Effects of New Technologies, Social Changes & Economic Trends on Fashion

This article has been written by keeping in mind the effects of the tumultuous economic downturn, social changes & technological advances on the fashion. It will scan how periods of austerity have impacted on the fashion industry from a historical perspective; analyze the situation on these sectors nowadays, particularly in relation to fashion. It will also examine the effects of new technologies, social & economic trends on fashion.

Fashion has always been greatly influenced by social standings and accessibility to money. In the 30s, there was a shift to purchasing more inexpensive items for the common people while if you could still afford it you would buy your clothing from abroad. During this time a lot of American designers emerged and with the help of movie stars helped to set trends without having to spend the money. Zippers were less expensive than buttons so they became very popular. As the effects of cinema became more evident, the hemlines altered from mid-calf during day time to full length in the evening. Mens fashions were more relaxed and the v neck sweater and wider pants replaced the 3 piece suit. A hat for a man was a social standing and was a sign of a well-dressed male.

Technology had many advances during the 20th century as well. This included the first glimpses of the TV set, as well as medical improvements.

Technology has proved to be a great drive in the vicissitudes and trends in fashion. Silk was produced years ago which helped in the new dress styles for evening wear that became very popular with time. Cotton increasingly got more popular and was manufactured more because of the great demand for an easy to care for fabric. Gradually people overcame the obstacles of the depression and were still able to see the positives and relay that into their fashion choices. If one looks good one feels good. During austerity period, when the money was scarce, one was able to get cheap fabrics and more women started sewing more themselves to save money as well which enabled them to set trends in their own social circles that were to stay around for decades.

The behavioral content of the core assumptions is too simplified. Who can reasonably deny that individual preferences to some extent depend directly or indirectly on what other individuals around are doing? People do care actually about what others think or say. Let us consider, as the simplest example, fashion, which has obvious implications in many economic sectors, from clothing to leisure and finance.

An antiquity of austerity in fashion

Throughout the Twentieth century the world has endured various periods of economic austerity triggered as a result of war, political upheavals, and market uncertainties. World War One, the Second World War, the Wall Street Crash, the Oil Crisis, Black Monday etc. have all had a negative impact on the lives of millions of people in their respective societies.

There was a move during the 2nd world war to train women in mending classes, so they could use unwanted cloth for making new clothes and learn how to extend the life of their existing clothes by mending.

New Media: A new platform for fashion industry

Social media has opened doors to new and emerging designers with small budgets to push their creativity and contribute to the fashion world by actively staying plugged-in. Designers and brands now market themselves directly to clients through the social media and gradually build brand loyalty because of the user-friendly and accessible nature of social media, write Mahesh Shaw and Mehak Mittal.

New Media is a catch term of the 21st Century. Very broadly, new media is something related to the internet and the interplay among technology, images, and sound. It is about making things digital, and has characteristics of being manipulated, networkable, dense, compressible and interactive. The various forms of new media are internet, websites, computer multimedia, computer games, CD-ROMS and DVDs. The population of internet users is increasing at a very fast rate. According to a nationally representative survey by the Pew Research Centre’s Internet and American Life Project, some 70 per cent of American adults aged 18 and older have speed-broadband connection at home as of May 2013. India has the 3rd largest internet user population after China and the US as per the report NASDOC: SCOR, 2013.

The internet is one of the forms of new media which we use extensively. We say humans are social animals. We now say humans are digital animals. We tweet, re-tweet, share, post, upload, comment, like, follow and update 24/7. For us, being social means going digital in the world of Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, YouTube, Tumblr and LinkedIn which are the most commonly used social media networks. Not only is our social life getting digitalised, our entire lifestyle is also getting progressively influenced by the internet. People chat, have online discussions and forums on micro-blogging sites, read books, magazines, and newspapers on the web, shop online, email, and surf various search engines for anything and everything they want to know either on their phones or tablets. Social media is the most popular form of new media used for virtual communication, which allows us to stay connected to all of friends, colleagues, and acquaintances with the click of a button.

Social media and fashion

The fashion industry uses social media as a promising platform to connect with consumers directly. Social media is used by brands of all categories. It has also played a major role in helping the fashion industry reach out to a much wider customer base with lesser costs and more presence in the digital world. All fashion brands and designers have a Facebook page, and a Twitter and an Instagram accounts. Brands have also started previewing their collections exclusively on Pinterest.

To drive growth, to be more exclusive, and to augment the user’s online brand experience, luxury brands Louis Vuitton, Dolce & Gabbana, and Burberry have launched their own social networks. Chanel along with its social networking site has also launched an application with Apple where it allows users to catch up on the latest news, watch exclusive ready-to-wear shows, browse through looks, and also locate stores nearby. DKNY used Instagram to interact one-to-one with fans.

Burberry used Snapchat to reveal its spring/summer 2016 collections a full day before it hits the catwalk. Tommy Hilfiger posts 360 degree videos to Twitter.

Aesthetic Designing In Tricot Warp Knitted Fabrics

For any manufacturer product innovation, modification and diversification are essential to keep pace with the developing competition in the markets whether it is national or international. The innovation, the modification or diversification can lead to changes in dimensions or physical and chemical characteristics, or in structure and texture. In this work tricot warp knitted fabrics were used for innovative modification which can be used in varieties of applications. Although warp knits already finds applications in certain apparel, industrial, medical and in Geo textiles.

The objective of this work is to develop the warp knitted garments with a specific focus on aesthetic innovation making it suitable for selected apparel end uses. Using tricot warp knitted fabrics garments were developed for sports and casual wears segments suitable for men and women. Using the principles and elements of designing the aesthetic modifications has been incorporated on tricot fabrics. Aesthetically modified fabrics were tested for their suitableness to their intended apparel end uses. Printing, embroidery and hand works like bead, stone, mirror and shell works were the surface modifications used for the aesthetic innovation of the garments.

Demure to Deviant : Ladylike Fashion in the Twentieth Century

There are many meanings and uses of the term “ladylike”. Ladylike as a concept can be defined through the language of fashion but it can also be used as a moral or religious standard. Ladylike is a contextual idea. Within the fields of fashion studies and the commercial industry of fashion “ladylike” has varied meanings depending on the context in which it is visually presented. Within the fashion industry itself, the concept of ladylike can be presented in a somewhat straightforward “modernized traditional way” as in the “new classic” available at the US based retailer Talbots or deconstructed as a concept and presented in a self referential way such as French couture house of Dior had shown on the runway and in print advertisements throughout the tenure of creative director John Galliano. Additionally, defining ladylike in terms of fashion can be problematic as its visual signifiers change rapidly over time. Rules of etiquette and appearance relax and bend and sometimes come full circle when they are concerned with sartorial acceptability within a given group or society.

According to Vogues Book of Etiquette, even though decorum, which in the above quotation can be presumed to mean “rules of fashion”, may have relaxed from the early decades of the twentieth century, but at the time of publication, deviating from the norm when dressing was still considered offensive, indiscriminate and exhibitionistic.

And Fashion said: Let there be light

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For over a hundred years, Forster Rohner AG has stood for high-quality embroidery. They produce embroideries for elite fashion houses, and range from ready-to-wear to haute couture. With their new innovation of wearable technology by implementing light into textiles, they are going to conquer new markets, reports Regina Henkel.

When Conrad Forster-Willi founded his embroidery company in 1904 under the name of Forster Willi & Co; embroidery was Switzerland’s most important exports market. Although this segment of the Swiss textiles industry has since undergone major transformations, the fascination for this unusually versatile product still remains, besides the invaluable know-how that has been handed down from one generation of employees to the next. The idea to implement light in fabrics is a result of both.

With the integration of active bright light in textiles, Forster Rohner expanded fashion design to a new dimension, and managed to create the world’s first true hybrid of textile and technology. The special feature: the Forster Rohner fabrics retain their textile properties even after integration of a technical application. In other words: “It was important that the fabric remains a fabric, and also behaves the same way as before, including washability,” explains Jan Zimmermann of Forster Rohner. “Even though it’s a technical product”, he adds, “everyone expects full washability.”

For further development, in 2009 Forster Rohner established a separate department for innovation in the field of technical textiles. It is led by Jan Zimmermann, who is an expert in interdisciplinary sciences, not in textiles. For three years, the company from St Gallen has sought a solution – how to integrate LEDs in textile surfaces, without having to give up the textile characteristics of them.

The idea of embroidering electrical circuits with electrically conductive yarns was feasible. In these circuits, LEDs were incorporated in the form of sequins, which are decorative even when switched off. Also, the machinery had to be converted and new machines developed, for example for the application of the LEDs. From lace to robust wovens or leather, nearly every fabric can be embroidered and illuminated. And everything can be washed several times to

Looking fashionable can also be affordable

Project street style: You dont have to be rich to look fashionable

(Views expressed in this article are the personal opinion of the author.)

You don’t have to be rich to look good or fashionable. Globalization has impacted street fashion as well and there are more ways than one to get on the fashion bandwagon.

Everybody knows that peplum is here to stay. Blair Waldorf wouldn’t have been caught dead in something that didn’t set a trend immediately. But little did the main character of Gossip Girl know that her wardrobe would influence Sonam Kapoor’s wardrobe in Aisha in 2010. In New Delhi, the red peplum dress Kapoor wore in the film caught Tinky Ningombam’s fancy – the 27-year-old public relations manager marched to her local tailor and had the outfit stitched. Frugal finances don’t always need to come in the way of fashion.

Apart from the price of the dress at a high-street brand, it is important to get the right fit,” says Ningombam who prefers to shop on the street, instead of hitting the malls. A walk through Delhi’s Janpath or Sarojini Nagar market or Colaba Causeway in Mumbai is all one needs in order to get a pulse on an eclectic, fresh,

not-so-original but seamlessly international phenomenon called street fashion.

Apart from popular cinema, magazines and blogs are emerging as an important medium that seek to guide fashion lovers of all backgrounds and budgets. “People are sharing ideas on social networking portals and blogs,” says Aaditya Walia, senior fashion stylist, Vogue India. But the numbers are small. Less than 30% people in India follow latest trends, points out Mumbai-based fashion blogger Gia Kashyap. She feels that Indians are far behind the global benchmark of international street fashion compared to the Americans, European and Japanese counterparts. “In India, fashion is very subjective. You may find a girl wearing only western clothing in Mumbai, another girl in Jaipur may wear block print cotton kurtas. Both stylish, but different,” says Kashyap.

Fashion trends from 2012 that are here to stay

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Fashion is full of fleeting trends and new fads, and adapting to them to look stylish throughout the year. And every year there are clothes that one stocks up according to what is ‘in’ that season, and tosses out what’s not. But then again there are some styles and trends that stay on, and leave fashionistas wanting to embrace them a little more. 2012 did pass on some of these fashionable trends to explore the options this year too.

2012 saw a splash of bold and bright colors, neon pinks, fluorescent green, electric blues, and gave rise to the color blocking trend. Full-on suits became very popular in mono-colors and prints. It was also the year when it was raining all leather on the fashion scene, from leather leggings to dresses. Another super comfy fad was of pajama styled pants, printed pants, oxblood colored dresses, peplums, and, baroque patterns that were found flaunting by people everywhere.

There have been a few styles that have survived the test of time, and surpassed the latest fashion additions from 2013, and yet remained in vogue. Peplums were a huge hit then, and are still winning hearts of the fashion conscious this season too. Peplum dresses, tops, skirts, jackets, and tunics were seen on runways, red carpets, and even more in stores. The reason this trend has managed to stay this long is because it looks great on skinny, curvy, petite, and all kinds of figures. Peplum tops are easier to carry and sport, than peplum bottoms like skirts, pants, and shorts. This year designers like Alexander McQueen and Balenciaga showcased collections with peplums and they are definitely a la mode this year too.

The eye-catching colorful blazers have also been embraced with a lot of affinity. Pop colored blazers made their mark in 2012, and still remain a happening trend this year. They can be paired with dresses, shorts, and skirts, to stand out and look chic. These multi-purpose blazers have managed to find a permanent place in wardrobes of the fashion forward, and are available in all hues at affordable prices. If one plans to invest in this statement piece, then bright pinks, cobalt blue, and emerald green are the most sought after colors this season.