Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Gowns Made Of the Sunlight, Moonbeams & Sky

Do you know which story these garments are inspired by? It's "Peau d'Ane" or "Donkeyskin".

And one clever designer, Valerie Lamontagne, has not only created three dresses inspired by the fairy tale but she's created them in such a way that they capture the essence of sky, sun and moon - literally. She calls them 'climate-reactive' dresses.

Each garment responds, in real time, to a particular aspect of the weather, thanks to a little tech-couture.

Here's a description of each from

Lamontagne gamely rises to the princess’s challenge*. Her floaty “Sky Dress,” made of pocketed parachute fabric, contains 14 tiny fans that are linked to a weather station. The packets of air expand and contract in response to variations in wind speed and direction.

The “Moon Dress,” designed to reflect the “lyrical intensity of the moon,” according to Lamontagne, features 14 glowing flowers that change color according to the phase of the moon.

And for the princess’s third task, to create a dress as radiant as the sun, Lamontagne interlaces fabric with conductive threads that pipe electricity through a series of circuits. Reacting to fluctuations in ultraviolet and solar radiation, the 128 LEDs on the “Sun Dress” flicker on and off, mimicking the shifting intensity of the sun.

How cool is that?

You can find out more about the materials and tech at Ms. Lamontagne's website HERE.

* In order to stave off her father's advances and delay nuptial plans, the princess asks for three impossible-to-make dresses. Unfortunately he also 'rises to the challenge'. It's then that the familiar donkeyskin is asked for, provided then used as a means to enable escape.

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