Good Morning! Can you believe it is the middle of AUGUST already? It is already ¾ into 2016, and I swear it seems like yesterday when it was 30 degrees and freezing here in the Mid West! I hope you have been able to spend your summer doing all of your favorite activities. Maybe it was a long awaited family vacation, reading a good book, sunbathing, or just grabbing a drink with some of your friends…summer is always a time for relaxation and fun! Today we have some super interesting articles that I personally really enjoy. Remember, you’re always more than welcome to join in on the conversation and leave a comment! Let’s get started!
Friday Favorites, Week Ending 8/12
Fashion Tech Startups, Innovating The Fashion Industry
Sometimes the fashion industry seems to get into some sort of rut, where they are just repeating different trends over and over again. In this article, they highlight some different fashion technology startups that aren’t doing anything close to “normal”. They are definitely innovating the fashion industry. They discuss everything from fixing the never ending problem of sizing in the fashion industry to getting rid of those clothes we don’t wear in our closets and making money off of it. This article was something I loved to read because everything here is up and coming! Definitely give it a read if you’re interested in that sort of thing!
Resurgence is in Full Effect
This is one article that made me so happy to read. We all know that textile and apparel manufacturing has had a hard time to stay alive in the United States based upon various reasons. Unfortunately, most of the world thinks of the American textile industry as obsolete. The competition with other countries in manufacturing is very hard. That is no secret. But we have found a time where there is a constant improvement in the slow manufacturing industry.
Fortunately, we have a very bright future ahead, and we’re excited to let the public know. Now you probably have one question…But what exactly has contributed to the recovery of the apparel and textile manufacturing industry?
Well as the article states, “This process of “reshoring” may have been triggered partly by concerns over factory safety and by growing concerns over the safety of chemicals and a lack of traceability. Equally, retailers and brands are being taken to task over environmental sustainability. All of these are easier to monitor and control in US factories than they are in far-off developing countries. At the same time, developments in technology—notably automation and robotics—are enabling US factories to cut their costs while proximity to the market provides producers in the USA with a significant competitive advantage over companies based in distant countries in terms of quick response and market knowledge.”
But, still, we have some things to work on here in the United States. The article reads that “the US apparel industry still supplies less than 3% of the US domestic market for apparel in volume terms. Also, US apparel imports continue to be dominated by low-cost Asian suppliers, reflecting the fact that cost minimisation continues to play a vital role in sourcing decisions.” So what more can we do to compete with the low-cost Asian suppliers? More now than ever, we are trying to figure out that answer. But it is reassuring to read an article like this and see what kind of possibility this industry has in the United States.
Bargain and Consignment Shopping
If you take one look at a fashion magazine they are always talking about the hot new trend and where to buy it now. But, some are realizing there is no need to drive to your nearest store and pick up that outfit. Most of the time, it is already in your closet. Or if not in your closet, you can buy it a whole lot cheaper.
Websites like Poshmark are great examples. The simplicity of the mobile apps shows you a wonderful supply of gently worn clothing, shoes, handbags and jewelry by fashion and luxury brands. Also, individual consignment sellers are loving to display their high fashion closets for sale for a huge discount!
Many shoppers are intrigued by the high quality and low price tag. The items are classified as a luxury so things gently wore usually have years of life left in them. Not only is this a great thing for these shoppers wallets, but also benefits the world! “Buying secondhand goods is a way to consume responsibly. Tradesy CEO Tracy DiNunzio explains they have “a more financially educated consumer who is choosing quality brands” over fast fashion. In fact, she claims, many of their consumers, mainly online fashion shoppers ages 20-50, are checking Tradesy for the resale value of handbags and shoes before making the investment in retail.”
Are you one that loves this trend? Is this really a trend or is it one to stick? Check out these awesome consignment shops online to see what awesome picks are out there.
Smell No More
Hanesbrands, a popular undergarment and activewear brand has come up with a new innovation. They have come up with some new odor control technology that controls the smell coming off your garments. They believe that it could definitely leave a positive impact on the technology and apparel industry as a whole. They call this new technology “Fresh IQ” and they say it “attacks” odor and bacteria on these different garments. It sounds like a perfect addition to any errand run after a sweaty and smelly gym workout!
Plastic Bag Tax
Recently, the UK has enforced a plastic bag levy to reduce waste in all areas of their retail market. They have found it has created a wonderful and positive impact on the charities around the UK. The article states, “Figures from the CAF released recently indicate that the levy raised at least 29 million pounds in total for good causes in its first six months alone.The levy currently sees four pence of the 5p charge go to charity while the remaining 1p goes to the Government Treasury.According to figures released last week by the Department for Environment, Food, and Rural Affairs, since the levy was introduced plastic bag usage across the UK has plummeted by six billion, with the biggest retailers experiencing an 85 percent drop in usage.”
What a crazy impact. So basically what the UK is doing if you haven’t caught on by now, they are including a tax if the consumer wishes to get a bag to carry the items they buy. This tax has significantly benefitted many different charities all around the UK. The article talks about how they are trying to get rid of the plastic bags being used all together. Do you think this is something the United States could take on and be successful? I definitely believe it’s something we could borrow and it would benefit the country not only by an increase in the donations to charities but also help our country lower the amount of waste we have!
Smart and Fashionable Tech Bracelet
With the increase in technology, it is no surprise that that wearables are becoming more common than ever. But so far in the market, it is hard to find one that actually looks appealing with less casual outfits and something that doesn’t look like just a hair tie on your wrist. WiseWear has created an option that definitely combines fashion and technology. Who is the brain behind this invention? Well, Gerald Wilmink, the founder and chief executive officer of WiseWear. He gave an interview with Women’s Wear Daily and discussed how this new bracelet will be available at Sak’s starting early Fall.
“WiseWear is a connected bracelet with features including activity tracking, mobile notifications and distress messaging. Unlike clunky, plastic wristables, WiseWear emphasizes style, with brass bangles plated in precious metals like 18-karat gold and palladium. The company offers a variety of form factors, from the Kingston (a clean and simple bangle) to the Calder (a bold design available in rose gold). Styles are interchangeable since the device is made of two jewelry parts: a bottom, called the brains, which houses the hardware, and a top, called the beauty, which allows wearers to express personal style.”
This new addition to Sak’s line is the first of its kind. It is not only just a smart wearable but now it is smart jewelry. It is a beautiful piece that could compliment any outfit! Although there are some jewelry additions to other wearables, one thing that differentiates itself is the safety feature. If the wearer is feeling unsafe at any time, they can tap the bottom of the piece and it will send a GPS location to the wearer’s emergency contact. This way someone will always know where you are and can act as a safety blanket while being alone. As described you can probably tell they are definitely targeting the college market for those walking alone and want to be safe by just a tap. So simple, so elegant and so innovative. I know this won’t be the last time we hear about WiseWear!
Thanks for joining us,
Technical Textile Solutions