Startup Weekend Fashion and Tech. What a combination!

01 Nov 2014
| Last update: 23 Sep 2015

Startup Weekend Fashion and Techstartup weekend


[ Photo credits: See-ming Lee’s Flickr ]

Is fashion and technology reunited such great news to you? Well, for the last 10 years it has made quite a career in Poland, and people’s awareness has improved in the field, not to mention that in many Fashion Days events, there are Tech apps launched and startups promoted. Do you like the Combination? Then hop in the Weekend Fashion and Tech in 5 different cities of the world.

A one-of-a-kind event has taken place this past month in 4 cities of the world: New York, London, Milan and Paris and it will culminate on the 18th of October in Poznan, Poland with the Global Fashion Battle. Each of these cities hosted Fashion & Tech themed Startup Weekends. The winners of each event will battle in the grand finale in Poznan, which is the home of the 8th Art & Fashion Forum powered by Grażyna Kulczyk.

The motto of the 8th edition: CHIC GEEK

The Art & Fashion Forum, powered by Grażyna Kulczyk, Stary Browar and Elles, is the 8th edition of the event organized in Poznan every year since 2007. The festival is the norm for inspiration and education in art and fashion. Notable specialists around the world take part in the workshops held during it and people in art start building connections and their horizons are widened and their knowledge enriched.

The motto of this year’s edition is CHIC GEEK.  As written in Forbes, it is “an event popularizing everything lying on the edge of technology and design”.

Bradford Shelhammer will be the curator of the whole event. He is a designer, innovative entrepreneur and the founder of the most successful design store in the world: He’s also the icon of the synergy between chic and geek.

The meeting about to be held in October will be combining fashion and technology. There will be workshops, exhibitions and ceremonies. What’s so wildly enthusiastic about this year’s event is that the AFF (Art & Fashion Forum) is holding the Global Fashion Battle. The startup battles were organized in the global fashion capitals by AFF and Startup Weekend, and now the winners of the last round come to Poznan, in Stary Browar. The festival will bring together startups from Central and Eastern Europe. The New Market trade show will also take place during AFF.

Wondering why the 5 cities?

The Fashion & Tech Startup Weekends were hosted in the 4 cities to coincide with their respective Fashion Weeks for the SS15 collections, while in Poznan you’ve already found out why the AFF takes place.

Technology enters the world of fashionstartup weekend

[ Photo credits: Studio Roosegaarde’s Flickr ]

As the guys from Stary Browar put it: “Fashion and Technology are not fields that have previously been known for their interaction. Until now.” (Read more…)

Both industries have entered a fast change. It’s because of the wearables, e-commerce sites, online stores, fashion trends, the latest technology trends, and apps developed in mixing these 2 divergent directions.

The Startup Weekends are focused on building startups concerned with the Fashion and Retail industry, while great emphasis lies on users and their shopping experience, the way they see fashion and how they can be helped in stylizing their lives more easily and comfortably, maybe with only a click on their smartphone, or by installing an app.

So, employing new materials in new ways, finding a way to automate manual processes and creating methods to analyze useful fashion information, establishing a new product category, could all be ideas for a new inspiring startup.

Bradford Shelhammer tells us that artists “have always been innovators” and by use of technology they can now connect more to people and stir up the emotions in them. David Hockney, a famous painter,  showed him how technology and art met in San Francisco, 2013. He exposed his works of art from the last 10 year and they were astounding. The fact is they were all made on his iPad or iPhone. However, this is not something new, because digital painting has been in vogue in the last years. I believe it’s only a shift in people’s awareness that leads to this type of startup weekends, which are to everyone’s benefit. Our culture benefits, our knowledge and the art, because if you think about it, our world highly depends on technology nowadays and if we don’t manage to connect culture and art with it, even fashion, it will soon die out.

Jacek Majewski, the Creative Director of Super Super, highlights how this year is focused on the connection between technology and art. They managed to combine fashion with 3D art, if you can believe that.  Their aim is to revolutionize fashion!

Here, take a peek at the video:

Recap of the Startup Weekend

The cities hosted a Startup Event Weekend, which was a 54-hour event in which designers, developers, techies and non-techs pitched their ideas and started new companies from scratch. This was all due to Startup Weekend, a global movement of active and empowered entrepreneurs who aim to teach others how to fund companies and launch successful startups. It’s the largest entrepreneurial community with over 400 past events in 100 countries.

The Startup Weekend Events follow a simple pattern: you pitch your startup idea, you receive feedback from the jury and your peers, and you enter this amazing community. Teams form around top pitched ideas and then in 54 hours you create, code, design your business model, propose it and find out its market validation. The presentations are held in front of local entrepreneurial leaders, so you have the chance to get critical and valuable feedback.

So, what were some unique startup ideas successfully promoted for the final round of the Global Fashion Battle?

Sew Heidi connects us to the 20 Fashion Tech Companies who competed for the title in London. As she terrifically shows in her post, it’s great that aside from the pitch the startups presented, they were granted useful feedback, both negative and positive. Even the winners of 1st prize, from London,  Privilege, were given some advice by Liz Bacelar, member of the jury. Their plan was to bring beauty experts directly to your home to offer you beauty services. The app matches customers with stylists, based on the customers needs and availability. Their idea came from the ever-rising need for on demand service and house calls. So, it’s no wonder they won.

As Sew Heidi shows, they only had 54 frantic hours, more like a marathon to prepare their pitches, and only 5 minutes to deliver their ideas. It’s no wonder some of the 20 teams failed to deliver their solution, because as the jury members stated, describing the problem they wanted to overcome took too much time. This was the case of Dapper Exchange, which offered resale high-end menswear at deeply discounted prices in the online marketplace.

One pitch I had fun reading about was Curate, though it did not win because “this seems like a crazy idea, and I don’t mean like cool crazy, I mean confusing crazy” the judges commented. I liked it how they wanted to use big data and analytics for fashion and consumers’ needs, so as to clean and order your own closet, building a library of your clothes and styles, and receiving suggestions on how to dress. It seems fun, but I agree it’d be time-consuming to sort it all, so they need to figure more on how to do this.

So, these are some of the pitches in fashion and technology at the Startup Weekend in London I liked. Did you attend one of the Weekends and what startups did you like? Write in the comments and also tell me who do you think will win the Global Fashion Battle on the 18th of October.




Ligia Mangra
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Ligia Mangra

Content Writer at Squirrly
A passionate writer. I love seeing a full moon and I like to rock 'n roll in life. Can't wait till my first novel gets published. Thumbs up, it'll be a fantasy horror!
Ligia Mangra
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