When fashion meets technology, sparks fly

Main image credit: Kanerva Mantila & Marko Rantanen

When Mert Otsamo was a young child, he began making clothes inspired by cartoons and videogames. Fashion has always been in his blood.

Based in Finland, the self-taught designer whose heritage lies in Northern Ostrobothnia and Turkey, has already been featured in numerous international fashion magazines, despite his young age.

Having recently launched his first ready-to-wear collection this autumn, the Transpicuous collection – named after the translucent materials and character of reality – includes form-fitting party dresses as well as a collection of avant-garde street styles which combine the contrast of street fashion and luxury.

Interestingly, the collection itself has been inspired by social and cultural developments where technology has become part of the evolution.

Image credit: Jari Tolvanen

Two worlds collide
At first glance, the blending of fashion and technology might seem a strange combination. For most people, the idea of fashion design conjures images of textured fabrics, cutting material, blending colours, sketching shapes and experimenting with the way clothes look on real people. These are all very physical, tangible traits, which seem far removed from digital screens, bits and bytes.

For Mert, however, technology plays a crucial role in allowing himself to express his passion in his art form.

“3D printing, laser cutting and other new techniques and technologies are paving the way for the fashion world of tomorrow that will be more attractive, affordable and democratic. Designing with digital devices can also be seen as embracing sustainable values.”

“New technology combined with art and textile techniques and programs likewise enable techniques and combinations of techniques that cannot be made by hand. This saves time and can be dedicated to polishing the thought process and specifics behind a design.”

Mert’s approach to using technology to enhance and compliment existing techniques opened the door to unique designs and ideas that otherwise may never have come to fruition.

It’s an example that synergises with Microsoft’s mission to empower every person and organisation on the planet to achieve more. Devices such as the Surface Pro and Surface Studio, for example, allow artists like Mert to express themselves and create without compromise, while supplementing their creativity with technological tools that give them the freedom to explore previously unthinkable avenues.

“I believe that ‘the secret’ to what I do is my ability to mix together the physical and imagined worlds”, Mert explains. “Half of my time I stay in the physical world and the other half in the mind design process, drafting new ideas, observing life.”

“We live in a time where people need less physical possessions and do less physical work. We are lucky enough to be living in this time of revolution, as we are reaching a turning point and a culmination in new ways to create.”

For more information on the Transpicuous collection, please visit here.

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