Photochromia, The Crated, Print All Over Me, Fashion, Sunlight, Clothing

The Hypercolor of Tomorrow: Chameleon Clothes Change Patterns in Sunlight

Two innovative New York City design teams have joined forces to create a new line of apparel that changes pattern when exposed to sunlight. The collaborators, Print All Over Me and The Crated, have been working on the project (aptly named Photochromia) for two years before unveiling their work this week to the public via Kickstarter.

Photochromia, The Crated, Print All Over Me, Fashion, Sunlight, Clothing
The Crated

“Let’s create a world full of enchanted objects rather than backlit screens.”

-Maddy Maxey, Head of Technology at The Crated

Using light-sensitive ink, the designers have produced a line of clothing which will change appearance when exposed to the UV rays of the sun.

Photochromia, The Crated, Print All Over Me, Fashion, Sunlight, Clothing

Though this phenomenon — known as photochromism, or the ability to change appearance in response to sunlight — has been studied for more than 150 years, this collection marks its first practical application to clothing for the public.

It differs somewhat from Hypercolor, the early ’90s clothing line with thermochromic pigments that changed colors depending on the temperature. Temperature is less a factor with photochromism — all you need is light, not heat.

Photochromia, The Crated, Print All Over Me, Fashion, Sunlight, Clothing
Print All Over Me

“The transition, while aesthetically pleasing, is also a literal reminder that what we wear and how we wear it are affected by our environment.”

– Jesse Finklestein, co-founder of Print All Over Me

If you want to join the shapeshifting fashion revolution, you can buy a photochromic hat, backpack, or sweats here. All orders are created by hand at Print All Over Me’s facility outside Shanghai which guarantees no sweatshop labor: all the employees work full-time and get full healthcare.

One thing is certain: these sartorial savants are ones to watch. With an opening act like this, the future of Photochromia looks bright.