The technology that has invaded every part of our lives has made its way into high-end fashion too. So we went ahead and compiled a list of 15 other-worldly, geeky pieces of high end couture that will not fail to get excited yelps, or for that matter jeering boos, even from the most hardcore geeks.
We commence with the CO2 Dress, which deceptively sounds like a dress made of carbon dioxide. Rather than that, the CO2 Dress will earn you some greenie points, since this dress uses built-in soft circuits to monitor CO2 pollution in the air. The carbon dioxide levels will lead the lights on the dress to flicker with the entire dress lighting up if the level of CO2 is too high. If that ever happens, you can rest assured that we won’t be around to see the CO2 dress lighting up. To create this unusual piece of couture, four organizations, namely diffus.dk, Alexandra Institute, The Danish Design School and embroidery company Forster Rohner have gotten together. Though a tad spooky, the CO2 Dress is a great way to tell the world of the increasing CO2 levels.
Enlighted Wedding Dress
Every woman loves to look her best and glitter the brightest on her wedding day. Taking the glitter a tad too seriously, a company called Enlighted has started to manufacture wedding gowns that predictably, glitter with a zillion little lights. While we feel that all those remote controlled, battery powered lights are a bit of an overkill, plenty of brides across the world may feel otherwise. So, they could go ahead and order one of these here.
Wearing anything associated with fur can get PETA up in arms, but they wouldn’t bother to give you more than a passing glance if you happen to pass them with the GlowFur Coat on. The GlowFur Coat is made of faux fur and comes in an array of colors from a sober brown to an outlandish florescent. Like its name suggests, this coat is impregnated with a lighting system in its innards, which will glow in the dark and scream look-at-me. You could get yourself one of these faux fur creations for $975.
Galaxy LED Gown
A smorgasbord of dazzling LEDs and crystals. Yes, that’s how we’d describe the LED Galaxy Dress that CuteCircuit’s designers have put together. The Galaxy Dress has, hold your breath, 24,000 LEDs that light up and will most probably light up everything within three feet of you. The Galaxy Dress is made of silk and manages to house all those flat LEDs and ultra thin circuits. Even with all these circuits, the dress manages to surprisingly remain as flexible as any other large gown. Here’s what Francesca Rosella and Ryan Genz, the designers of the dress have to say
The circuits are extra-thin, flexible and hand embroidered on a layer of silk in a way that gives it stretch so the LED fabric can move like normal fabric with lightness and fluidity
The Intimacy Project
How about a dress that becomes transparent when you bring an illuminated globe close to it? While such a concept would be every man’s fantasy, one man has gone ahead to make the fantasy a reality. Dutch artist Daan Roosegaarde has created the Intimacy Project, which features clothing made of a foil-like material that changes its transparency when stimulated by an external radio device. The designer hopes to achieve a sense of intimate sensuality through this extreme piece of clothing. Well, we shudder to even imagine what the women’s rights activists will have to say about this.
Light Up Dress
Bluetooth technology meets clothing, and this time it isn’t to beam wireless music like we would have preferred. The Bluetooth technology on the Light Up dress will light up a series of little lights that run down one side of the dress from the shoulder to the hip. This will happen every time your phone rings. Phew, how annoying can it really get? What piques us is that the very hot tennis star Maria Sharapova is seen posing in one of these like she doesn’t get enough attention already. Thankfully, this is a one-off dress designed by Georgie Davies, a student at London College of Fashion as a part of a school project exploring the fusion of technology and fashion. Now, it sits inside the display window of London’s upscale department store Liberty and no, it isn’t for sale.
Little girls would love to play fairy and don fairy costumes. Designer Gareth Pugh seems to think that big girls too would love to play fairy and has created this OLED Dress. The dress is created from a special fabric which is coated with a thin, flexible layer of OLED displays. These displays change color when triggered by an electronic signal that is controlled by a micro-controller sewn into the fabric. The bulky OLED Dress, we feel would be out of place everywhere except maybe costume theme parties.
Zegna Solar Ski Jacket
The Zegna Solar Ski Jacket is a good looking yet functional piece of clothing that gets our thumbs-up. Apart from keeping you nice and warm, the Zegna Solar Ski Jacket has solar cells in its jacket to charge your mobile devices. This Microtene jacket is water resistant and is an collaborative effort of Italian clothing manufacturer Ermenegildo Zegna and Interactive Wear, a firm that specializes in smart textile technology. The best part of the Zegna Jacket is that the solar cells can be detached and can be used to produce electricity separately when you aren’t using the jacket. Though the Zegna Ski Jacket sells for a pricey $1,350, it is well worth a buy if you want a make a green statement that proves useful as well.
Day-for-Night Modular Solar Dress
While the Day-for-Night modular solar dress doesn’t look as outlandish as some of the other couture we’ve featured here, it surely looks as well as works great. The length of the Day-for-Night Solar Dress can be altered by varying the number of 448 white circuit boards. Each tile encloses a solar cell, a RGB LED, or a photocell and jumper connectors. A control board and a USB controller in the dress provides power, and links to a computer via RF. All these panels will absorb solar power during the day and then you can use all that solar power to charge your gadgets at night. So, that is the Day-for-Night Modular Solar Dress for you, a terrific mix of looks meet utility.
This is one piece, or two pieces of clothing that that would get full marks as ogle material as well as planet saving kit. The Solar Bikini has 1″ x 4″ photovoltaic film strips sewn together with conductive thread. These solar panels will provide power for the wearer of the bikini to charge an iPod. This makes the already hot piece of beachwear a smoldering piece of clothing. Full marks!
Park Avenue iPod Blazer
Park Avenue makes sharp suits for men and now it has outfitted one of suits with iPod control. Fitted under the lapel, the iPod controls mimic the controls found on your iPod and will thus enable you to control your iPod without actually having to pull your iPod out every time. Now, that is a sharp looking piece of power clothing, isn’t it? The cost of all this gadgetry, is a relatively reasonable $300.
Triumph Solar Swimsuit
Here is proof of the big lingerie manufacturers embracing green technology. The Triumph Solar Swimsuit is a collaborative effort between lingerie manufacturer Triumph and photovoltaic cell manufacturer Conergy. The swimsuit has solar panels impregnated on its front side. These panels understandably will absorb solar energy and connect it into stored electrical energy. This stored electricity can later be used to charge small gadgets. So, your swimsuit now has another purpose apart from attracting envious eyeballs.
Feminist groups are already crying hoarse over the GPS Lingerie and understandably so. The GPS Lingerie has a little GPS unit that will monitor its wearer’s movements and transmit signals to a base GPS receiver situated in a remote location. While Lucia Lorio of Brazil, the lingerie’s designer has designed this piece of beachwear to protect women from getting lost or abducted, the feminist groups feel that this piece of kit is a chastity tool that could be used by men to spy on a woman’s movements. This has given the GPS Lingerie more than it’s share of publicity, both good and bad. Meanwhile, you take a look and decide for yourself.
Hussein Chalayan’s Animatronic Clothing
We have absolutely no clue as to why Hussein Chalayan has gone on to create these animatronic pieces of clothing. Before you start wondering what animatronic is, it is a type of clothing that responds to stimuli, in this case sound to change it’s shape. To be more precise, the animatronic clothing that Hussein Chalayan has designed assumes different forms in response to sound. And the responses are weird to say the least. One garment transforms itself to a hat from a dress leaving the model nude. While we’d like a wool blazer transform to an evening jacket, it appears that we have to wait for quite some time before that materializes.
Power Dressing gets an all new meaning with designer Amanda Parkes creating a dress that will generate power. No, this time around the sun won’t be used to generate the electricity. The human body fabric of Amanda Parkes’ dress is made of a piezoelectric material that will generate power by using the natural gestures of the human body. This electricity will be stored in a centralized battery for use at a later time. This garment could very well be the future of fabrics that we all could be wearing. So take a nice hard look.