The 5 Women in Fashion Tech To Watch in 2020 and Beyond

Meet the trailblazers who are unafraid to think outside the box when it comes to delving deeper into the role that technology can play in the business of fashion.

“Please don’t characterize the strength that I bring to this meeting,” said the leader of House Democrats Nancy Pelosi to President Trump. These fighting words have become the mantra for many women who are aspiring to inspire in 2020. Of the broad and deep pool of talented females in fashion tech, not all of them are visible, so we have decided to sidestep the usual suspects who always appear on everyone’s “ones to watch” list, and instead, bring attention to five women who we will be keeping an eye on this year.

Anna Salewski: The Woman Driving A New Generation of Retail 5.0

We connected with Anna last year after she returned from Lisbon/WebSummit 2019. She told us that she had invented a comprehensive first mobile user-product interaction technology for retail, called SCROBLE. 

Asking her to elaborate, she explained: “SCROBLE technology changes the entire world of shopping as we know it; helping brands to improve overall performance and let users enjoying ultimate shopping convenience”. She continued: “SCROBLE, let’s disappear any borders between offline/online shopping in a straightforward way for both users and brands by introducing product-related mobile digital user experience within city retail”.

SCROBLE technology changes the entire world of shopping as we know it.”

 So imagine being able to interact with your phone in the store far more than you have ever been able to interact with your computer at home. SCROBLE makes it possible to combine digital and physical realities creating a universe of unimaginable possibilities! “Anyone can use SCROBLE technology and every brand delivering unique values available anywhere anytime to its customers as a mobile technology”, Anna told FashNerd.  

The startup has already completed tests for core features; the next step is to work with small local fashion brands so they can start multi-brand trials so they can receive first unique data chains. Anna shared: “To make it happen, we use the best available advanced technologies and AI. We have a new web page with a clear description of value proposition together with a video introducing the whole universe of SCROBLE.”

Laura Šilinska: The Self-proclaimed Material Nerd

Laura Šilinska is the founder and designer of senscommon, a minimalist lifestyle apparel label based in Amsterdam. Driven to enhance everyday living through innovative textiles and a pragmatic approach, Laura has been busy crafting future archetypes in close collaboration with sustainably, forward-thinking partners.

The self-proclaimed material nerd, Laura told FashNerd: “We start at the material level and build our brand from there – source by source, fibre by fibre. We research the tactile and functional qualities of old and new and yet-to-be-made textiles and let their performance naturally indicate their best use in the context of urban living”.

“Innovation doesn’t always require lasers and computer science when the smartest scientist among us is nature itself“.

With a passion for researching solutions like self-cleansing textiles that she uses in her products, Laura believes the future of fashion lies in smart textiles and that “innovation doesn’t always require lasers and computer science when the smartest scientist among us is nature itself“.

Emily Binder: Helping Companies Prepare for Emerging Technologies

Voice and emerging technology consultant, Emily Binder first came to our attention when we got into a conversation on Twitter. Passionate about voice technology, the Chief Strategist @beetlemomen helps companies stay relevant and succeed with emerging technology, primarily AI/voice assistants. “I help companies prepare for emerging technology, focusing on voice assistants like Alexa and Google,” she explains on her website.

With experience in launching successful strategies and campaigns for brands from early-stage to Fortune 500, the popular speaker on voice technology created a podcast and Voice Marketing – Daily Beetle Moment, an Alexa Flash Briefing about marketing and voice technology.

Clarabeth Smith: An Entrepreneur Behind The Zero-waste School Uniform

Clarabeth Smith is the creative director of Style Her Empowered (S H E), a non-profit organization that aims to empower girls and women through education and employment opportunities, is a recent graduate of Parsons School of Design. She completed a Masters in Fashion Studies program; her thesis was on how blockchain can inject transparency into harmful fashion systems: supply chain management, labour, material sourcing, etc. 

The fashion tech enthusiast has received praise for her zero-waste school uniform that grows six sizes and 1 foot in length, in efforts to keep girls in school longer. Reproducing uniforms, as well as private-label goods, in a responsible factory in Togo, Africa, all of their fabric waste is repurposed into reusable menstrual pads and blackboard erasers, which they distribute to girls. “We are currently sourcing a graphene-based smart textile to regulate temperature, provide garment longevity, and reduce the wearer’s risk of malaria”, Clara told FashNerd.

Our goal is to use our factory to produce wearable tech responsibly”. 

Currently, Clarabeth is developing a blockchain-based system to hold all of their “factory” data. “We need to keep track of how much our seamstresses are paid, their hours, the amount of CO2 we produce, the amount of fabric waste we recycle, and more. We hope that we can use tech to elevate the industry standard for how fashion manufacturing facilities operate and how fashion labourers are treated” explained Clarabeth. Adding, “Our goal is to use this factory to produce wearable tech responsibly”. 

Tabea Lier: Re-thinking Old Business Models To Drive Mindset Change

CEO and Founder of ReSeeDo Tabea Lier is on a mission to cut waste of new fabric and make gaps to (additional) goods. Tabea encourages brands to learn how the marketplace for “Golden Cutting “matches demand and supply and how they can generate sales from unused fabric. 

Driven to act even more sustainable in terms of resources, Tabea is re-thinking the old business models in the hope of driving mindset change. “In the current situation, the Garment turnover each year is about $2 Trillion, fabric claims about 10–12% of the total cost of a new fashion product/ garment. A minimum of 20% (NEW) fabric waste will be generated– also if cutting is handled automatically this calculates at least $20 Billion waste/ unused NEW fabric,” explains Tabea.

“[I’m] on a mission to cut waste of new fabric and make gaps to (additional) goods.”

With an objective to play a vital role in reducing 20% of NEW fabric waste to maximum of 10% without marker extension, Tabea plans to establish a toolbox of geometrical forms which fit into standard/ common markers and connect to different platforms/ networks, where mixed industries can “Demand & Supply “nominated fabrics. She is also looking to design a use case to show the reason “WHY Golden Cutting” and creating partnerships and relations with non–garment industries are a good idea.

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Founding editor-in-chief & WearableTechStylist of FashNerd.com, Muchaneta has worked in the fashion industry for over 14 years. She is currently one of the leading influencers speaking and writing about the merger of fashion with technology and wearable technology and a regular contributor to digital news sites like Wareable.