Forget the Blue/Black White/Gold dress… Adobe’s new dress can be anything you want it to be!
While Adobe’s been known primarily for its cutting-edge creatively aligned software suites, the company surprised attendees at the 2023 Adobe MAX conference with a taste of something it was working on in secret. A presenter walked on stage in a seemingly normal dress, only to shock viewers as the dress suddenly went from matte white to reflective. Individual elements in the dress then changed colors, creating unique patterns that allowed its wearer to effectively alter their attire in real-time. Dubbed Project Primrose, this interactive dress uses ‘Reflective Light-Diffuser Modules’ to create Non-Emissive Flexible Display Systems.
Although currently just unveiled as a product showcase, it isn’t entirely clear if Primrose plans on being available to developers or even consumers anytime soon. The project is more of a proof of concept, displaying a new way to preview and prototype designs and patterns in real time. “Project Primrose, displayed at MAX as an interactive dress, makes this possible with wearable and flexible, non-emissive textiles which allow an entire surface to display content created with Adobe Firefly, Adobe After Effects, Adobe Stock, and Adobe Illustrator,” says the Adobe Communications Team. By incorporating this technology into various surfaces like clothing, furniture, and more, designers can explore endless possibilities in terms of style. For instance, individuals can easily download and ‘wear’ the latest designs from their favorite designers.
The system developed by Adobe utilizes reflective-backed polymer-dispersed liquid crystal (PDLC), an electroactive substance that is often employed in smart window technology. This energy-efficient and non-emissive material can be easily customized into various shapes and has the ability to dynamically scatter light, going beyond what e-ink and other technologies have to offer.
Speaking of electronic ink, this isn’t the first time we’ve seen dynamic color-changing designs before. At CES 2022, BMW displayed the iX Flow Concept that could change colors in real time. The technology dates back as early as 2017, when Sony displayed the e-ink-powered FES watch that could similarly change its design. What Adobe’s done is different in two notable ways – for starters, it ditches electronic ink or conventional displays for something reflective and more eye-catching. Secondly, it ties this technology in with its own creative software, showcasing how the industry will empower designers in the future to create on new surfaces… quite literally!