meet tomorrow’s creative talents today

As part of ASOS's making it series, we celebrate fashion’s future, from wearable tech to innovative journalists, these are the creatives changing the fashion game.

by Jack Moss
18 April 2016, 3:40pm

Fashion is obsessed with the new. Whether they're rule-breakers or rebels, upstarts or thought-provokers -- fashion thrives on innovation. One only has to take the briefest of glances over the recent blanket coverage of Vetements, Balenciaga or Gucci to see that fashion is greedily fed by change and reinvention - a silhouette, a slogan, a new face, that buzz when a designer helms a house, or when an emerging young thing is discovered and claimed.

But what if we broadened what innovation actually means? Because more often than not, when we talk about newness in these terms, we talk about the world of the fashion show, the collection itself. But what about those working more quietly, changing the way that things actually work, those tinkering with the technology of fashion, the production system itself, or re-shaping our very perception of it?

So here, we introduce a band of creative ventures, and the people behind them, that are changing the way we think about fashion, how we consume it and in doing so, slowly but surely, defining its future.

Laser-lit bras, biosensors and a dress that sprouts wing-like forms when your adrenaline spikes - stepping into Chromat's world is a full-body immersion into the future. Started by one time architect Becca McCharen, New York-based Chromat was birthed to place her talent for form and structure onto the the female body - first swimwear, then full collections that re-shape and emphasise a woman's shape. But it's the fantasy of the future that Becca continually returns to, where women rule and technology augments - but don't mistake her "Chromat babes" for sexpot cyborgs - her trans-embracing, body-positive gang are primed and ready to take over the world. They are women, in her words, who are "strong, powerful, and unafraid."

When starting a brand it's always best to know as much as possible about the thing that you are going to sell. Or so we're told. And who knows more about beauty than Into The Gloss founder, Emily Weiss? I mean, her days are crammed with creams and potions and little squeezy bottles to make your skin look nicer. So that's why she started Glossier, a website selling her very own cosmetics - where simplicity is favoured, and opinion is welcome. Because, thanks to the consistent flow of women (and the occasional gent) that Into The Gloss attracts, she has a willing think thank of the beauty-obsessed at her disposal. Think of it as cosmetic based democracy -- make up for everyone -- regardless of skin tone, type or imperfection -- it's just a base. A base for whoever, or whatever, you feel like being.

Recens Paper
15-years-old may sound young for somebody to start an international fashion magazine. Not so for Elise By Olsen, founder of Recens Paper (and subsequent Guinness World Record holder for youngest ever Editor-in-Chief) who is actually entering the middle age of her fashion career, having started blogging when she was eight. Yes, eight. But the Oslo-based editrix is living proof that youth is wisdom, her magazine laying down a manifesto for the future - where imperfections are embraced, what we consume is challenged and hierarchies, like the cover of each issue, are turned upside down - "we riot against fake ideals, gender and race stereotypes, beauty standards and homogenising commercialism," Olsen says.

Knitwear renegades (yes, it's a thing) Unmade will never produce something that nobody wants. Because in a world where fashion is mass made, ready to be thrown away, Unmade believes in the power of one. The brainchild of RCA grads, Kirsty Emery, Ben Alun-Jones and Hal Watts, their custom made knitting machine means you can make a single custom jumper, exactly to your very own design. Or a hundred. Or more. There's no rules - no minimums, no maximums. Think of it as a 3D printer for jumpers. But, more than that, it's an experiment in modern craft -- encouraging those who use it to see the process of creation, to see the yarn being used -- the work usually hidden away in far-off factories.

There's something refreshing about a brand that believes clothing should be built to last. Clothes made to remain in your wardrobe for years to come. This was James Preysman's outline for online clothing brand, Everlane. The concept of the American-based retailer is simple - small runs, factories they trust, no physical stores. Or, as their motto says - "Know your factories. Know your costs. Always ask why." Easy, no? Oh, and it's trans-seasonal, too - simple clothing made for year round dressing, a rejection, and possible cure for, fashion's fatigued system. Because really, who chucks out their entire winter wardrobe come May?

Think your brand is the next big thing? Enter ASOS Fashion Discovery to win £50,000, plus business support. Find out how you can enter here.

Discover more on how you can 'make it' in the fashion industry with a series of think pieces, stories and films created by i-D, in collaboration with ASOS.


Text Jack Moss

making it
Recens Paper
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