How a Hong Kong-based digital consultancy for the denim industry and an Australian startup,founded by ex-Canon image scientists are radically changing the world of denim fabric digitisation. Read on to learn more.
In less than a year, technology adoption for digital or digitally-enabled garment design has taken a quantum leap within the fashion industry. High-street brands such as Levi’s, H&M, and Wrangler are rapidly moving to online channels and conceptualising entire product lines in digitally enabled ecosystems.
But what about the fabric mills behind these household names?
Confronting Denim’s Big Footprint: Sampling
In the denim industry, waste is present at all levels – from design, production, delivery and, ultimately, consumption. While pre-consumer textile waste, which includes samples, falls pale compared to post-consumer waste, unused raw fabric yardage is often discarded or incinerated despite being perfectly usable.
Denim fabric samples, which are bundled in panels of four or more washed fabric and swatch cards, are enough to make initial design decisions. But to create full-sized sample garments, mills may end up sparing hundreds of yards and only using some to make a sample garment with a few duplicates. The rest often goes to waste.
A massive part of the problem that leads vast amounts of fabric to the landfill or incinerator is a lack of strategic decision-making.
The only way out would be to adopt a mature digital solution that allows fabric mills to provide the supply chain and brands with a single source of digital truth for all fabric-related decision-making.
Unfolding the Digital Denim Supply Chain
Collaboration technologies are at the heart of reshaping modern denim manufacturing. However, given the product development time frames, cut-throat competition, and low-profit margins, investing in new technology may seem like a distant dream or a cost burden. And for most denim mills, it’s both.
Product design and development, before the pandemic, has always been a slow-moving process. Between requests on initial samples, approvals and alterations, the back and forth can take weeks of waiting.
Today, the lack of accurate, high-quality digital fabrics limits brands’ abilities to fast-track product development with digital tools.
But there is a way out of this dilemma.
What if your fabric mills were able to digitise their fabrics in-house in a fast, easy, affordable and accurate way?
A solution that enables a better digital product development process with less waste, less time, and greater transparency is finally here.
Introducing INDIKON – A Cloud-based Image Processing Technology Made for Denim fabrics
Think Vizoo, but built explicitly for denim. INDIKON is created in collaboration between Bandicoot Image Sciences, Sydney based tech startup that specialises in digitising materials, and INQOVA, a digital consultancy for the denim industry based in Hong Kong.
Together they are bringing fabric digitisation into the mill. You are looking at the ability to sample digital fabrics immediately from mills worldwide and get materials straight into your favourite 3D software.
Now, mills can share their fabric creations with designers and buyers instantly. And they can make adjustments to countless fabrics digitally at a moment’s notice — getting rid of an enormous amount of material waste and logistical pollution.
The solution outputs 4K 3D fabric files that are compatible with Swatchbook, Material Exchange,and other distribution platforms; CLO3D, Browzwear, Optitex, and other 3D fashion design solutions. In collaboration with Jeanologia and other players in the denim laundry space, they are looking to develop better digital fabrics for better digital laundry.
INDIKON enables denim mills to build a better digital product development lifecycle to ultimately reduce waste, time, and logistical pollution that come with physical sampling.
Not quite sure what we mean?
See it for yourself – head over to indikon.co/ to download a sample set of 3D fabrics to see the potential this has to bring designers closer to suppliers with accurate, high-quality 3D materials.