Traditional fashion industry is going digital – join our panel discussion at Exthereal to learn how!

Exthereal is an online conference about digital fashion and extended reality. It brings together pioneers of digital couture, prominent visionaries of the metaverse, technical experts and fashion brands. Exthereal is a side event for the biggest Slush 2021, world’s leading start-up event organised in Helsinki.

The fashion industry is going through a significant transition. In addition to sustainability, digitalisation has a significant impact on the renewal of fashion industry, its products, production, distribution, and business models.

Digital clothing was first used in games, but the demand for constant “newness” in fashion – intensified by social media – and the increasing push for more sustainable fashion are both driving the trend forward. Digital fashion is one of the fast-growing trends that touches fashion designers, manufacturers, and consumers equally. It offers a sustainable alternative for consumers and traditional fashion industry. With digital clothing, there is no need for raw materials, energy, or transportation to get the latest fashion innovations to the consumer.

“The biggest motivator in a digital change journey is the capability to build on early successes and show progress with every step. It’s important to think big, but start small to you allow for this kind of progress. New technology adoption does not happen overnight – having ambassadors at all levels of the organization, including external ambassadors, will help to evangelize the change, ” says Anne-Christine Polet, head of Hatch and Stitch, Dutch companies focusing on digitizing the fashion value chain and creating the future of fashion.

To be a good digital fashion designer you need to be a good fashion designer

Digital opportunities are also changing the design of clothing. Fashion industry is learning the ways of working typical to Open Source collaboration and sharing. Fashion brands are working with fashion tech companies to develop software and tools for 3D design, and 3D tools, designs, and learnings are openly shared.

Elina Lappalainen is the women’s lead designer for Makia Clothing with over a decade of experience in the Nordic fashion industry and collaborating with global brands. “We want to actively contribute to the discussion about the possibilities that digitalisation creates to the fashion industry and encourage brands to work together to promote this transformation.“

In the production of clothing, digital design processes make it possible for fashion companies to cut, for example, their raw material losses. Fashion brands can use real-like 3D garment samples  for selling in clothes instead of flying them around the globe, and in addition they can only physically produce those items that are the biggest sellers.

Halti, one of leading outdoor brands in Finland, produces a wide variety of durable, high-quality garments each season.

“Over the past few years, the product development team became increasingly determined to reduce the number of physical sample iterations throughout the approval process. 3D helps us visualize, iterate and virtually fit the garment before any actual protosamples are made. We can also engage our stakeholders easily at this stage to co-create if necessary,” says Laura Roman, the Head of Operations and Sustainability, Halti.

Join the experts’ panel discussion on December 1

Finnish Textile & Fashion, the industry lobby and employers’ association of over 200 Finnish member companies in the textiles and apparel industry, is organizing a panel discussion at the Exthereal Conference on Dec 1. In the discussion Anne-Christine Polet, Elina Lappalainen and Laura Roman will discuss the ways traditional fashion industry is becoming more digital. The panel is moderated by Marja-Liisa Niinikoski, the Managing Director of Finnish Textile & Fashion.

“I am looking forward to an exciting panel discussion, in which we will focus on how digitalisation affects fashion design and how the brands can scale their digital practices. At Finnish Textile & Fashion, we find it intriguing to be a part of this large-scale digital conference that provides the industry with a sneak peek to the disruption of fashion”, says Marja-Liisa Niinikoski.

Read more about Exthereal Conference taking place in Helsinki Nov 29Dec 1, 2021.