Preview: Fast Fabrication

06 : 03 : 2017 Automated : Reebok : Manufacturing

Global – A burgeoning revolution in robotics is enabling apparel and footwear brands to use automation in unprecedented ways.

  • In the US, up to 45% of the activities workers are paid to perform can be automated by adapting available technologies, according to McKinsey
  • The rise of automation is driving innovation in materials and product performance, and eliminating unethical working practices
The Liquid Factory by Reebok, US The Liquid Factory by Reebok, US
The Liquid Factory by Reebok, US The Liquid Factory by Reebok, US
SewBo, US SewBo, US
Speedfactory by Adidas, Germany Speedfactory by Adidas, Germany

To some, the widespread adoption of automated systems in fashion is inevitable and should be welcomed if it helps to eliminate unethical working practices. ‘The industry has proven time and time again that it is unable to be responsible,’ Jonathan Zornow, inventor and founder of robotic sewing machine SewBo, tells LS:N Global.

From an environmental standpoint, automated machinery is often a more sustainable option than manual labour, as its higher level of precision and accuracy ensures less fabric is wasted. Adidas’ Speedfactory uses locally sourced raw materials such as plastic, fibres and adhesives, which are machine-knitted and bonded together to create new fabrics and products.

The Big Picture

Read our Fast Fabrication microtrend to learn more about the impact of automation on the fashion and footwear sectors.

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