- Rebecca Minkoff debuted her new children’s collection, Little Minkoff, at her NYFW Spring 2020 presentation.
- Little Minkoff uses A.I. technology to cut fabric, ink, and water wastes to create eco-friendly and sustainable clothing.
- The technology that Minkoff uses can potentially be the future of fashion across all brands.
- Visit Insider’s homepage for more stories.
Originally known for her statement leather handbags, Rebecca Minkoff has now developed into a global lifestyle brand ranging from apparel to footwear to accessories. With 15 years into the business and over 900 stores worldwide, Minkoff has always been an early adopter of technology: from smart dressing rooms to smart handbags, and even being the first to stream her runway show.
The Spring 2020 presentation theme was “Rebirth,” an exploration of all stages of womanhood. A mother of three, the designer is launching Little Minkoff, a children’s brand that uses technology and artificial intelligence to create an eco-friendly, sustainable line.
We went to the presentation to speak to designer Rebecca Minkoff and Uri Minkoff – her brother, co-founder, and CEO of the label – to discover more about the technology that’s changing the future of the industry. Here’s what we learned.
Babies and teens joined the stage with models for Rebecca Minkoff’s New York Fashion Week collections. Complete with a stroller, park benches, and a picnic, the set design painted a colourful story on the journey of womanhood.
“Rebirth,” the theme of the ready-to-wear collection, gave a nod to the ’70s with easy sleeves and soft, feminine dresses.
In addition to her ready-to-wear collection, the designer also debuted Little Minkoff, a children’s line that is unisex, eco-friendly, and sustainable.
Little Minkoff partnered with Resonance Companies, a tech company that specialises in developing software for fashion brands. Together, they created an inventory system that limits waste by only going into production after a customer has ordered an item.
Typically, brands have to produce hundreds of batches to sell. With this process, not only are fewer fabrics being thrown out, but only a fraction of water and 40% less ink is also being used during production.
All the materials used for Little Minkoff are natural, sustainable, and biodegradable. “This is a huge leap,” co-founder and CEO Uri Minkoff told Insider. “I don’t think any other brands have this level of sophistication that we have with us today.”
Once a customer places an order, the product is made and received within six to eight days. The process serves as a digital footprint for the retailer, with the ability to trace each step of production and delivery — including the fabrics used, the workers, and the customers.
The A.I. system also helps things run smoothly by keeping track of orders and pre-printing trim-marks on the fabrics for the workers to follow. The real challenge is creating original designs with a limited number of natural fibres that are sustainable and eco-friendly.
Many of the brand’s best-sellers, like the moto jacket and denim goods, can’t be recreated for the children’s line. The solution is finding alternative materials, like jersey knit, that are natural and sustainable.
Rebecca Minkoff plans to incorporate this new technology into the ready-to-wear collection as well, starting with dresses.
The designer also plans to create more products for pregnant and nursing mothers. A tote-bag collaboration with Medela, a breast-pump company, is in the future for Fall 2020.
With fast-fashion giants like Zara and H&M dominating the clothing market worldwide, technological leaps such as these could be the answer to sustainability and eco-friendly production in a notoriously wasteful industry.
- Read more:
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- 28 photos show the unglamorous side of New York Fashion Week
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