Augmented Reality and Fashion: A High-Tech and Stylish Partnership

When people use electronic devices to view their surroundings with images or text layered on top, they’re experiencing augmented reality (AR). A famous example of AR is the 2016 mobile game Pokémon Go, which involved cute digital characters superimposed on scenery from the real world.

AR, which has many practical applications, could revolutionize the fashion industry. It gives consumers new ways of building their wardrobes, and it may change how clothes are designed.

AR-Enhanced Shopping Experiences

AR has been aiding consumers for several years. For example, in 2011, a British Hugo Boss store installed a large screen on which customers could place virtual clothes on virtual models. During the early 2010s, certain programs let computer users see images of themselves in different outfits. Those pictures may have been somewhat primitive, but they were often effective visualization tools.

Advanced applications that perform similar functions are starting to appear. Gap, for instance, has worked with the technology company Avametric as well as Google to develop an app that lets consumers see what they’d look like in various attire.

The Gap app is called DressingRoom, and right now, it’s only available on certain Google phones. Perhaps it will show up on other platforms at some point, though. In essence, it records a person’s measurements and then creates a mannequin avatar that represents him or her. Through a mobile device, a customer can see the digital mannequin in different outfits and judge which clothes look the best. People can also use this app to order one or more of those items.

In addition, the high-tech companies Bold Metrics and Morph 3D have collaborated to create an app that, like DressingRoom, lets customers view avatars in different ensembles. Those avatars can sit, stand and move around in lifelike ways. Through this app, people can consider dozens of outfits in just a few minutes.

In some cases, AR is just for fun. Exhibit A comes from the company Drawsta, which sells T-shirts and apps in tandem. When someone uses the app to view the shirt through an iPhone, an imaginative animated scene springs to life. The animation changes each week, too.

AR and the Fashion Industry

These days, fashion professionals are getting acquainted with AR just as many shoppers are. For example, AR really made a splash during the 2017 New York City Fashion Week. The technology firm Superbright teamed up with xAd, a company that provides location-based services, to stage a brief show with five real-life models.

Attendees downloaded a special app and viewed the proceedings through camera-equipped gadgets. They could see three-dimensional graphics and read facts about the clothing and the models. As the women moved around, those visual elements moved with them.

It’s difficult to tell how AR will influence the evolution of fashion, but it’s likely to lead to daring styles. Assisted by apps, designers will be free to experiment with the wildest styles they can imagine. They’ll be able to see what all kinds of fabrics, colors, cuts and patterns will look like before they begin cutting and sewing. AR can support and enhance their most audacious ideas, and some of those fanciful notions are sure to become major trends.

One thing is true for both consumers and fashion pros: AR is far more than an amusing novelty. It could be a key to unleashing the full creative potential of many designers. Just as important, it could boost global retail sales by encouraging people to get creative with the clothes they buy and the looks they try.

The Dwimmer team is working on an augmented reality experience we can’t wait to unveil. Stay tuned for a personalized, cinematic world of style!

Proud to be Slow

Slow fashion is a clothing revolution that marries a concern for people and the planet with high-quality products. Gradually but surely, awareness of this movement is growing, and the number of slow fashion options is increasing as well.

Treating Workers with Respect and the Environment with Care

The phrase “slow fashion” seems to have originated in 2007, when Kate Fletcher, a leader in environmentally friendly design, used it in a piece she wrote for The Ecologist.

When people purchase clothes from slow fashion brands, they can learn who made them, where they were made and how they were made. Thus, buyers can be certain that the individuals who created them weren’t underage, exploited or laboring in sweatshops. Instead, they worked in safe environments and were fairly compensated.

In recent years, the vast majority of the clothes in American stores have come from abroad. In many cases, the retailers that sell them don’t know where they were produced or what the working conditions were like.

Moreover, facilities that make slow fashion items don’t pollute the environment. The fabrics are organic and sometimes recycled, and their fibers are grown on farms that treat animals humanely. Those materials might be produced locally or they might be created overseas by weavers who rely on centuries-old techniques.

Slow fashion generates little to no wasted fabric. By contrast, other types of clothes manufacturing centers can throw away as much as 30 percent of the material they purchase.

On top of that, some slow fashion brands routinely set aside a portion of their proceeds for charitable donations.

The Slow Fashion Attraction

At this time, relatively few consumers are committed to this movement; many aren’t even aware of its existence. However, those who do seek out these products tend to be passionate, and the number of slow fashion labels is getting bigger.

Many slow fashion fans feel the quality of these clothes is superior to that of mass-produced items. Generally speaking, they’re highly attractive and comfortable. Unlike so many articles of clothing that are made rapidly, these items don’t tear easily, and their buttons and zippers are rugged.

Indeed, each step of the slow fashion manufacturing process is careful and deliberate, geared toward producing the finest, most durable products possible. The people who make these clothes are usually devoted to their craft and devoted to excellence.

A slow fashion item is also unique. There aren’t thousands more machine-made pieces exactly like it in shops and closets all over the world. When people wear such articles of clothing, they may feel a sense of pride knowing that their attire is theirs alone.

Of course, a slow fashion company can generate far fewer goods than a mass production company. However, the average American buys many more clothes today than she or he did during the 20th century, and a smaller supply of clothing could be a positive societal development. It could save people plenty of money over the long haul, and it could result in much less landfill garbage.

As more people become aware of human rights violations and other abuses within the garment industry, the interest in slow fashion will likely keep expanding. Maybe one day, slow fashion clothes will be common in retail stores everywhere. Consequently, fair trade, outstanding quality and sustainability will be the hallmarks of clothing everywhere.

Dwimmer is proud to be a slow fashion brand. We are a family team and each of our products is handcrafted with great care and attention in California. Our packaging is all recyclable and our neckties are built to last a lifetime.

Non-Binary Fashion: Then and Now

Although it is far from a new concept, non-binary fashion is certainly more mainstream these days. The evolution of this fashion trend has come a long way, leading from women being overly feminine and wearing long skirts and dresses down to their ankles to walking down the runway in suits and ties. In essence, both men and women now have the choice to wear whatever tickles their fancy.

In the Beginning, There Were Pants

While women throughout history have put on men’s clothing in defiance of what was considered proper for the time, non-binary fashion truly got its start in the 1910s. Coco Chanel kicked things off by incorporating fabrics traditionally used in masculine clothes in designs intended for women. The most notable of these styles were pants. The timing of Chanel’s clothing launches were just right, as the suffrage movement had just started to gain popularity..

Non-binary fashion stayed popular throughout the ’20s and ’30s, especially when movie stars such as Katharine Hepburn embraced non-gendered clothing. These female celebrities mixed and matched clothing at their own whims, with top hats, suits, and ties among the many outfits that made their way onto the silver screen.

A Shift From the ’40s and ’50s

The 1940s and 1950s saw a move away from non-binary fashion, with women returning to their traditional gender roles in the wake of World War II. However, the 1960s brought a resurgence of non-gendered fashion that continued into the ’70s. The free love era also adhered to the concept of freely chosen fashion.

Yves Saint Laurent had a particularly strong influence during this time frame thanks to the widespread release of the first tuxedo targeted towards women. Many musicians also played a part in promoting non-binary fashion, from Mick Jagger to David Bowie. This trend didn’t hold particularly strong in the ’80s outside of a few prominent celebrities.

The ’90s and Androgyny

By the 1990s, androgyny was back in and ultimately became one of the fashion trends of the decade. The grunge movement played a part here, as did advances in technology. With the internet connecting widespread communities from the late ’90s, more people felt comfortable with experimenting with fashion. They also had more sources to obtain non-gendered clothing thanks to the advent of e-commerce websites.

2000 and Beyond

Non-binary fashion is highly trendy today, especially when it comes to women wearing pieces that are traditionally menswear. Suits, tuxedos, and ties are all items commonly found in many women’s wardrobes today, along with a plethora of other traditionally masculine clothing pieces. On the flip side, you see many men embracing more feminine clothing as well. Everything from romphims (rompers) with bright patterns to dresses and skirts are all becoming a more common part of many men’s wardrobes.

Acceptance for this type of fashion is likely to keep growing in the upcoming decades. Specialty retailers are putting a lot of attention on making non-binary fashion approachable for women, with many accessories offering the chance to test the waters if they’re interested in taking baby steps. Adding a tie (!) or putting on a pair of combat boots might seem like a tiny fashion change, but think about what these steps meant to women at the beginning of the 1900s. Society and the fashion industry have come a long way since then, and this is made abundantly clear with one look at the clothing racks of today.

Tie One On with Julian

Julian proudly wears the Aleister Tie at historical bohemian hangout Zorthian Ranch in Los Angeles. He works as an actor and model, including his role in Dwimmer’s 2015 fashion film, ‘Tie Dreams’

Watch ‘Tie Dreams’

The year we Kidnapped Cupid

 

by Laurel Tincher

Love triangle, three wheeling, ménage à trois; not the usual topics of conversation preceding the romantic pressure cooker of Valentine’s Day. This year, the Dwimmer team set out to poke Cupid with his own arrow, and the result may be the start of something amazing.

I often think of my boyfriend as the real life Jack Skellington. He has an undying (haha) curiosity and playful urge to question mainstream traditions. His social charm, eye for detail, and thorough mastery of putting on a good production (not to mention his love of Halloween) have made him into a king of the Los Angeles underground events world.

So, when I heard he wanted to put a twist on Valentine’s Day this year, I was eager to hear what sort of mischief he had up his sleeve.

“Imagine a Valentine’s dinner party,” he told me, “where guests sit in groups of three.”

Simple, yet subtly bold. “Triangle,” (as we would later name it) a Valentines dinner date where three is greater.

Immediately the responses we would get began popping into my head. “But, I want to have a romantic night with only my boyfriend for Valentine’s Day,” or “I can’t even find one date, much less two!” Or maybe, “Wait, so is this a swingers party?”

Jack Skellington had found the door to Valentine’s Town.

5 pm, February 14th, the doors of our stunning hilltop venue opened just as the descending sun glowed a golden fuchsia, and heralded the coming night. Eighteen handmade triangle tables awaited our excited trios. As the triads arrived, they were treated to cocktails of champagne, Noyaux and Kina L’Aéro d’Or. The appetizer course consisted of fresh cut vegetables, edible flowers, complex dips, nuts and garnishes all enshrined in a carved wooden temple in the entry. Accompanying the ambrosial appetizers, songstress Aryiel Hartman’s lyrical voice danced around the trios in our own Garden of Eden. Sultry red light above the grand piano gave the mood an added appeal.

Acclaimed Chef Dave Schlosser used his unique culinary creativity to craft the four-course sensuous journey of the dinner. He brought an element of surprise and mystery to complement the unusual parties of three. Waiters served the second course directly on the tables. Some guests grimaced, others laughed and applauded. After the second course was served, each male guest received a poem to recite to his table, and the women were given hair and jewelry ornaments. To accompany the following courses, an improv troupe loosened up the crowd with threesome humor.

By the end of the meal guests had moved tables around, switched seats, and brought the spirit of the event to life. After an extravagant mascarpone cream dessert, late night dancing and delights ensued.A photo booth by photographer Stephen Paynie captured the dynamics of the triads. As guests wandered through the garden, they discovered cozy triangular lounges under the moonlight, and the aptly named          ‘ménage à trois’mirrored Infinity Box by artist Matt Elson.

Just as we hoped, each trio brought a unique story. Three single girlfriends, a married couple and their divorced friend, a man with two beautiful women he’d never met, polyamorous trios, three straight guys, parents with their daughter, the list goes on. Providing a wide range of relationships and histories, the triangle arrangement proved far more fun than filling a room full of couples.

Thanks to the positive feedback and overall success of the magical evening, we’ve decided to turn Triangle into a recurring event. The exact format and venue will change, but we’ll always seat three to a table!

Want an invite to the next Triangle Party? Sign up here

More photos from the event can be seen here

One Night World’s Tour

Excitement is brewing as we transform the DTLA Syrup Loft for our benefit launch event on June 14th. We are planning a spectacular evening of performances, including a singing siren who might just hand you a message in a bottle, fire flow art on the rooftop, home brewed Dwimmer beer, and a whimsical fantasy world full of surprises.

Entry

Guests will enjoy the sights, sounds, tastes and feel of cities Earthly and Elsewhere at the One Night Only Worlds Tour. From Atlantis to Metropolis, snow to sand, dusk til dawn.

Hope to see all the Los Angelesians next weekend!

Please RSVP at

https://www.facebook.com/events/249989291853423/