For the last few years, fashion labs focused on technology have been popping up around the globe. With the aim of transforming the fashion industry, they are working and supporting startups and entrepreneurs by helping them develop types of innovation in areas of fashion, retail, and technology. Of the many, we have picked seven that could be right for you.
Fashion Tech Lab
Digital entrepreneur Miroslava Duma is the woman behind Fashion Tech Lab (FTL). It is a hybrid created to both disrupt and transform the fashion ecosystem. Along with high-profile mentors board like Diane von Furstenberg, the Moscow-based fashionista is looking to disrupt and empower an industry of excess into a technologically advanced, environmentally friendly, and socially responsible enterprise. She wants to fund, connect and develop cutting-edge technologies and sustainable innovation with the aim of transforming the fashion industry.
New York Fashion Tech Lab
The New York Fashion Tech Lab (NYFTL) was co-founded and produced by nonprofit venture catalyst, Springboard Enterprises in 2014. Focusing on Female Founders, Fashion and Retail Technology Innovation and Early to Growth Stage Emerging Tech Companies, NYFTL connect a select cohort of women-led, fashion-focused technology companies with New York’s leading fashion retailers and brands fostering iteration, validation, and acceleration of technologies to advance the industry. Recently announced New York Fashion Tech Lab partnership with Accenture for their 2018 program. “The combination of Accenture’s technology and innovation expertise with its commitment to women entrepreneurs and diversity is a perfect fit for the New York Fashion Tech Lab,” said Kay Koplovitz, co-founder of the NYFTL and chairman of Springboard Enterprises.
Fab labs provide widespread access to modern means for invention. They began as an outreach project from MIT’s Center for Bits and Atoms (CBA), and became a collaborative and global network. Designed to be a platform for innovation and invention, Fab Lab encourages creatives to play, create, learn, mentor and invent. It is a global community of learners, educators, technologists, researchers, makers, and innovators, who span over 30 countries and 24 time zones.
The Digital Anthropology Lab
The Digital Anthropology Lab is located at London College of Fashion, University of the Arts London. It is an emerging research center dedicated to making smarter technology for a better human experience. Working across industry and academia through the lens of fashion and tech, the Digital Anthropology Lab is radically re-imagining the emerging fashion- tech space by exploring both the beautification of technology for wearables and critically explore the ‘why.’
Fashion & Technology LAB
Based in Paris, Fashion & Technology LAB‘s emulation is between creativity and innovation in the fashion industry. Relying on a network of experts and mentors familiar with the environment and issues specific to young fashion companies and the global fashion and luxury industries, the Fashion & Technology LAB offers universal supporting and nurturing programme and sourcing funding to enable projects to achieve their growth targets. Driven by the desire to provide innovative and unique value to customers, the Lab is on the lookout for the next big fashion tech startups, and designers who are ready to disrupt the codes of the industry.
Fashion Technology Accelerator
Fashion Technology Accelerator is a global infrastructure for fashion technology entrepreneurs. With offices in Silicon Valley, Milan, and Seoul they attract early adopters of the digital revolution who are transforming the fashion and luxury industry. Providing post-revenue startups in the fashion technology space with resources to grow and increase market cap, Fashion Technology Accelerator maintains equity positions in fashion tech businesses in United States, Great Britain, South Korea, Israel, France, and Lithuania, with previous exists in China and United States.
Tech Noir Lab
Founded in 2016, Tech Noir Lab brings together the top pioneers in design and technology from around the globe to work collaboratively, creating wearable and embedded technology solutions. Tech Noir Lab works with designers who want to incorporate cutting-edge technology into their brands and technology companies who want to integrate design into their products. From Consulting to Prototypes to Innovative Smart Materials and Design and Manufacturing, their objective to is to help startups execute and stay ahead of their competitors.
The Centre for Fashion Enterprise
For many startups, coming up with a brilliant fashion tech idea is the natural part, the challenge is in trying to successfully turn a great idea into a viable and commercial product. Luckily for some, help comes in the shape of The Centre for Fashion Enterprise (CFE). Delivering bespoke support to designers, the Centre for Fashion Enterprise (CFE) is a pioneering strategic business development initiative that incubates, supports and develops leading emerging designer labels in the luxury and high-end fashion sectors.
So to conclude, some of the LABS mentioned above have managed to churn out some great startups. Therefore, it is not a question of whether these LABS are helping the fashion tech space move forward because some have succeeded in doing so. It is more about knowing whether this is a route that is right for you and making sure that before you apply you double check that you fit their criteria and that you have read the small print.