IS WEARABLE TECHNOLOGY ACTUALLY WEARABLE?
The latest from Levi's, Hexoskin, and more
Constantly in the media and on our collective radars, wearable technology evolves as quickly as its non-sartorial counterparts. For the majority of new product offerings, it seems a manufacturers’ ego-driven competition, an exercise in “now look what we can do” rather than actually creating on-trend progressive fashion accessories with bona fide style credentials. There are diamonds in the rough however. Lurking quietly here you’ll find pieces that tick runway relevance boxes and function.
Dark Americana: Levi’s x Jacquard Jacket
THE INTEL: Dark brooding denim has never really gone out of style, but thanks to Raf Simons' unbreakably brilliant efforts for his new-ish tenure at Calvin Klein, as well as Maria Grazia Chiuri’s democratic denim for Dior, it has become once again a high fashion staple.
THE TECH: Levi teamed up with Google to reinvent their classic denim jacket, featuring cuff links that connect to a Bluetooth device; control music, screen phone calls, or get directions with a brush or tap of the cuff.
HOW TO WEAR: Double denim is nothing to be shy about, or as warmer climes approach, layer it over almost anything once the sun sets.
Body Con: Hexoskin’s Smart Shirt
THE INTEL: Sitting comfortably between athleticism and 1980’s power lycra ready-to-wear, the body con trend resurfaces nearly every season in some guise or another.
THE TECH: Hexoskin apparel features built-in cardiac, movement, and breathing sensors that allow athletes to monitor their performance without device interference.
HOW TO WEAR: It looks best paired with its sartorial opposite: loose, well-tailored angular skirts or pants. Layer with a seamless sports bra, or seamless tank with an in-built bra (Uniqlo’s and DKNY’s are affordable and sit smoothly).
Timeless Tailoring: Emel and Aris’s Self Heating Coat
THE INTEL: The trend speaks for itself and just simply never gets boring, working for professional or off-duty moments, especially when mixed with something casual or whimsical to break its sobriety.
THE TECH: This water and wind-repellant smart jacket has three temperature control settings so the jacket acts as a personal space heater and can be worn through any season.
HOW TO WEAR: For spring or fall, break up clean lines by mixing florals or bold print. Bright colors or metallics will also liven it up.
Fast Track: WearableX’s Nadi X Pants
THE INTEL: In recent years, athletic enthusiasts have found themselves on trend, without cease. It’s partly due to the revolution in wellness, and also thanks to various designers such as Balenciaga and Balmain elevating streetwear and sportswear to runway regal status.
THE TECH: These smart leggings pair with an app. Along with visual and audio cues, your practice is guided through gentle vibrations from sensors around the hips, knees, and ankles so you know when and how to move.
HOW TO WEAR: Just add some formality or femininity to make these stylish and fashion-forward. Try a pastel soft rib mohair or angora sweater, or boyfriend blazer with a loose tee. And try to keep away from sneakers—switch for luxe leather flats.
Logomania: Supa’s Powered Sports Bra
THE INTEL: The early 2000’s love affair with logos evaporated with the advent of Celine-inspired minimalism. But the tongue-in-cheek idea of brand affiliation and style tribes comes back around soon enough, and here it is again.
THE TECH: This sports bra features a heart rate sensor that’s made from fabric, so you can move freely while tracking your progress.
HOW TO WEAR: In short, with a heap of confidence. But only one logo per look, otherwise it gets a little tourist-on-Canal-Street. And make sure that all your other fabrics in the look are top notch luxe— satins, silks, leathers, embroidery—the more couture, the better, to keep it elevated.