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InsideFMM | August 2, 2015

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What I Learned At Fashion Camp LA, Part II

Fashion Camp LA brought together fashion and technology insiders and knowledge seekers to Santa Monica’s Coloft on June 13, 2010 with speakers Philip Warbasse (CEO, Warbasse Design), Matt Szymczyk (CEO, Zugara), Syuzi Pakchyan (Author, Designer, Writer of Fashioning Technology), Lisa Borodkin (Attorney, Blogger, Writer at, Christina Gagnier (Attorney), Darryl Jung (CEO, Clashe), Crosby Noricks (PR professional, Writer of PR Couture) and FMM’s own Macala Wright Lee.

Go to What I Learned  At Fashion Camp LA, Part I to read about the first four things I learned at Fashion Camp LA, gleaned from Philip Warbasse’s presentation on QR codes and Matt Szymczyk’s presentation on augmented reality.

#5: Brands need to address both the global and local.

@TheMichaelShane: “Brands are negotiating the balance between global messaging with the value of localized, highly targeted content.”

Crosby Noricks: PR in Fashion by Influenza OnlineAccording to PR and marketing expert Crosby Noricks (the woman behind PR Couture), brands that aspire for global recognition — or who are already globally known — should address specific concerns, issues and aesthetics of their localities.  Global popularity doesn’t just mean projecting a homogenized image of what fashion should be; rather, global recognition is about being able to be flexible and open minded, yet having a strong central core.

Not all people are the same, and brands need to fluidly address the multicultural, diverse and distinct groups of people who like their brand in order to thrive.  People all around the world need personalization.

Brands who have addressed this paradox include Adidas, whose Facebook page allows fans to pick their specific location in order to get news about local Adidas events, news and more.

#6: Bloggers Can Help Your Brand, And Keep Your Relationship With Them Mutual

@CXGbyShazza: “find the next wave of influencers (fashion bloggers) who represent your blog well and come up with them as they come up.” + American ApparelBloggers have been hugely influential in marketing campaigns, such as the way that American Apparel used blogger outfit pictures for a photo catalog.  In addition, LOFT has worked with blogs like Calivintage and What I Wore to guest edit for its website, and Jennine Jacob (of The Coveted and Independent Fashion Bloggers fame) has done a great job working with denim companies with eat sleep denim.

As Noricks explained, the trick to making relationships with bloggers work  is to sustain unique experiences with bloggers and to work with them, not just use them for your advertising strategy.  Perhaps one of the reasons why the Payless and Chictopia controversy was so controversial was that bloggers felt it wasn’t mutual, even if Payless’ use of Chictopia users’ images was legally sound.  In order to successfully work with bloggers, you have to let them be a part of — and enjoy — the experience and know the rules of conduct within their communities.

#7: The direct combining of Fashion and Technology will bring us closer to our clothing and closer to others.

@PR_Couture: “How will our relationship to clothing will change once we can print our shoes and program our dresses”

Syuzi Pakhchyan: Fashioning Technology by Influenca ONlineWriter and designer Syuzi Pakhchyan, the woman behind Fashioning Technology, talked about the innovations and concepts in wearable technology.  She showed us images of shoes made by Pauline Van Dongen in collaboration with Freedom of Creation, which were created using 3D printing, and also highlighted Imogen Heap’s Twitter equipped Twitdress that she wore onstage to the Grammy’s.

All this creativity is mindblowing.  Can you imagine what would happen if 3D printers were more accessible to everyone, and if ordering a new shirt or pair of shoes meant instant gratification (and a bit of DIY work)?  Can you imagine if more singers — or actors, or entertainers, or any celebrities, really — wanted their fans onstage and always wore clothing connected to social networking sites onstage?

#8: Technology in Fashion will help us be more aware of our environments, will hopefully lead to more sustainable clothing.

@TheMichaelShane: “Fashion+Technology: Sci-fi has imagined us n the future as cyborgs. Smart fabrics are more likely – more sustainable garments”

Pakhchyan also talked about smart fabrics used in garments like The Climate Dress, which visualizes the amount of CO2 in the air through LED lights.  Pakychyan also referenced the Walking City dress by Ying Gao, an amazingly beautiful garment that “breathes” with motion detection.

Such wearable technology function as art — art that is abstract and concept driven — but also demonstrate the very personal and social meanings in our clothing.  While technology and mass manufacturing is often said to have made garment lifecycles invisible to us, these examples of wearable technology prove that technology can also help us to see otherwise, helping us to see how clothing is affected by our everyday lives and environments.

If you are interested in reading more about Fashion Camp LA, then check out Kelsi Smith’s article about wearable technology at Dedicated Follower Of, Connie Cho’s article at California Apparel News, Crosby Noricks’ article about her PR presentation on PR Couture andTammy Trujillo’s re-cap on Fashion Hodge Podge.


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