Tuesday this week was the last day of London Fashion Week, the annual sartorial circus that sees the capital become a honey pot for a global crowd of fashionistas that extends from US Vogue head Anna Wintour to front row blow up doll Pandemonia. As the bandwagon moves on to the Milan shows, London is left to contemplate what is likely to be big next season, where the most popular trends are going to come from and what the fashion pack is going to embrace the most wholeheartedly. From the SS15 shows just passed it looks like technology is going to be one of the biggest trends in the fashion world in the coming years – in many different ways.
Of course wearable fashion tech was flung firmly into the spotlight with the recent launch of the new Apple Watch (perfectly timed to coincide with the start of the fashion weeks) but this isn’t the only way that technology has begun to work wonders for fashion. In 2010, London was the first of all the fashion weeks to start live streaming catwalk shows and whilst this might sound like a fairly non-earth shattering event to anyone outside the industry, in fact it blew it right open. You see, previously it was only those in possession of a coveted show invitation – which usually meant being either a celeb, working for a big glossy mag, or having a personalrelationship with the designer – who could attend a fashion show, see the trends emerging and report back on them to the rest of the hungry fashionistas of the world.Now, we can all see it for ourselves.
Social media is another tech trend fully embraced by the fashion industry – fashion journalism is now almost completely extinct in the face of the myriad of fashion blogs that have sprung up, some of which have become such viable businesses that the bloggers are celebrities in their own right. Twitter, Instagram and Facebook mean images from shows and FROWs (the front row..) are instantly transmitted around the world, triggering comment, analysis and predictions from those who previously simply wouldn’t have been informed enough to have an opinion. The fashion house Burberry went one step further this season and launched a Twitter tie up during its show where a ‘Buy Now’ button allowed customers to instantly purchase whatever item was the subject of the tweet without users being directed to another page. And it seems that technology is likely to remain firmly on the agenda for the fashion community, with the British Fashion Council announcing tech as akey priority through the launch of the Innovation and Digital Pillar.
Although there are clearly differences between the fashion and legal sectors in many ways the recentbroadening of the legal market and the way fashion has become a much more open book are very similar. If there are any lessons to be learned from the fashion crowd it must surely be that those who embrace and innovate technology to their advantage will be the at the cutting edge while those who don’t will find themselves left behind like last season’s boots.