Shirts that tell washing machines how to clean them and self-buying tights: The future of connected fashion

Your clothes are about to get a whole lot smarter

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Indy Lifestyle Online

Wearable technology is nothing new - activity trackers and smartwatches are now as ubiquitous as trainers and glasses.

But what if it could soon be our clothing itself that has internet connectability?

In the not too distant future, it’s highly likely that our clothes will be almost as smart as our phones. 

Given we’ve survived just fine for millennia with the clothes we have now, you might be wondering what the point of connected clothing would be. 

Well, imagine if when you put a jacket in the washing machine, a chip in the jacket automatically puts the machine on the right laundry setting, making life just that little bit easier.

Another function of scannable chips in clothing could be the ability to find out more information about the product, such as how it was designed, its sustainability and even a playlist made by the brand.

Whilst none of these functions are things we need, the hope is that they’ll enhance our clothing and the experience that goes with wearing it.

And it isn’t just a dream - internet-connected clothes are already being made but are yet to go mainstream. 

One company leading the way is clothing care label manufacturer Avery Dennison, who have teamed up with fashion label Rochambeau and Evrthing to create a bomber jacket with a personalised QR code. 

The code in the chip then gives the wearer a number of perks such as entry to exclusive clubs, special menus at certain restaurants and a ticket to Rochambeau’s next runway show. 

But internet-connected clothing isn’t the only way fashion is combining with technology - programmatic commerce, a concept developed by global ecommerce consultancy Salmon, is set to change the way we buy clothes.

Through smart connected devices in our homes, our shopping needs will be anticipated and taken care of. For example, before you’ve even realised you’ve run out of tights, your favourite online retailer has automatically re-ordered some new ones for you based on your repurchasing patterns and an estimation of the average life cycle of your tights.

So with connected clothing and homes, it may soon be that when it comes to fashion, we barely have to think about anything at all.

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