TECH IS MAKING "NOISE" IN FASHION
BY YARINA YAO
Paris Fashion Week is famous for elegant and chic designs, but 2016 is a different year. Technology is quickly merging with the fashion world, Paris was affected, too. The Japanese fashion house Anrealage presented the Fall 2016 ready-to-wear collection “Noise”, a high-tech fashion show at the Paris Fashion Week. We have to admit that the age of technology is officially coming now.
The designer of Anrealage, Kunihiko Morinaga, made the innovation of tech fashion isn’t just a component of design, but a part of it. He teamed up with the computer programmer and artist Toru urakawa to create a series of black-and-grey fabric patterns imitating the visual static from analog TVs, along with the accompanying sounds.
Instead of a digital screen, models were viewed through a large four panels plastic box. When models approached the box, the patterns sometimes flickered and changed from grids or horizontal stripes to floral looks. At the same time a kind of sound came out while the patterns were changing, sounds like white noise. The new technique is called visual cryptography. The brand's press release explained. “At first glance, the fabric pattern looks like a snow noise, but several pieces of information are coded in the fabric, just like cryptography by a computer program. When seen through a transparent filter, the information are 'decoded,' [and] new prints appear. Thanks to an advanced digital technology, you catch information from the noise combining layers of fabrics. Now you will see binary patterns such as hound tooth check, checkerboard, and horizontal stripes."
Back to the design of clothes, an oversized highly-sculptural silhouette is the main course. Wrap coats with extra-bulky shoulders looked stronger than ever , also pencil skirts and fitted blazers with slanted hems. The final looks of the show had their own viewing screens, which stitched together see-through PVC panels showed as the armor, or even aprons from different angles. The millinery-style helmets that extended over the models' eyes and the ankle boots they wore were made with the same tech fabric as the garments spoke to Morinaga’s forward-looking vision in the most literal sense.
Although the collection seems edgy and advanced with coding technique, even over the traditional fashion concept, some of the critiques from the industry said the whole show was just a gimmick. The reason is they cannot imagine how Morinaga’s designs would translate to everyday wear. Wearability is still one of the important points to be considered as a good design in the fashion world now. It is never an easy job to create something new, as well as acceptable for a designer, but this is also why fashion design is still an exciting job to do.