SMARTCOAT with ETHICS
The market lacks solutions that combine functionality, design and innovation. The Project will develop a smartcoat, protecting the wearer byproviding a fully washable, waterproofcoat with a lighting and heating functionality together with a Smart design personalised via a Mobile app.
The Smart-coat blends design & tech, within the framework of green thinking. It is a highly functional high-tech product characterised by a unique design, impeccable quality, and environmental ethics.
THERAINCOAT is a brand founded by Petra Földi, specialized in high-quality waterproof coats of unique design. Raincoat (as a product category) and its production already requires merging design and technology; it is an item that embodies itself the unitedness of design and functionality. Therefore, our starting point was that design and technology are complementary and supportive to each other. In order to build gaps between fashion and top-level functionality, we have decided to raise the bar by developing a new waterproof product in case of which we further use technology as a driver, thus creating a piece which is smart in many different ways.
THE BIRTH OF THE PROJECT
We wanted to get to a product which aims at making the wearer’s life easier: by a single item to be used for all weather conditions, by using high quality fabrics, in the framework of a production which includes eco-conscious solutions whilst clothing is one of the most harmful industries. The coat is not only smart in a narrow sense, in connection with product features, but also in a broader sense, thanks to consciousness to the serious challenges in fashion industry that matter.
THE CREATIVE PROCESS
In terms of the design process, on one hand, we had some clear starting points. One of them was using the fabric already well known to us (a waterproof, windproof and breathable, recycled, fluorocarbon-free PES fabric by SympaTex). On the other hand, we wanted to ensure the multifunctionality of the coat, as well as the repairability and removability of the components of the heating system. Our aim was a trans-seasonal coat wearable with or without the technology. The outcome is a zip-out vest within the coat that hides the “hardware”.
In case of a project like ours, it is absolutely necessary to widen your knowledge and attention to many angles: understanding possible tech solutions, advantages and disadvantages of the different directions in the development process, assessing and understanding costumer needs, incorporating those needs to the development, changing, if necessary… Unless you are a true renaissance man, you will definitely need experts’ support. We are glad to team up with our partner Vapedock on the technology part and very grateful to the great support and guidance received in the framework of WORTH mentoring – this contribution was essential for the project.
We believe that reaching to the prototype phase is a great achievement, but for sure, we still have many to-dos if we want to step forward. Obviously 2020 re-wrote the possibilities for everybody and 2021 is still full of uncertainty… As soon as the sky clears, our plans include, among others, further testing and if necessary, fine-tuning in order to get a market and production- ready product. As for the product launch, we will also continue exploring our possibilities in terms of appearances (exhibitions, stores, online platforms) and financial supports as well.
Having clear ideas and a decisive attitude is great. Having the openness to listen to others is even better.
Thanks to WORTH project, we could experience that sharing experience, knowledge and ideas is beneficial for all participants and the only way to achieve complex goals.