When we talk Technology and Fashion, L’Armure is the top brand to be examined in order to better understand the creative process behind a new clothing design trend.
The two designers behind this creativity momentum are Benny and Alexandre and guess what? We have talked to them…
Armure \aʁ.myʁ\ (nf.): From French “Armure” arrangement of the threads in a fabric which resembles the interlinked structure of chain mail, a ribbed structure material worn to protect the body in battle.
L’ARMURE is a modern functional urban-wear brand aiming to fuse garment textile innovation and style to provide affordable and elegant solution for every day challenges and activities.
Our design infuses European sensibility with Asian innovative creativity.
Our garments are sartorial artifacts worn to protect and express one’s personality.
Crafted by combining durable weather protection with Creative lightweight structured textiles and cut adapted for the Asia-Pacific Summer and Soft-Warmth allowing layering adaptability for winter.
Armure \aʁ.myʁ\ (nf.) :
The brand wants to change the perception of Fashion “Made in Taiwan” and go beyond its borders.
I am inspired by the world of tomorrow and I am trying to push it forward through my creations, infusing technologies into everyday wear clothes that are unique, comfortable and affordable.
As a fashion designer, my main strength is my passion to combine things; to fuse together designs, fabrics, sensibilities or even industries that have in appearance nothing in common.
My main challenge is to use my European sensibility in harmony with Taiwanese innovation expertise to create fashion forward items adapted to Taiwanese people expectations.
Please choose 3 words to introduce each other?
Alexandre– Benny is hardworking, creative and resourceful.
What’s your definition of design?
Alexandre– Design is the combination of problem solving, innovation and creativity. Creating things that have a purpose and a meaning into people’s lives.
What skills are required to be good designer?
Alexander– In my opinion the capacity to combine and improve concepts using a large spectrum of inspiration and extrapolate it to create new forms.
What or who are your inspirations?
Alexandre – I am inspired by functionality, both from the past and the future, technologies that have been used and the ones that I hope to see becoming reality. My references comes mostly from pop-culture, how artists, movies, comics envisioned theses technologies.
To you, what’s the most amazing technological innovation(s)? Why?
Benny – HusseinChalayan這位設計師將高度美感並靈活的結合材質特性使服裝變化是最棒的。從讓人記憶猶新的2007春夏系列(運用「記憶合金纖維」與溫度來讓衣服改變造型的系列)，到去年2017年的水溶服裝，每次都會為他的新作品驚嘆，是讓材質科技與時尚美感達到最好加乘效果的範例。
Alexandre – Electricity: simply because every modern technologies depends on it.
What’s your view on the current technology development? (i.e. artificial intelligence)?
Alexandre – I think we live in a complicated age where Internet and medias allow scientific to collaborate and access to more information, while also submitting their research to the public eye. It can both be an accelerator and a break for innovation. We are also in a transitioning place where technologies like deep neural networks opens new ways to invent and assist while slowly replacing human involvement at the same time.
L’Armure is a unique brand based on clothing design and technology inspirations. How do you work out these two themes together? Any difficulties?
Alexandre – L’ARMURE is aiming to blend functional innovation from sportswear and outerwear to everyday clothing, showcasing creative garments that are still wearable, the difficulty comes from applying these technologies in new ways that makes sense but are different from their original purpose.
Taiwan is well known as a “tech” country, is it an accelerator of opportunity for you or an obstacle in your clothing design field?
Benny – 台灣身為在世界頗具影響力的紡織產業，其產值能來帶動在時尚產業，提高國際認知度。但在材質上不斷的創新技術，需要在設計上結合美感與創意來搭配，才能貼近時尚產業。幫助產業從B2B轉換至B2C需要更多時間來努力。
Alexandre – Access to these technologies is positive, but the issues comes from the perception of the “Made in Taiwan” products as only heavily industrialized tech, where it also exist a creative scene that is trying to change this perception by making more personal and limited products in other industries.
In the future, let’s say in the next decade, how do you see the evolution of the textile industry? And why?
Benny –服裝將更貼近人體所需，增加除了裝飾以外賦予衣著更高的機能或更直接的功能性。Alexandre – Taiwanese Textile industry has to evolve, companies needs to be more than suppliers and come up with new way to display their own creativity and innovation through collaborative product or their own brands.
Taiwan clothing design history is quite young, what’s your insider view about the industry drivers?
Alexandre – One of the main issues for growth in Taiwan Fashion industry is the limited size of the local market and the key decision factors for Taiwanese consumers. As long as price and short-term value are the most important factors it will be hard for new brands to survive.
What are the three key words to describe Taiwan clothing design industry?
Benny – 開發中、有展望性的。
Alexandre – Nothing really positive…
If you could leave a mark in the design industry, how would you like to be remembered?
Benny –期待我所設計的作品是能傳達出想法、讓人們穿上時能讓他們獲得歸屬感的。Alexandre – For me innovation and a touch of fun are very important, to have designs that people feel relevant to them, new and push them to innovate in their wardrobe choices.
Working in Taiwan in a Taiwanese tech/design company? Is it an advantage or an inconvenient for fashion?
Benny –布料是服裝設計中很重要的元素，如何用新的元素來呈現自己的想法總是有趣的。Alexandre – Being in the heart of the textile industry is an amazing opportunity to bring the innovation faster to the consumer, to be able to access a large panel of technologies, to understand them and directly integrate them in our products is the key to our brand DNA.
More and more brands and designers associate fashion and art. What connections do you make between these two: Fashion and Art?
Alexandre – We partner with artists from diverse industries to promote their creations and offer garment solutions to fulfill their visions. L’ARMURE is also showcasing the “Artist series:” collection, where we collaborate with artists to bring their talents and spirit into new garments forms.
For more: https://www.larmure.com.tw
Interviewed by Sanza Bulaya