Technical textiles, intelligent garments, smart fabrics, wearable electronics will play an important role in the future. Clothing incorporating such technologies will not only make a fashion statement, they will also define an unprecedented level of practicality leading to greater well-being and security.
Already there are many prototype garments embodying new technologies, including "Space Technologies", but they are still very much at the prototype stage and little attempt has yet been made to commercialise them. However, the textile and fashion industries are extremely interested in learning about and pursuing new techniques and materials.
The aim of i-WEAR is to draw the attention of not only potential users and the press but potential designers, buyers and manufacturers to innovations in the field of intelligent and technologically advanced clothing and to broaden the consumer's knowledge of topics such as safety, protection, healthcare, and wellness. In the long run, a greater level of acceptance of high tech in clothing will strengthen the competitiveness of Europe's technology-driven industries.
Alongside garments from the Alexandra Fede collection, Wolford, France Telecom and Philips amongst others, ESA's Technology Transfer Programme will be showing various garments incorporating space technologies which have been developed under its auspices by Grado Zero Espace, Verhaert and others. The ESA garments will include a shape memory shirt, McLaren cooling suit, Toy Jacket, Aerogel jacket, Spacebra, Babyguard to protect against cot death, and a UV suit to protect against xeroderma pigmentosum.
The i-Wear Fashion Show in Paris will be organised by Alexandra Fede, stylist for Du Pont de Nemours, Mitsubishi and Wolford. The promotion and publicity for the event will be handled by 2me Bureau. The show itself is expected to consist of a catwalk of static demonstrations of some 30-40 prototype garments with the technologies in each item being described to an audience of some 300-400 people, who will be able to get a good look and feel of the garments and ask questions. It is anticipated that Fashion TV will be present to create a video of the event, to be shown subsequently on FTV.