2013-04-15

Co.Exist

If A Banker Is Lying, This Suit Will Suddenly Turn Transparent

A good solution to Wall Street malfeasance: What if their clothes had some literal transparency (and a lie detector) built in? A new design project is working on just that. Now we just have to get people to wear them.

The point of fashion may be to project an aspirational image of oneself: as confident, as powerful, as relevant. But a Dutch design team is using technology to subvert traditional ideas about what it means to dress up, by creating formal wear that reacts to your behavior. Past creations include dresses for women that become transparent as their heart rate increases, but a recent announcement revealed their first product for men: business suits for bankers that turn transparent when they lie.

Interestingly, the design firm behind the project, Studio Roosegaarde, is better known for its work on infrastructure, not clothes. We recently covered their "Smart Highway" project in the Netherlands, which will bring roads that light up at night with photoluminescent paint to one Dutch city this summer.

Dan Rooseagaarde, the principal designer behind the Intimacy clothing project explains it as follows, in a YouTube interview:

Technology is our second skin, our second language, the way we communicate, our experience our information. But why are we looking at these bloody iPhone screens all day. Can it not be more tactile, more intuitive? So we started to make, indeed, dresses as a second skin, which can change in transparency based on how excited you are.

The dresses use "smart e-foils" that detect an increase in heartbeat and turn the material transparent. The studio calls Intimacy 2.0—the second, more wearable version of the line which included leather as a material in the dresses—"daringly perfect to wear on the red carpet."

Intimacy 3.0 will enlist high-end fashion designers to develop products for men and women, including the lie-detecting suit. If it’s successful, perhaps government regulators will enforce the new get-up as part of a mandatory dress code at hedge funds and financial institutions.

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2 Comments

  • curiousdude

    What about the The Employee Polygraph Protection Act of 1988? Isn't this illegal?

  • Rashid Patch

     That act prevented employers from requiring polygraph tests. It would not affect government requiring polygraphs or "truth-detector" clothing, any more than it restricts government from mandating drug tests...