Now in full LFW mood, yesterday I started a 3-part report of the September 12 edition, with a look at the intersection between fashion and digital. As I said, I am interested in this crossover for its potential to open the doors to new ways of developing collections and new opportunities for sustainability.
This is very much the case with a brand like Honest by. Launched in January 2012, I was lucky enough to hear designer and founder Bruno Pieters speak at the Copenhagen Fashion Summit in May, and then meet him in person at Estethica in September. As a special guest, he had a dedicated room to showcase his collection, in which a large monitor immediately made it clear that a little technology was on the menu.
Indeed, that screen was used to explain Honest by.’s focal feature: communicating about the entire supply chain of its products and pricing. Honest by. is the first company in the world to share the full cost breakdown of its products as well as its design process and a full list of suppliers and materials used, from yarn and button origin to fabric and manufacturing details. This is all shared through a QR code – which in itself is a pretty simple device, but works well as a symbolic key to how technology and information can aid fashion and sustainability.
Honest by. was also born as a ‘digital brand’ from a retail point of view. I don’t know if this is still the case, but last year it was sold exclusively through its own e-boutique, which obviously offers a great user experience as well as all the information I just mentioned.
The full transparency is what makes Honest by. an unique label, but the collection actually needs no introduction. The clean shapes, bright palette and wonderful (digital) prints speak for themselves.
Honest by. collections are not designed solely by Bruno Pieters. The label hosts collaborations with designers to create an item, look or collection exclusively for the store (20% of the profit coming from these collections go to a charity chosen by the invited designer). The next names will be chosen from a group of nine Nordic design schools, whose students have been invited to apply to the from1000 Transparency Prize, jointly judged by Bruno Pieters and American fashion journalist Kristopher Arden-Houser.
Who is also the director of this ‘behind the scenes’ short. For good [visual/digital] measure: