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Fashion tech products showcased at Alley NYC

By Dennis Clemente

Last September 12, Alley NYC was transformed into a mishmash of a trade fair’s open layout with cocktails all around, as it held coincided demonstrations of fashion tech products with Fashion Week just a few blocks up Midtown.

Acustom Apparel, Bauble Bar, Gilt Groupe, Hukkster, Makerbot and MaterialWrld founders and staff talked about their fashion tech products along with Buncee, not in the list of exhibitors, showing off its new content creation tool. It looked like a game-fied Pinterest but with interactivity functions.

Nearly 600 people crowded Alley NYC to watch the simultaneous demos going on.

Acustom Apparel is using new technology and a 3D body scanning process to make custom clothing better fitting, easier to purchase and less expensive than traditional methods. A 3-second scan allows you to download over 200,000 data points – combined with our proprietary digital bespoke technology. Acustom can reportedly make Bespoke jeans for under $200. Bespoke jeans usually cost $800-$1,200.

Acustom currently offers custom-fit men’s suits, shirts, blazers, jeans, winter coats, polo shirts, and khaki pants. But how do you get scanned in the first place?

Jamal Motlagh, CEO and co-founder, said Acustom is opening its new retail store at 330 West Broadway this Fall.
The ladies will have to wait.

For those who want to envision a dress they may want to buy or make or share with friends, Buncee showed how its interactive multimedia creation tools can do that.

Not exactly new but still a startup, Bauble Bar is an ecommerce start-up based in New York City “It is building a unique retail destination for fashion jewelry. It closed Series A funding in April 2012 and are backed by Accel Partners and Greycroft Partners.

No introduction needed but perhaps the most visible this year in various meetups, the Gilt Groupe is still the leader in terms of providing instant insider access to today’s top designer labels at up to 60% off.

This year, Gilt spent much of 2013 exploring the exciting world of personalization–releasing test roll-outs of personal sales to make offerings even more relevant to its eight million members. Gilt said feedback shows how Gilt members love personal sales

Hukkster demonstrated its online shopping tool–a bookmarklet that installs in your browser and optimizes your shopping experience online. As you visit all your favorite e-commerce sites you can “hukk” products to collect them in one place for immediate access and be informed via email or text when those select products go on sale. You will also find out about any site-wide promotions or coupon codes!

Perhaps fashionistas can make use of MakerBot the desktop 3D printing service that must be like how sawing machines inspired many back in the day. Founded in 2009, MakerBot has reportedly built the largest installed base of desktop 3D printers sold to innovative and industry-leading customers worldwide

Material Wrld is all about luxury resale. Founded in 2012 by experienced online fashion professionals who love to shop, Material Wrld has been featured in many fashion publications, clearly a win for them in terms of getting the necessary media mileage.

DEMO’s Erick Schonfeld talks about rise of mobile, demise of PC

By Dennis Clemente

Alley NYC Week’s informal fireside chat series in midtown Manhattan last March 1 gave New York techies a good reason to dash off for a quick lunch with guest Erick Schonfeld, the technology journalist who is also the executive producer of DEMO (thedemo.com) and partner of Bmuse (bmuse.com).

“The PC era is over,” he declares without much fanfare, as insiders have been saying this since last year. It was simply a preamble for what he would say next: “Mobile is a big market for anyone.”

erick schonfeld

Schonfeld talked about the “accelerated path” of mobile, saying 58 percent of developers are looking into developing for phones and tablets, more so even than game consoles. If he were to decide what Apple should do next, he intimidated how he “would go all the way.”

Asked about iOS vs Android, he acknowledged how there are more Android phone users from a business point of view and how “Apple doesn’t have an answer for cheap phones,” hinting at robust sales of other smartphones made of inexpensive materials (read: plastic).

Schonfeld thinks Nokia Lumia has “a much nicer hardware than the Nexus, although it could be three years too late.”

DEMO holds conferences worldwide, focusing on emerging technologies and new product innovations. It has served as launch pad events for companies such as E*Trade and Salesforce, helping them to secure venture funding, establish critical business relations and influence early adopters.

Bmuse is a product incubator in New York City seeking various ways to reimagine our media landscape.

The attentive audience consisted of established founders like Mat Gaver whose company, justecho.com, develops mobile apps for FORTUNE 500 companies as well as new founders like Sonam Dhingra of convocast.com, whose much-anticipated approach to sharing fun times and memories online should be one to watch.

The fireside chat was hosted Alley NYC, a New York tech hub and co-working space which holds a regular series featuring tech’s thought leaders, investors and entrepreneurs.

Schonfeld came to the short talk as TechCrunch’s previous editor in chief where he helped to program the Disrupt conferences and CrunchUps. He was also the Editor-at-Large for Business 2.0 magazine where he wrote stories and ran its main blog, The Next Net. He also launched an online video series with CNN Money and hosted regular panels and conferences of industry luminaries.

Schonfeld started his career at FORTUNE magazine in 1993. He appears regularly on CNBC, CNN and NY1 aside from being a frequent speaker at industry conferences.