Embracing Technology at London Fashion Week

Richard Dodgson
22 September 2014

Fashion has truly embraced the digital age. With bloggers gracing the front row at major catwalk shows and the 498,338 #LFW posts on Instagram to date, very few industries of this size have adapted so well to the explosion of social media.

In addition to the integration of social media, there has been a wave of advocacy for wearable technology since Katy Perry wore a light up dress at the Met Ball in 2010. Technology is being incorporated in every creative way possible both on and off the catwalk indicating that technology and fashion will surely continue to become synonymous with each other.

Richard Nicoll's SS15 collection saw the collaboration with Studio XO, demonstrating one of the first examples of truly beautiful wearable technology. The glowing slip dress was created using a fibre optic based fabric with integrated high intensity LED lights, allowing the dress to light up and change colour throughout the show. Matthew Drinkwater, Head of the Fashion Innovation Agency at the CFE commented, "The gasps were audible as the dress appeared, it was a huge moment for fashion technology. We'd built something that was truly desirable". It is predicted that this will mark the integration of hi-tech materials into designer collections.

Another high profile example of the increasing interest in wearable technology is the Apple Watch. The launch of this new watch, which comes in 6 different colours and styles, closely follows the appointment of Angela Ahrendts, former CEO of Burberry, who joined Apple as Head of Retail in May 2014. One thing is for certain - wearable technology is set to become a future trend.

This season Topshop created its "most socially accessible fashion show to date", says the brand itself. In a bid to include the Topshop fan base, the SS15 catwalk show was streamed directly in to its stores showcasing the new collection to shoppers.

To further immerse its fans in one of the standout and most over-subscribed shows of London Fashion Week, Topshop introduced a public sharing Instagram screen into their flagship store windows. The public were then encouraged to post their own images using the Topshop hashtag to have their images featured in the feed. The concept of the digital catwalk experience continues to develop every season, increasing in popularity and accessibility.

Burberry provides yet another example of a designer label maximising the use of technology. The brand was one of the first to utilise Twitter's 'Buy Now' button for their SS15 show where online viewers could purchase nail varnish straight from the catwalk. Twitter users will now be able to pay by tweet when they buy, again demonstrating the brands declaration to weave digital technology into its shows season after season.

As an event producer, technology has added an important string to our bow, now being able to pull off so many new and amazing experiences. It is great to see its extensive use throughout London Fashion Week offering previously never possible experiences to the wider public. Its integration has brought a mass audience into a previously exclusive world, which is to the benefit of everyone, especially designers who can now share their key collections to a global audience. Now that's something to Like and Share.

Originally published by The Huffington Post
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