Couturier Hussein Chalayan just brought high technology to Paris Fashion Week once again, thanks to the utilitarian, slightly athleisure-inspired Chalayan spring/summer 2017 collection that took experiments extremely seriously. As revealed by Forbes, Cypriot-British Hussein Chalayan joined forces with Intel for this runway show, because, as he often reminds us, “only with technology can you create new things in fashion. Everything else has been done.”
This time around, he expressed his utterly passionate love for technology with visual projections of the stress levels the models experienced during the runway show, with the data being showcased on a wall put beside them.
Matrix-inspired glasses, provided by Intel too, received biometric data from three sensors – “one with capacitive electroencephalogram (EEG) electrodes to monitor brainwave activity, one to capture and measure heart rate variability, and the other a microphone to pick up on breathing rates,” as Forbes reveals. Belts cinched at the waists of course served for a similar purpose too, as they got connected with the glasses and the data was acquired via Bluetooth.
“I have been working with wearable technology for many years. Throughout this time, it has been very important for me to work on ideas, which will be as close as possible to a real product while also challenging myself at the same time. Intel’s years of experience, out of the box mentality, commitment to innovation, and level of perfection has made this project one of the most valuable and exciting collaborations for me in recent years,” declared Chalayan.
The idea behind such a complicated project was bringing awareness on the stress levels one may experience at work, and on how correctly breathing techniques can improve the lives of those who suffer from high levels of stress. With just one show, Hussein Chalayan managed to remind us of how influential fashion can be, both for what concerns the environment and our society’s problematic issues.
As for the Chalayan spring/summer 2017 collection, it was extremely intriguing both fashion and technologically wise. With deconstructivism and abstract lines dominating the scene, the collection slowly prepared us for its literal explosion, as the lineup’s figures, from being slightly oversized, quickly became exaggeratedly voluminous.
Along with delicate touches of Oriental fashion, the Chalayan spring/summer 2017 collection passed from deconstructed jackets and skimpy garments to extremely billowy bomber jackets, t-shirt dresses and even jumpers. The last part of the collection is, in fact, purely linked to haute couture, as the proposals unveiled might not be regarded as conventionally wearable.
As for the first and second parts of the lineup, the visionary designer focused on heavily structured shoulders, utilitarian trousers and kimono-inspired dresses, the latter of which got often refined with symmetrically layered embellishments. Most of these looks featured a belt cinched at the waist, which is apparently this Paris Fashion Week’s most recurring pattern.
When it comes to the collection’s color palette, Chalayan mostly focused on blues and reds, with only the slightest hints of white and beige interrupting the lineup.
Never boring, the Chalayan spring/summer 2017 collection will surely become one of the most talked-about lineups from this exciting Paris Fashion Week, hopefully letting more designers think about high tech/high fashion collaborations from now on.
Photos courtesy of Vogue