380 ton heavy Boeing 747.

Marketing Killed Innovative Fashion – Interactive Fashion?

After criticising so much the led lights clothes at the beginning of the article, I am going back to say it is not all that bad. Well, at least this is what they say. Based on the premises that certain consumers segments purchase fashion for status while others consume to satisfy certain hedonic needs, it is assumed that the more tech-savvy segment should consume fashion to communicate and display emotional states. Yes, that is through digital messages and emojis displayed right on their garments.

So here we are, back at Cute Circuit and their new InfiniTShirt. The garment is equipped with a microphone, accelerometer, camera, and speakers, don’t ask me why! But hey, it is washable. By hand.


According to Ryan Genz, Cute Circuit’s co-founder, “Fashion is an expression of who we are, and an efficient mode of communication. But there’s a disconnect between our clothes and our culture because fashion hasn’t yet embraced the digital aspects observed in so many other parts of society.”

Can’t argue with that but so far Cute Circuit’s creations are yet to appeal to any relevant segments of fashion consumers. There is the occasional (I did not say sponsored) usage by celebrities such as U2 on their 360 Tour, and Katy Perry but that’s about all. At least, Cute Circuit has a recycling back up plan to ensure that its “smart garments” don’t end up in the landfill.

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