Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Blog Update: 5 Things

5 things, beyond the scope of our city, that are currently blowing my mind:

1. This Maryupa cuff by Marilyn Tan

Presented at the 2011 tradeshow Blueprint in Singapore, this bacteria-inspired hand-made piece calls to me. Using nature as the inspiration for her entire line, Marilyn Tan features a variety of gold finishes and semi-precious stones such as sapphires, moonstones, and agates in her jewelry.

2. Korea’s Virtual Grocery Stores

Although typically utilized in urban cities, home-delivery grocery stores are not a new concept. However, virtual grocery shopping with QR codes is. Launched in Korea, this clever concept addresses the needs of hard-working Koreans who dread grocery shopping.

The idea here is to “let the store come to the people” and address time-wasting activities, according to ad agency Cheil Worldwide. So, the agency created virtual supermarket shelves in subway stations.

Here’s how it works: Customers find a product they wish to purchase, scan the QR code with their smartphones, add the product to their virtual carts, and the products are delivered to them when they get home.

With the 10,000 customers who utilized the virtual grocery store between November 2010 and January 2011, Homeplus grocery store increased sales by 130%. This only begs the question: Is apparel shopping next? Imagine virtual stores from H&M, Gap, or Forever21, or billboards that allow you to purchase the items directly from them using QR codes. Needless to say, the influence of technology on retailing is limitless.

3. This 2011 French Connection Advertisement

French Connection’s You are woman? / You are man? campaigns have been in production for a few seasons now, but this ad truly highlights the androgynous and gender-swapping roles men and women can play.

4. Luminescent Silk Worms

While doing research for an upcoming marketing course I’ll be teaching this quarter, I stumbled upon this new textile ‘innovation’ for the Spring/Summer 2013 color collection on WGSN. Bright hues mixed with whitened pastels are designed to give an unworldly and recolored quality to fashion designs for 2013. To achieve luminescent pop color contrasts utilizing natural filament fibers, textile producers have developed a new product: luminescent silk. Silk worms (who, FYI, can no longer survive in the wild due to hundreds of years of domestication) are fed a diet of mulberry leaves and glow-in-the-dark dyes to produce vibrant pink threads. According to WGSN, “This example of ingested colour uses an augmented natural occurence to create supernatural hues.”

A normal silkworm (bombyx mori)...

.... and the new silkworm.

I’m going to say it right here- Not. A. Fan.

5. Philip Treacy Hats

The London-Based hat designer, who in 1991 won the British Fashion Award, found fame when fashion icon, Elizabeth Blow, began commissioning him for exquisite pieces. Treacy’s collections are now sold worldwide. Here are some of my favorites:

photo credit: wgsn; silkworm 1: http://www.metrolic.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/11/largesilk.jpg

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