Discovering the Rhyme & Reason: an interview with Mary Huang

A few weeks ago I came across the beautiful works of designer Mary Huang, a lady who is taking the idea of Fashionology and running with it! She is the creator of Rhyme & Reason, a captivating range of illuminated knitwear and dresses (shown in the picture below) and I decided to contact her to find out more.

Where did you get the idea for Rhyme & Reason?

I have a lot of different interests in design, technology, fashion, costume design, and I wanted to combine them into one thing. Combining fashion and electronics in a beautiful and wearable way just seemed to make sense.

Did you start the label yourself or do you have a team behind you?

I’m just starting right now, so it’s basically just me. I do have friends I collaborate with projects on.

Your pieces have a technical function (the Rhyme & Reason scarf can double as a lamp) as well a fashionable edge; do you think that “wearable technology” is the future of fashion?

Wearable technology as implying the inclusion of electronics into clothing is only one aspect of the possibilities of combining fashion design and technology. It certainly opens up possibilities for what we can achieve in fashion.

We can create fashion that changes contexts, responds to sensors and data and that is networked to mobile communication; there is a huge variety of ideas and many people are doing interesting work exploring these things.

scarf_light_maryhuang

I don’t think “wearable technology” is the future of fashion in the sense that in the future everyone will be wearing shirts with embedded sensors. I think that wearable technology definitely contributes towards interesting innovations in fashion.

The irony is that, as the design and technologies are increasingly refined, the goal is seamlessness between tech and the fashion and thus, there will be no distinction of work being “wearable tech”… it will simply just be fashion.

What is the latest project that you have been working on?

Recently I worked with fellow designer Jennifer Kay on an experimental design for wearable wind-power generation called Dandelion (below).

I am currently doing a series of 7 lighted pieces for a collaboration with the Indelible Dance Company. The dance performance will be about the Big Bang and the formation of the cosmos and will be at the end of September in Brooklyn, NY.

I also have sound reactive modules for the LED dresses in development which I’m looking forward to because the experience of wearing them is really engaging.

Where can we purchase your pieces and what sort of prices can we expect?

The lighted dresses are all individually made, bespoke pieces right now, so they range between $1200 and $2500.

I’m working on ready-to-wear, so to speak, although it will be different in a way from how ready-to-wear is usually done and would be integrated in a web store.

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With thanks to Mary Huang

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