Fashion + Virtual + Technology

I received an excellent link about virtual technology and the fashion industry from JeanRicard Broek this evening. It’s called Tech and fashion just off the runway, posted by Candace Lombardi, 12/04/07.

One of the links was all about the meeting at the Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA) in Boston this past Tuesday. The event was hosted by Moda e Technologia.There were some big players there including Linden Labs and MVM.

The talk there was about the fashion industries virtually developing worlds that focus on the themes and lifestyles that they try to develop with their fashion collections and brands.

The hope is that infusing fashion into the virtual worlds will pull in shoppers that otherwise would not even think to venture into the virtual worlds. I respectfully suggest that they focus primarely on the tweens that are already addicted to the various proprietary virtual worlds. The only way you will get the masses to shop in a virtual world on a mass market level is through the Web Browser – get busy developers…..Linden Lab? IBM? MetaPlace? MVM? Free the Avatars for all of us!

Boy oh boy do I agree with the quote from Dennis Valle, director of media interaction at Dolce & Gabbana, who said that “the move to digital is a big jump that will require teaching a whole industry a new vocabulary and explanation of context.”

Hey Dennis – the move to digital was 20 years ago – the move now is to 3D virtual reality – I believe that is what you were referring to. The move to virtual is now rapidly converging from all directions and if you think it’s going to be a big job to teach the industry how would you like to try to change the monolithic educational system to respond to today’s fast changing virtual technology advances?

I loved the question that the audience asked of Louise Guay from MVM, they must have delighted her.

The other article in CNET News titled, ” CAD software is the new black
By Candace Lombardi, 12/07/07

Now this is an area (CAD for textiles & apparel) I definitely have expertise in because I have been researching, teaching, retooling and developing coursework in this area for about 20 years now. In fact, the title of my M.F.A. thesis was “CAD Applications for textiles,” (are you ready?) in 1989!

Actually the article was quite through with mentioning the major CAD players except for the BIG exclusion of OptiTex – the top of the line unparalled 3D product development application and of course SymmetryWorks and ClicDesign plug ins for Adobe. Here is a link to my previous post on Optitex: It’s a Reality: Optitex Enables Total Integration 2D>3D>2D Fashion Product Development

Do you believe this?

Lectra and Gerber are very, very big players but their 3D applications are late comers and are behind the application development and upgrading of OptiTex.  Did you see the promotional Gerber 3D virtual images above with the ragged white pixels  around the virtual figures? I don’t even believe that one. They both have loads of other fashion/textile/product development related software though.

I don’t get it?

I must say I downloaded and explored the (Lectra) Kaledo 3D Trend application (pictured above) several months ago and for the love of me I could not figure out why someone would want to do 3D virtual trend presentation in a proprietary application (that they pay $$ for) when they could do exactly the same thing and much more (trend presentation and product development) in Second Life (which is free) and actually present it to your clients in a virtual setting similar to the product lifecycle management solution that the Fashion Research Institute is developing with IBM.

The article concludes with the Lectra Americas President David Rode stating that “he’s very interested to see how fashion executives respond to the idea of designing for avatars and extending their visions into the virtual space.”  Quite frankly, so am I. Good luck David getting the fashion executives to wrap their 2D minds around that virtual vision, you should journal that research project.  You will have your work cut out for you as I am sure some of them are still struggling with the digital transformation that took place 20 years ago. I hear from various industry sources that the need to continually upgrade hardware/software just to keep pace with the rapid advances currently taking place in the industry is not always welcomed or understood…in this country at least.  I think you may have more luck with the product lifecycle solution or the 3D virtual Web Browser that will surely come soon…. FREE THE AVATARS!
Thank you JeanRicard.

  1. December 8, 2007 at 4:31 pm

    Thank you for the thanks. Let me tell your readers why I passed on the links.

    Fashion, Art/Film/Music/Dance, Architecture & Furniture Design are the areas were the commercial aspects of the Real World and the Virtual World have found the most synergy. Secoind Life is driven by people who are artistically expressing themselves and now see great opportunity to enter theses established markets for the first time.

    Other then real estate, design this is were almost all the economic action and social interaction is in SL (not forgetting partying, romance, exploring and sex ~LOL~). The store, mall, open market and trade show have all been copied into SL with few modifications. Though no new business models have been developed as of yet, the creative talent, experimentation and entrepreneurship in SL is just amazing and this is pulling these industries in.

    I am looking for new and better tools, architures, standards for content creation, IP rights management, and data/content sharing to generate new business models and even more opportunity.

    The other area were SL is exploding is education & BtoB commerce, the virtual world is a great place for meetings, classes, presentations, interaction, discussion and networking.

    SL or some form of 3D virtual space has now been identified by most knowledgeable corporations, enterprises and institutions as having tremendous value. SL is not the best place for advertising of services, selling cars, cement mixers or Coca Cola. It excels as a platform for meeting and engaging people in a way impossible except face to face.

    I watch your blog closely since you are right on the edge of changes in both the fashion industry and eduction and am pleased to share my lil tidbits and not so profound insights. You now are at the vortex of both trends. I hope you can get some sleep. ~lol~

  2. December 8, 2007 at 6:03 pm

    I appreciate your feedback and comments jeanricard. From my perspective, companies like Linden Lab, IBM, MetaPlace, MVM and perhaps even Fidelity need to forge a union to first ‘Free the Avatars.”

    Once this is a reality a company like Optitex could submit virtual world content that can be valued strictly for it’s virtual appeal in a world like Second Life or MetaPlace or tried on for exact fit in an application like MVM (via the current flat Web, SL or virtual Web Browser with Metaplace – using the MVM avatar) and could be custom ordered and translated into RL garments by the Optitex system.

    Now that would really be an amazing turnkey virtual production and marketing system of RL items.

  3. August 10, 2012 at 8:14 am

    Hello there

    I’ve read your articles with much interest. I’m wondering if you can help me choose a software for pattern making? I don’t need to do any 3D product development, just the basic steps of digitizing a hard copy pattern, grading it, and having a certain amount of manipulation over it once it’s in my computer.

    Your comments are much appreciated.

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