Wear It Well – Fashion Mashes Up With Health At #CES2014

imageMadame Onassis got nothing on you, Rod Stewart complimented in his hit You Wear It Well in 1972. Now we can all wear it well, based on the fashion-meets-health-mashups at the 2014 Consumer Electronics Show.

Several events underline this observation at the CES this year:

– Fitbit has signed up Tory Burch to put her mark accessorizing the company’s activity trackers

– The CSR Bluetooth smart pendant was designed with the chic jeweler Cellini; the device can receive alerts from an iPhone (think: medication adherence, or a message from mom in Florida). This is featured in the first photo.

– Netatmo’s June bracelet launched which tracks UV rays in the outdoors, seen in the second photo.

– Representatives from The Council of Fashion Designers (CFDA) sat with executives from Sony to announce collaboration around wearable technology and fashion.

image[As an aside, CFDA has been very visible in health issues for many years, supporting breast cancer, HIV/AIDS, and advocacy efforts. ]

These projects embody what Sonny Vu, founder of Misfit Wearables’ Shine tracker, told me in the Making Sense of Sensors report: “Put a sensor in a simple white t-shirt,” and people will use them.

Health Populi’s Hot Points: The newest smartwatches coming out of CES2014 are bulky, black, and cumbersome – function-rich, perhaps, but fashionistas and every day people (particularly women) won’t be rushing to wear them. Of course, these are generally not designed for women in the mass middle of the population curve.

The influx of fashion designers and user-centered design ethos should help to make health-tracking fit into our lives, and not compel “us” to fit into the bulky hard-edged shiny new things.

imageWhat’s intriguing me for the next wave, coming in a year or two, is how fashion will meet device design, then meeting up with retail channels. Tory Burch has her own stores, of course. But think about Target, which has a long and successful history with many designers, like Missoni, Liberty of London, and Philip Lim. Liberty launched its Nike shoe collection last year. Why not throw in a Reflx Labs-sensored orthotic to make it track, or build me a Missoni zigzag cover for my activity tracker, channeled through Target?

Health is where we live, work, play….and shop.

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