Amanda Cosco on Fashion, Tech and Putting the Two Together at stylefestph
Here’s what you missed at stylefestph’s first ever styletalks
A few years back, fashion and technology would quickly be written off as completely different industries, perhaps even opposites. One is focused on aesthetics––colors and textures and how one piece could be a visual match to another––while the other is devoted to function and innovation.
But, really? The gap between fashion and tech isn’t all that large, despite how seemingly stark the differences might be. We learned this from Amanda Cosco, a semi-geek, super chic fashion futurist––essentially a fortune teller in her own right. As the founder of Electric Runway, Cosco studies fashion, innovation and curates, consults and creates where the two intersect.
With years’ worth of experience, there’s no doub this gal knows her stuff. Up ahead, we break down three of the most valuable lessons we picked up from her styletalks session at stylefestph.
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Everyone is the media now.
Picture fashion week in New York back in the 1940s, then picture fashion week now. The constants: models parading down the runway, clothes on their bodies, the watchful eyes of those present. The modern development: the phones in hand.
“Now, a person takes an image to be shared around the world before a model is even done with her circuit on the runway,” says Amanda––and it’s true. We see it first-hand season in and season out at fashion events. There are more iPhones than we can count pointed towards the stage. Fashion is closer within reach now. A smartphone-equipped newbie is every bit as worthy of press status as a seasoned editor, as long as their stories make it online quick enough.
We’re asking the wrong question.
There’s a stress-reducing headband, a therapy sweater, a dress that emits smoke fumes to ward off those lingering too near. At this rate, it won’t be long until the mom jeans and denim jackets in our closets start doubling as music players or kitchen appliances. With #FashionTech folding into each other’s territories so often, perhaps it’s time we stop wondering “What do my clothes look like?” and instead ask, “What do they do?”
Sustainability? That’s technology, too.
Trivia time: fashion accounts for 8% of the world’s total pollution. It’s a little scary knowing that retail giants overproduce by the millions and end up with heaps of clothes that will eventually find their way back to the world as garbage.
But hey, it’s not all bad; along with a bad statistic comes a plus side. More and more people are committing to dressing sustainably, and biotechnology proves that it really is possible. Case in point: biofabricated non-animal leather and Reebok’s plant-based athletic shoe exist.
Despite the abundance of unimaginable products already in existence, Amanda exclaims, “We are only in the very early days of #FashionTech.” If this is what the beginning looks like, we’re excited for whatever comes next.
Art. Alexandra Lara