Urban Armor, New Twist in Clothes

kwe personal space dress

Urban Armor. Who would have thought — clothes that are about more than dressing as in self defense, pollution protection, personal privacy and more. Wearable tech — be it watches with internet a la Dick Tracy, Google Glass, and more are very much in the news. But the newest wrinkle is Urban Armor by Tokyo based, 27 year old New York artist Kathleen McDermott. Her signature piece, described in the Wall Street Journal is a dress said to “reclaim personal space by expanding several inches when sensors detect another person is standing too close”. The dress inflates while someone stands as close as 15 inches. Some have described a special benefit of the dress of “avoiding unwanted sexual advances”. Hmmm. It’s only in prototype now, along with other projects McDermott developed for her master’s of fine arts degree at City University of Hong Kong.  Other clothing items she has created include the “autofilter”, a scarf that inflates to protect from pollution and “miss my face” a hat and veil lined with infrared lights to hide a person’s face when viewed on close circuit security systems. Interested in making your own dress, tapping into her know how? Instructions are on her website.


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