Every February and September, Fashion Week rolls around to reinvent the rules of style. From lace revivals to classic silhouettes, sartorial shapes are served up as the ‘plat du jour’ season after season. Collaboration is king in the industry; from high street retailers such as H&M partnering with haute couture brands like Versace,1 or rap powerhouse Kanye West working to sportive styling with Adidas.2 So it’s no surprise that the UK fashion industry is worth a staggering £26bn3 and climbing.
High tech fashion
At Barclaycard, we want to give shoppers new ways to pay. Our bPay innovation lets consumers make contactless payments using wristbands, fobs and stickers. At the heart of bPay is a digital wallet that’s linked to a smartphone or can be accessed via an online hub, so it’s easy to manage money on-the-go. After the launch of bPay, we set ourselves a new challenge. We wanted fashion to take on a tech twist so we worked with two British brands to bring together the world of payments and the world of fashion. We launched a Contactless Jacket in collaboration with menswear brand Lyle & Scott, and our TOPSHOP X BPAY accessories collection.
What’s in it for him?
Making it easier for buyers to buy is part of what drives our innovations. So it was a natural evolution for us to work with a fashion brand so we could empower shoppers to pay, not only with a contactless card or wearable device, but with what they wear. Powered by bPay technology, the Contactless Jacket is the world’s first contactless jacket and marries chic convenience and effortless style. Built with a subtle contactless chip under the cuff of the right-hand sleeve; it’s convenient for busy boys to pay for a cup of coffee, pint at the pub or even a quick stop at the barber’s with a wave of the wrist. Designed to keep up with the modern customer, the Contactless Jacket is a product that’s at the heart of our cutting edge culture.
With the contactless payment limit now at £30, and contactless accepted at over 300,000 UK locations, most run-of-the-mill transactions can be made with this innovative jacket. And it’s not just limited to those chaps with a Barclaycard or who bank with Barclays. It’s open to all who have a UK Visa or MasterCard, debit or credit card. Gents just need to top up their digital wallet using the mobile app, online tool or to make it even easier they can just set up an auto top up.
What’s in it for her?
With Lyle & Scott at the helm of futuristic fashion, we were inspired to cater to the female market. So we partnered with high-street favourite Topshop and followed suit with our playful TOPSHOP X BPAY collection. Created with ladies in mind, this quirky, exciting collection offers dawn to dusk trendy spending. The accessories are designed with a bold Monster Fish print. Function meets fashion as the range consists of cute charms, wristbands, smartphone cases, stickers and fobs in multiple colourways with our bPay chip embedded.
Created with the same proposition as the Lyle & Scott jacket, these flirty accessories can be topped up on-the-go online, via the app or set to add funds whenever needed. Friday night cinema trips, satisfying fast-food cravings and coffee fixes require just a simple, stylish tap. It’s not just the handiness that makes these the next best thing. The top-up functionality of this new collection means that savvy spenders can jam jar money into these miniature game-changers so budgeting or keeping on top of spending is so simple.
The tide is turning
And we’re not the only ones remodeling the clothing industry. Adam Selman, costume designer for celebs like Rihanna,4 created a ‘little contactless dress’ with a contactless chip cleverly hidden in a bow. Katy Perry, Lily Allen, Rita Ora and a pile of other celebs are champions of fashion designer Henry Holland who, at his Spring/Summer 2015 show gave catwalk watchers contactless-enabled rings to buy the model’s clothes in real time. So maybe this year, touch and go tech might just take the world of couture by storm.