Shape Changing Dresses and Shareable Wearables
Somewhere between fashion, art, performance, technology, architecture, and that mom who dresses her twins exactly the same everyday, lies the work of Di Mainstone. Though she first stretched her creative wings at UK fashion brand Soochi, the collaborations she found herself initiating with architects and dancers would alter her route from the traditional to the experimental, creating wearables that are far from what you’ll find at Forever 21.
Mainstone’s pieces can read and interpret body gestures, and respond appropriately with specially created audio soundscapes. Or, it might use the body as a terrain to send messages from one wearer to another. A spin of a parasol will light up her counterpart’s tie, or garments will snap together in varieties of ways with unexpected results. One of her most remarkable creations is a line of dresses that has a mind of its own – integrating shape-memory alloys, magnets, and electrical circuits, what first appears to be couture off a Paris catwalk will suddenly start to envelop or reveal the model, entirely on its own. This line of Skorpion dresses is more likely to be displayed in a dark room — peep show style — than near any Fashion Week tents. Small intimate environments, voyeurism, exhibitionism, and performance are as much a part of these pieces as the textiles and engineering themselves.