When “smart closet” is mentioned, people tend to think of it in terms of the smart home technology we use for other devices and appliances.
We expect that the smart closet of the future will be something that is connected so that it can view the weather and your schedule to pick the right outfit for the day, and then it will select that outfit and extend it out from the inside of the closet.
Or maybe it is able to iron, fold or hang clothes. Perhaps you don’t envision it even being that automated – maybe it is more like the closet that we saw in Clueless – you have a digital library of all your outfits, and you’re able to manually or automatically pair items together, and see when you last wore something.
Hell, maybe the smart closet of the future can even double as a stylist – it can evaluate what you have through ratings or through frequency of wear, and it can order similar items. Or it can find items that would pair well with what you already own, and order them in your size to try out.
It could even alert you when you haven’t worn something in a while and recommend that you donate it (and make room for new items, of course). Perhaps your connected smart closet can link to the shopping cart of your favorite store and alert you when there are sales or when stock is low so that you can initiate an order (through your closet, of course).
All these incredible ideas, and we haven’t even talked about the mirror yet. What if it can project an outfit onto your body so you can see a full ensemble without having to go through trying everything on (and make a mighty mess – if you’re anything like me…clothes and shoes everywhere, every day). All of those possible futures for the closet sound great, but what, just what, if the closet of the future is something more.
Something so customizable that the fashion industry loses its mind over how accessible fashion becomes. What if the smart closet of the future is able to actually make your clothes for you?
Sound too futuristic, even for early adopters of smart home technology? Consider the 3D printer. Sure, these things are not yet feasible for consumption by the general public, but they are showing up in stores, including fashion stores.
There are stores out there right now that are using 3D printing to create custom clothing. It didn’t take computers that long to go from tech that only businesses could use (and had to store in a gigantic room) to tech that people can now fit into their pockets.
In the future, I see 3D printers as something that we can all have in our homes. Maybe we have one printer, and we buy the patterns from our favorite stores for printing. Or maybe each store sells a 3D printer that is loaded with all their styles, and you can purchase and print anything from their catalog.
No matter which path the smart closet of the future takes, I’m in.