Calgary

This Calgary company wants to light the way for fashion tech

MakeFashion has grown into one of the world’s largest fashion technology communities since launching in Calgary by being involved in runway projects, workshops and selling kits to fashion-forward individuals looking to make a statement.

'One of the big challenges is to have a garment that is washable,' co-founder says

Calgary fashion tech

4 years ago
Duration 1:45
Calgary fashion tech

The future of fashion might be really flashy, thanks to new wearable technology flooding into the market.

And one company on the cutting edge of the movement is MakeFashion. It's been finding international success since launching in Calgary a few years ago with products showing up on runways, in workshops and in the hands of fashion-forward individuals.

"The goal is ready-to-wear that anyone could wear on a night out, something that is washable, affordable and customizable," said co-founder Maria Hoover.

They created a product called StitchKit, which offers sewable technology, and has partnered to create high-end fashion with the lights already built in.

"Imagine a world where your clothes regulate your body temperature, monitor your vital signs, and your necklace begins to glow when the sun goes down," states the company's website.

This is part of the Lumen Couture collection, which was created by another MakeFashion co-founder. The light strips are powered using a USB connection and a power bank that is hidden on the dress. (Monty Kruger/CBC)

"We want people to think about what the future of fashion will be. It's a very visual way to represent it and it's accessible," Hoover said.

"One of the big challenges is to have a garment that is washable. You don't have to remove the lights."

Her company sells dresses and other fashion with the technology already embedded, but they also sell three levels of kits depending on how invested the buyer is in creating their own works of art.

Maria Hoover is a co-founder of MakeFashion, a Calgary company. It has created a product called StitchKit. (Monty Kruger/CBC)

"We wanted to make it easier for people to get involved in fashion tech. The technology can be a little bit intimidating."

The light strips are powered using a USB connection and a power bank that is hidden on the dress. A single charge lasts six to eight hours.

"You wear them to make a statement," Hoover said.

The company says it's about making fashion tech more accessible. (Monty Kruger/CBC)

With files from Monty Kruger

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