This year saw Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Istanbul‘s first digital debut, providing a safer, more sustainable landscape for the industry after Istanbul’s previous season in March being cancelled due to the current pandemic. The event, which was held earlier this month within a virtual space, included panel discussions, podcasts, virtual showrooms and, of course, designers showcasing their latest collections. While most runways were shot prior to the event in various locations, including the city’s port and arts center, one innovative designer had other plans. Niyazi Erdogan, renowned architect turned international fashion designer who has designed collections for the likes of Tommy Hilfiger, Esprit and Pull & Bear, created and showcased his entire collection digitally using solely CLO, catching the attention from audiences around the globe and making ways as the very first designer in Turkey to create a 3D virtual fashion show.
Niyazi always had a strong passion for fashion design. After completing his studies in architecture and beginning to work in the field, he decided to listen to his heart and joined a summer school at Parsons in Paris. Following the completion of his fashion courses, Niyazi made it to the finals of the Turkish Young Fashion Designers Competition. From there on, Niyazi gained experience as a designer at a number of renowned international brands, has launched his own label and currently works as a consultant for local fashion brands and export companies. His aim as a designer is not only to be forward-looking and progressive in his designs, but also in the way of presenting them. As such, even before the pandemic Niyazi was searching for a more sustainable design process and was trying to come up with a way to reach more people in his design presentations. This originally initiated his interest to learn CLO. Once Mercedes-Benz announced that their event would be held entirely digital this year, he knew that his collection would be 3D.
After receiving training from our partner Masterkey Virtual Fashion, located in Istanbul, he began digitizing his designs, “It took around one month to complete my entire collection in 3D and another two weeks for rendering in collaboration with Masterkey.” Having a background in architecture, Nyazi was already familiar with thinking in 3D, “CLO is a very designer friendly software. The adaptation period was surprisingly quick and it was a really fun experience for me.” With CLO, Niyazi was able to work on his collection uninterrupted even during the peak of the epidemic and reduce possible health risks. Moreover, working with CLO enabled him to design more sustainably, saving numerous resources and giving him more control over his creative concept, “We had huge cost savings from garment sewing, to casting models, make-up, venue, lighting and sound costs. Using CLO gave us more control over the environment and how we present the collection. Before using CLO we had to produce many fits, controlled and revised samples – we had big time savings from this process as well.”
Working as a consultant for a number of international fashion brands Niyazi believes that implementing 3D will be increasingly necessary, “Manufacturing of physical samples is a costly process both for brands & exporters. We spend a big portion of our time in the fitting stage and it’s not just finishing there, we also need to work on variations with different garments, colors, and print options. I think brands will benefit greatly by moving to 3D in both costs and timing. My advice for brands, towards a more sustainable future in the fashion world, is to invest and to adapt in digital technologies.”
Find out more about Niyazi Erdogan and check out his collection here.