Credit: Charli x Diablo

Now Runway: Wear Your Chromie Squiggles on Your Sleeve

BY Afrodet Zuri

June 02, 2023

Welcome back to Now Runway, where we report to you from the frontlines of the digital fashion and luxury revolution. Earlier this week, we helped break the news of the collaboration between The Fabricant and Highsnobiety on our Twitter. We couldn’t be more excited to own our very first varsity jacket (digital or otherwise).

Prada TimeCapsule releases a new floral jersey in time for our European summer, Charlie Cohen is bringing us along to the next evolution of gaming and fashion, Snapchat Bitmojis just got an upgrade in the form of a Band Tee and Chromie Squiggles now come in sweater form courtesy of Tribute Brand. Read on to see what else you missed this past week.

Tribute Brand x Chromie Squiggles

​​Tribute Brand has partnered with Waste Yarn Project — an initiative that creates one-of-a-kind, 100 percent zero-waste knitwear using surplus yarn — and Chromie Squiggles, the genesis art project from generative art platform, Art Blocks, to create ODDS.

ODDS is a generative sweater collection derived from the on-chain source code of Chromie Squiggle. A digital script converts the Chromie Squiggle source code into distinctive physical and digital wearables, each linked to a specific Chromie Squiggle and instantly identifiable as 1of1ofX by all.

Chromie squiggles and corresponding sweaters
Credit: Tribute

The script utilizes a seed input to manipulate various variables in each Chromie Squiggle, generating an on-chain token containing instructions for crafting physical sweaters and virtual experiences in the form of digital skins. These tokens may serve as blueprints for future production and editions.

The primary variable influencing the sweater’s appearance is the Chromie Squiggle type — normal, bold, fuzzy, slinky, ribbed, pipe — terms typically employed in knitwear to characterize the yarn’s appearance or knitting stitch. The Chromie Squiggle type, along with three additional variables (color spread, steps between, and segments), dictate the colors and their arrangement throughout the knitted panels.

Chromie Squiggles sweaters
Credit: Tribute

Due to the surplus yarns and blends used to ensure a consistently soft texture and durability in the final product, the sweaters occasionally exhibit a peculiar resemblance to the actual Chromie Squiggles colors, resulting in unique compositions for each sweater. This controlled randomness contributes to the beauty and distinctiveness of each ODD sweater.

Embedded Tribute Brand NFC chips are included in the sweaters, which connect to the Tribute App. This connection acts as an authentication mechanism, offers care instructions, and enables users to alter the appearance of the digital sweater through AR technology.

This limited-quantity project will launch via the Tribute Brand website and will be available to all. Chromie Squiggle owners have the exclusive ability to generate sweaters from their Chromie Squiggle, while those without one can still create unique sweaters based on the Chromie Squiggle code.

The Fabricant x Highsnobiety

The Fabricant collaborates with Highsnobiety — a global fashion and lifestyle media brand — on a limited edition collection for Not In Paris, the media brand’s flagship event taking place IRL during Paris Fashion Week. The drop features three digital varsity jackets, The Parisian Mirage, The Eiffel Tower Pursuit, and The Echoes of Paris, designed by The Fabricant to be worn in augmented reality.

The Parisian Mirage  jacket
The Eiffel Tower Pursuit, jacket
Credit: The Fabricant
The Echoes of Paris jacket

The Parisian Mirage possesses an illusionary effect of a surface that sometimes seems realistic and, at other times, is a mirage-like reflection of the surrounding environment. The Eiffel Tower Pursuit, a digital twin of the timeless varsity jacket, features miniature Eiffel Towers that swirl around you as you stroll the city. The Echoes of Paris is adorned with patches that exhibit a mesmerizing visual spectacle due to their slow-motion effect when you’re in motion.

The Not in Paris collection priced at 33 Flow ($24 USD) drops on The Fabricant on June 21.

Prada’s Timecapsule Collection

Prada launched its thirteenth exclusive Timecapsule Collection, a physical piece of clothing accompanied by an NFT of a corresponding time capsule. For Drop #42 of the Timecapsule collection, Prada presents the third and final unisex tank top, drawing inspiration from basketball jerseys and crafted from upcycled materials sourced from the Prada archive. The June design is fashioned from cotton, adorned with a floral pattern reminiscent of a tropical environment, Prada’s enameled triangle logo on the front, and the word “June” on the back.

Credit: Prada

Initially introduced on December 5, 2019, in Europe, Prada Timecapsule unveils a fresh item on the first Thursday of each month – an online exclusive available for only 24 hours. The NFT grants membership to Prada’s Crypted NFT community, providing access to upcoming projects, releases, and invitations to runway shows as well as special events such as Prada Mode and Prada Extends. 

Charli Cohen x Diablo IV

Charli Cohen, the designer behind Nextwear, has announced a partnership with Blizzard Entertainment‘s eagerly awaited game, Diablo IV. Set to launch on Monday, June 19, through a pop-up event at Selfridges, this experience aspires to bridge the gap between fashion and gaming, opening up a new dimension of potential. Combining Cohen’s established commitment to blending technology and fashion with the backing of the gaming community, the duo seeks to create a unique fusion for the most passionate fans from both realms.

Diablo characters in outfits
Credit: Charli x Diablo

Cohen shared with us, “Video games have led the charge in creating a world where both digital identity and digital exploration of identity hold as much weight as physical self-expression. We are so excited to partner with as iconic an IP as Diablo, forging the essence of the game into the physical world through our limited edition collection of garments and then back into virtual via AR and NFC.”

​​The collaboration delves into the intersections of gaming and fashion by incorporating advanced AR activations, NFC chip authentication, and the integration of physical clothing. By merging the tangible and virtual realms, the community can participate in live events, enjoy augmented reality encounters, and acquire physical attire that provides opportunities for digital incorporation.

Mercedes-Benz drops NFTs

Mercedes-Benz is joining the growing list of luxury car manufacturers dropping NFTs under Mercedes-Benz NXT, the automaker’s latest Web3 division that concentrates on digital collectibles and virtual experiences. In the debut core collection Maschine, the automaker collaborated with Dutch artist Harm van den Dorpel and Fingerprints DAO, a platform dedicated to collecting and creating art built on top of blockchain technology with a high curatorial bar. This generative art series delves into themes of motion, velocity, and perception.

colorful swirls
Credit: Harm van den Dorpel

For Maschine, van den Dorpel selected motion, speed, and perception as central motifs. Each of the 1,000 distinctive artworks showcases a captivating radial design consisting of intricate and perpetually shifting illusions that arise when specific objects rotate and gain momentum. This is influenced by the so-called wagon-wheel effect, where spoked wheels seem to spin in a manner that contradicts their actual speed and direction.

In the course of the project, van den Dorpel developed and trained a neural network to recognize and choose generated outputs that align with his artistic tastes. Although he has previously incorporated AI into his work, this marks the first time he has employed a custom neural network. It’s also his initial foray into fully 3D artwork.

The Mercedes-Benz Design team participated in every facet of the collaboration. Gorden Wagener, who has held the position of chief design officer at Mercedes-Benz since 2016, closely cooperated with van den Dorpel to creatively mold the concept and synchronize artistic directions. Maschine will be accessible solely through Fingerprints DAO’s website during a rebate Dutch auction on June 7.

Snapchat’s Band Tees collection

Snapchat launched its inaugural Band Tees collection, providing music enthusiasts worldwide with a novel method to support their favorite artists and showcase their fandom via their Bitmoji attire. For this initial merchandise line, Snapchat collaborated with Republic Records to unveil six new digital merch tops from some of the most popular contemporary recording and touring artists: Greta Van Fleet, The Jonas Brothers, Kim Petras, Lil Wayne, Metro Boomin, and Nicki Minaj.

Bitmojis
Credit: Snap Inc.

To access the Band Tees collection, Snapchat users can go to their profile screen, choose Bitmoji, and then tap “Change Outfit.” The Band Tees collection can be found under the Outfits, Tops, and Outerwear tabs in the Bitmoji Fashion section of the avatar builder.

Snapchat shared in a press release, “With the launch of the new collection of Band Tees for Bitmoji, we are broadening the overall music experience even more by unlocking a tremendous new opportunity for artists and record labels to reach a highly engaged new audience on Snapchat and all other apps that integrate Bitmoji.”

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