London is the place to be in terms of the space where fashion meets technology. Over the past 18 months I have been heavily involved with following what is happening in the two great loves of my life, fashion and tech.
A regular haunt for me is Decoded London meetings, where young start ups present their ideas to industry, investors and mentors, and where Liz Bacelar, the owner and very able founder of Decoded, organizes industry meet ups, more often than not around Google Campus and Shoreditch.
One of the start ups presenting was WonderLuk.com. WonderLuk is part of the kick back against the beigeing of the world, and offers confident, style – conscious women the chance to design their own jewellery, and have it printed in 3D form. The result is an intreging appproach to design, putting the customer at the epicentre of creativity, making jewellery totally unique to the person who designed it. In a world of blandness and same as, there is no doubt that WonderLuk will have a strong following, in particular because the experience is so seductive. You choose want you would like, it gets printed and then it arrives to you 2 weeks later.
Equally magnetic is the Co- Founder and CEO Roberta Lucca, a woman who does not set herself limits. “We’re entering an era in which customisation, co-creation and made locally are becoming extremely valuable to the modern consumer. The fashion value chain hasn’t caught up with these demands yet…we love empowering wormen to stand out, and celebrate their individuality.” Lucca, a Brazillian powerhouse of energy, is a enterpreneur one automatically believes will succeed due to their drive and innovation.
There is a trend away from the fast turnnover, must have it now then throw it out mentality. This, coupled with a desire to please oneself and not the crowd, is becoming apparent in “slow” concepts, with a desire for luxury and indivuduallity. Hand made goods taking weeks to complete are rising. Craftsmanship is rare and yet highly sought after. Who wants to wear a dress repeated 6 times at the same party? The green issues and the failing of many large companies to embrace transparent and ethical corporate social responsibility is all part of this movement away from mass production. Last years tragic and avoidable accident in the Bangeldesh factory which left 1,100 people dead has had a knock on effect with people wanting to know more about where their clothes are coming from and how. If clothes are cheap and fast, there is usually someone paying the price. WonderLuk is the antithesis of this mentality and production.
At present, all WonderLuk products are made from sintered nylon and come in a range of different finishes, and there are plans to include other materials such as titanium, stainless steel and silver. The launch range includes bracelets, brooches, necklaces, rings, earrings and phone cases. Architects and product designers worked together to design the range. I can see WonderLuk developing the design possibilities to be less product design and more fashion, and collaborations with existing fashion jewellery designers would help and lead the customers to create incredible, made-to-order pieces.
This is a brilliant new concept, and I think the timing is perfect. We will be seeing a great deal more of 3D printing in our lives and I am hopeful that this start up will braze a trail for individually designed pieces of jewellery. The company mantra is “Don’t blend in. Ever.” And so say all of us.
You can check out the WonderLuk here: wonderluk.com