SPOTLIGHT: JULIA DAVIY - FASHION AND SUSTAINABILITY THROUGH TECHNOLOGY
Updated: Jun 30, 2020
Julia Daviy’s desire for a more sustainable fashion industry and how technology has played a role in her innovative approach.
When thinking about technological innovators within fashion, Julia Daviy isn’t necessarily the first name that comes to mind. As a matter of fact, it is highly probable that her name isn’t particularly recognisable, but it most definitely should be. Daviy is a rare unicorn of a designer who creates a fusion of artistic expression, digital design and innovative science through her skills as an inventor and environmentalist.
Within fashion, technology has been utilised in a multitude of ways, from enhancing otherworldly set designs for shows (a la Chanel and Alexander McQueen), to using artificial intelligence to gain insight on consumer behaviour and using it for business models and improved customer relations; but Julia Daviy has set out on an endeavour solely focused on sustainability.
“I started to learn and experiment with 3D printing for several reasons. I was looking for a sustainable and waste-free way of producing clothing.” Daviy noted, “I also noticed that the functions of clothing are changing, it is not all about beautification of our appearance anymore. And at the same time, it is almost impossible to find clothes in the market that will meet these new standards.”
It was a stark gap in the market in Julia Daviy’s eyes, who explained that her distain towards over-worked women in children within the fast-fashion landscape and hard logistics within the traditional fashion industry also catapulted her towards wanting to make a difference in the world.
“all of these forced me to look for better technology for the clothing production. For the last decade, I have been working with clean technology, especially within the solar energy industry.” The innovator said. “Working in this new industry and solving challenges every time, I was not afraid to meet them again but in a new industry.”
In 2018, after having worked with sustainable energy, Daviy presented the first ever collection of flexible and wearable clothes created digitally and printed out entirely on large-format industrial 3D printers thus christening the additive manufacturing strategy of a zero-waste production cycle and pioneering the use of 3D printers for practical use, as a means to an end.
Daviy is a pioneer who thrives at the crossroads of innovation and sustainability, using this adrenaline to create fashion’s first wearable clothing line created completely by large-format 3D printers.
“Evolution should never stop.” Daviy claims,
“I believe in an environment-centeric design approach and technology as the most important tool today to make radical changes and to direct the power of the clothing industry for making Good for the environment, humans, and other conscious living beings.” She continued.
Not only are her garments fashionable and technologically enhanced, but the designer truly dives into understanding that 3D printing is not the only way to save the amount of waste the industry emits onto our world, she is passionate about finding, not just “organic materials” but organic zero impact processes.
What helps Daviy stand out from so many other innovators, is her history and knowledge of an entirely different industry and her ability to apply it to the fashion world. She not only wants to make a sustainable and technologically savvy brand, but a brand that uses these techniques to create looks that are functional and wearable for women. She spent years mastering her techniques from her own apartment and experimented with materials and processes to finally achieve her goal.
The designer’s “Parametric Black Ocean Dress” was manually printed 3-dimensionally and made from mixed filaments of biodegradable material. The black dress is reminiscent of the shape of a sea star with hints of designs within it that represent marine life. “The idea of this dress is to attract attention to the problem facing the Oceans,” said the designer.
In addition to mastering the printing process of 3D garments, the inventor also debuted her original and inspiring collection of sustainable art bags created as a result of synthesising digital fabrication. Her handbags are the first carbon-neutral bags, meaning that the bags give off 92% less CO2 emissions in the supply chain and produce 98% less waste and water usage compared to traditional handbags. The handbag collection, the Morphogenesis Collection, draws inspiration from Alan Turing work on theory and mathematical description of the morphogenesis process which is the process of an organism developing its shape.
In all of her hard work and endeavours in such a short amount of time Julia is a perfect example of what being a fashion technology innovator is. It can be used to enhance a pre-existing company or actually create a change that we never thought could have been possible before.
“Technology is not deterministic; people are,” Julia succinctly said.
She believe that with a new 3D printing design approach and developing “soft geometry” in the garments with multi-colour 3D printing of flexible materials that the fashion industry will use technology to help sustainability become more mainstream.
Julia Daviy and her printing lab, The New Age Lab, (the home of the large-format industrial printers utilised by Daviy) successfully digitally printed the world’s largest 3D printed flag that sprawled 15.57 square metres, receiving an award from the Guinness book of world records in 2020. However, as the world fights the global pandemic of COVID-19, the company, keeping in tow with its mission statement to better the world through garment design and clothing production, dedicated their record-holding flag as a sign of American Ingenuity.
Not only is Julia an innovator, she's a world changer. She takes ideas that appeared to be nothing more than pipe dreams and turn them a reality to better our world. Yes, it is about finding the right design and structure, but it is also about teaching others in the industry, that sustainable, completely zero waste and fashion forward clothing is entirely attainable as long as you’re open to exploring the less explored territory of technological innovation within retail.