It’s surprising to realize that fashion hasn’t changed much in the last two decades despite being one of the world’s biggest sectors with a predicted $3.3 trillion by 2030. There are still many countries where low-cost manual labor is easy to find and where production costs can be outsourced. In response to concerns about fair pay, pollution, and satisfying today’s hyper hyper-connectedness, new and intriguing technologies have emerged.
It is true that we live in an era of technology known as the “insta-age.” Through social media, consumers have become accustomed to receiving the latest trends immediately after they hit the catwalk. In parallel, younger generations seeking to differentiate themselves from the crowd seek personalized products tailored to their specific tastes and needs. Moreover, ‘fast-fashion’ or mass-produced clothing is losing popularity.
This trend will make it increasingly difficult for companies and brands to create vast quantities of garments months in advance, without knowing how well they will sell. A firm that is responsive to market needs and steps up the pace will succeed in today’s rapidly changing modern economy. Many designers and businesses must embrace cutting-edge technologies to push the limits of manufacturing, production, marketing, and wearability. Among the major tech breakthroughs in fashion, today are artificial intelligence, mobile shopping, 3D printing, and blockchain.
AI is an artificially intelligent system.
Artificial intelligence has been embraced by brands in recent years in order to enhance shoppers’ shopping experiences, analyze data, increase sales, forecast trends, and provide inventory-related advice. Customer experience and personalized product recommendations are being improved with in-store chatbots and touchscreens. On most fashion brands’ websites, you’ll find some type of AI chat technology that’s being used to improve client experience. Through AI technology, products are linked to clients based on their journeys. The most profitable AI applications are trend forecasting and supply chain management. With real-time inventory tracking, companies are able to manage and operate their warehouses more efficiently and save time.
Designers can differentiate themselves and appeal as sustainable options with novel materials in the future of fashion. By producing lab-grown leather without harming animals, startups like Modern Meadow are combating this problem. A number of companies are developing super-strong spider silk, including Bolt Threads and EntoGenetics. Scientists at MIT have developed a technique called ColorFab 3D that uses “photochromic inks” to print 3D objects that change color when exposed to certain wavelengths of UV light. Their first product was a color-programmable ring.
The Internet of Things (IoT)
Objects, or “things,” that are integrated with technology to allow data to be exchanged and connected through the Internet are referred to as the Internet of Things (IoT). In the fashion industry, this is one of the most fascinating and rapidly developing technologies. Fashion evolves every year to meet the needs of the modern world. Using fashion as an expression of yourself is a great way to express yourself. Wearable gadgets and clothing technology are excellent examples of this. As a result, the word comfort has taken on a whole new meaning as we perceive our surroundings, engage with others, and interact with our bodies.
Rapid Data Analysis Enables Rapid Adaptation
Using vast amounts of data, firms can quickly adapt business segments (like the supply chain) using rapid data analysis for quick adaptation. The new software tools on the market can now provide real-time feedback and warnings about flaws or damaged goods to brands and factories. As a result, they can save money, avoid waste, and supply adequate items on time. In addition, it provides real-time detection of potential business dangers, allowing them to maximize client satisfaction.
Commerce on the go
The mobile technology industry is advancing rapidly. Insta-shopping and smart wallets are just a few of the digital tools that make mobile commerce so powerful. Aside from influencing our daily lives, it has also become one of e-commerce’s fastest-growing segments. It is becoming increasingly convenient to shop online using our cell phones. Retail payments are poised to shift to Apple and Android Pay, which are constantly evolving with new technologies like fingerprint and facial recognition. In a study conducted by Big Commerce, two out of three millennials prefer to shop online over in-store.
A fully integrated digital commerce offering is available in customers’ favorite channels in addition to social media (for example, Instagram’s shopping function). As a result, they increase their visibility and have more sales opportunities. Similarly, sustainable fashion apps like Vinted and Depop have displaced traditional second-hand clothing platforms like eBay and Gumtree. Mobile commerce is transforming the fashion business in every way through these field sales sites, which have transformed the online sales sector.
Augmented and virtual reality (VR)
The integration of the physical and online worlds of retail has been one of the most fascinating applications of Virtual Reality. One popular application of VR in the fashion industry is the ability for buyers to try on clothing virtually. Utilizing augmented reality technologies and tailored measurement functionality improves accuracy. Customers are also more likely to buy items they believe have been tried on if they believe they have been tested. Since clients enjoy seeing the goods themselves before purchasing, this type of online shopping experience engages them and keeps them for a longer period of time. Combined with social media sharing, this makes it more attractive to buyers.
Vector editors online
Alternatives to Adobe Illustrator are becoming increasingly popular. They are excellent options if you are new to developing graphics design software. As an alternative, if you don’t have Illustrator or Sketch and all you need to do is edit vector graphics.
Vectr, Boxy SVG Editor, and Repsketch are all online vector editors that can be accessed from any computer. Some online vector editors offer templates developed by graphic or fashion designers. Repsketch offers a wide range of garment templates to choose from. Including design elements like various collars, sleeves, and pockets. This powerful vector editor enables you to quickly generate new clothing designs without having to sketch them from scratch. Online vector editors enable you to download, embed, or simply share a public link to your creations in web-friendly SVG format with the rest of the world.
Since the introduction of 3D printers, many brands, both large and small, have been investigating the possibilities for on-demand production. This opens up new possibilities for customization sustainability and innovation. In 2022, many fashion brands are incorporating 3D elements into their designs, from accessories to whole ensembles.
Even though it takes a long time to produce, it produces less waste and is significantly less labor-intensive than other methods of manufacturing. Indeed, on-demand garment printing lowers fabric waste by approximately 35%. This zero-waste strategy could provide useful insights on how to reorganize factories and align them with a more sustainable social and environmental focus.
Blockchains are excellent tools for improving transparency, traceability, and efficiency in supply chains. Members can exchange information, documents, and data directly and securely through the platform, from carriers and banks to intermediaries and suppliers. Using technologies like track-and-trace and inventory management, clothes apparel, and supply chains can be traced and recorded efficiently.
A blockchain-based digital identity establishes a physical-digital link between products and their digital identities. In the same way that digital currency provides a cryptographic stamp or serial number, Block Blockchaindes a physical identity that is linked to the product’s “digital twin,” according to Forbes magazine. This technology has been employed by Textile Genesis, which maintains records at every stage of production. According to them, this will improve transparency and encourage a more sustainable supply chain.
The fashion industry traditionally follows a seasonal framework. The designers revealed their spring/summer, fall/winter, and pre-fall and pre-spring collections.
Seasonality in fashion is coming to an end?
Designs in fast fashion move quickly from the runway to the retail shelves. Fast fashion conglomerates can create up to 52 micro collections per year. Traditional brands have to keep up with the growing consumer demand by releasing up to 11 collections per year.
Because fast production runs to generate a lot of textile waste, a lot of clothing ends up in landfills, harming both factory workers and the environment. Every year, around 12.8 million tons of clothing are disposed of away in landfills. The garment business contributes up to 10% of worldwide CO2 emissions, 20% of industrial effluent, 24% of insecticides, and 11% of pesticides used.
Increasingly, consumers and fashion firms are turning away from time-consuming and expensive manufacturing processes because of the environmental impact. As a result, more firms are adopting sustainable production, and more consumers prefer conscientious labels over rapid fashion.
Another environmentally friendly habit that is becoming increasingly popular is purchasing old goods from consignment and resale stores. ThredUP, one of the major online thrift businesses, expects that the total secondhand garment market will reach $51 billion by 2023. Clothing site Re-Fashion has devised the appropriate cyclical structure for sustainable fashion. The store sells secondhand designer items at a reasonable price and accepts free donations. The site has cornered an industry that is in high demand by providing both sustainable purchasing and contribution options. Through its online marketplace, it promotes sustainability as well.