Designers Falguni and Shane Peacock's collaboration with IBM brings together fashion — and artificial intelligence

Falguni and Shane Peacock designed a collection with the help of AI. Wonder how it turned out? Have a look here:

Ankita Maneck May 28, 2017 17:27:12 IST
Designers Falguni and Shane Peacock's collaboration with IBM brings together fashion — and artificial intelligence

There are a very few tech-enabled wardrobes that are more iconic and memorable than Cher Horowitz' in Clueless.

Her tech savvy wardrobe helped her choose what to wear each day. Here's a look:

And then there was Jane and Judy Jetsons' futuristic fashion in The Jetsons that could give us all some #TechGoals.

Cut to 2017, and fashion houses are still trying to marry artificial intelligence with fashion. This may seem like a space age concept that would take years to pan out, but there are pioneering things being done in the field to remedy that.

"There are AI systems today that compose music, write stories, and create artwork that no one can tell is machine-generated. So fashion design is surely not beyond AI's capabilities,” says Pedro Domingos, author of The Master Algorithm. “What will likely happen, however, is not that AI will completely replace designers, but will become an indispensable tool for them. Fashion designers armed with AIs will be similarly able to come up with radical new ideas: AI will amplify their creativity rather than replace it," reasons Domingos.

Domigos definitely got it right — artificial intelligence is creeping its way into fashion, in India. A case in point is designers Falguni and Shane Peacock's collaboration with IBM, which has led to a collection being created with the help of an AI called Watson.

Falguni and Shane have not shied away from experimentation since the inception of their fashion house thirteen years ago in 2004. Their designs, which are a fusion of Indian colours and sensibilities with a western silhouette have had fans in the likes of Alia Bhatt, Sonam Kapoor, and international stars like Beyonce, Rihanna, Katy Perry, among others.

For their new three-piece collection, the duo decided to experiment with IBM's new artificial intelligence programme, IBM Watson. IBM Watson is a cognitive system enabling a new partnership between people and computers. The supercomputer or AI has numerous applications, and as mentioned by Domingos, one of them can be aiding fashion designers.

The AI helped the fashion duo create their new collection called Future of Bollywood Fashion by analysing around 600,000 publicly available historical fashion runway images for the past decade (2006-2017) spanning the 'Big Four' fashion weeks (London, Paris, Milan, New York). In order to understand Bollywood fashion trends, IBM Watson analysed close to 5,000 Bollywood celebrity images from various social media sites, besides 3,000 fashion-related images from the history of Bollywood in the form of Bollywood movie posters across 4 decades, the 1970s, 80s, 90s and 2000+. The first data source is representative of high-end couture and the second one is more indicative of Bollywood-centric fashion across the years.

They came up with the dominant colour palette which helped them design their collection: raisin black, Yankees blue and light grey.

Sriram Raghavan, director, India Research Labs, who is responsible creating the AI said, "Fashion is highly visual and has its own nuances; for example when understanding natural images, we found that humans use only around 10-20 colour terms. However, once we moved to the domain of fashion, there were thousands of colours. We have developed deep-learning capabilities that can understand a fashion image and identify multiple key aspects that constitute it. Using these tools we were able to analyse the collection of fashion images to ascertain popular and trending colours for every season over a decade, and then predict the trending colours for the next season."

Here are the three pieces from the collection ad seen on the ramo, along with showstopper Pooja Hegde:

Here's the three pieces from the collection they came up with the showstopper Pooja Hegde:

Designers Falguni and Shane Peacocks collaboration with IBM brings together fashion  and artificial intelligence

Model walking the ramp in Falguni Shane Peacock at the India Cloud Forum, 2017

Designers Falguni and Shane Peacocks collaboration with IBM brings together fashion  and artificial intelligence

Model walking the ramp in Falguni Shane Peacock at the India Cloud Forum, 2017

Designers Falguni and Shane Peacocks collaboration with IBM brings together fashion  and artificial intelligence

Pooja Hegde wearing Falguni Shane Peacock creation designed for IBM Watson at the India Cloud Forum

Designers Falguni and Shane Peacocks collaboration with IBM brings together fashion  and artificial intelligence

Pooja Hegde, Falguni & Shane Peacock with Sriram Raghavan- Director IBM Research at the India Cloud Forum 2017

This is not the only use of AI and fashion though. Sriram Raghavan, Director, India Research Labs, who is responsible creating the AI said, "IBM Watson can also be used to maximize the shopping experience. You can help the buyer get the same experience they get at a high end store of a customised shopping experience where you get personal attention."

Look's like we will all have Cher's competised closet in a few years time.

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