Lauren Bowker: Fashion and Chemistry Bond To Create New Wearable Tech

More than thinking outside that proverbial box, London-based Lauren Bowker makes a new box entirely every time she creates anything. Her imagination knows no bounds and her diverse products range from clothing to chemical-related applications that offer the world both a way to use fashion as a reactive agent to the environment and to find new applications in other unexpected fields, such as engineering and medicine.


Lauren BowkerLauren Bowker

Her projects are brilliant and one-of-a-kind. They include creating bandages that detect alterations around the application site for the National Health Service and the first pollution-absorbing dye ever made. These were accomplished very early in her career, and her background in chemistry gives her a unique frame of reference within which to create. She is currently working on an ink that tracks electrical activity in the brain and utilizes changing colors to reflect emotions.


Magical FeathersMagical Feathers

The Unseen

Lauren refers to her label, The Unseen, as "a platform of magic, reality and change...set out to harness the extraordinary...It was a strategic plan so we can create products products that help people in their daily lives." Her environmentally-safe products include:bags, scarves, iPhone covers, wallets, conceptual jackets and bracelets that are sold in Selfridge's, a chain of British high-end department stores voted the 'best in the world.' She conducts her magic in a mourning dress with her team at her studio, PHNX, which focuses on using artistic expression to explore concepts such as health, science and disease.


Bowker in Mourning Dress  and TeamBowker in Mourning Dress and Team

Who is Lauren Bowker?

As a child, she was always fascinated with the unseen; the invisible, ghosts, x-rays and "working out how to manipulate nature." A brilliant woman of immense drive and curiosity, her interest, according to her, lie in transmitting "everything in the atmosphere we just can't see, as humans." This is a goal that is herculean in scope, but not out of range for a woman of her enormous talents.

She earned her bachelor's degree at Manchester Metropolitan University where she studied textiles and fought for the right to study chemistry, a battle she won due to her creation and acceptance of a chemical compound known as PdC12 , which absorbs air pollution.


Color-Changing InkColor-Changing Ink

Lauren Bowker received her Masters degree from the Royal College of Art in London. Her distinctive use of color-changing ink began with a project in which she used imagery to encourage children to stop smoking. She collaborated with scientists and came up wth the idea of dissecting cigarettes and testing to see if their components could change color.

Recent works and legacy

A fabric that can electronically detect emotions and a Svarowski gem head-piece, which visibly displays temperature changes in the brain, reveal the far-reaching developmental potential of her creations, which are so astounding that they have caught the attention of engineers and neurologists. Her process is a secret, but her goal is to change lives and the technology she has developed that tracks emotional states may one day be used to treat depression.


Swarovski Head PieceSwarovski Head Piece

Forward is the only direction  Lauren Bowker knows, and as Martha Stewart says: "That's a good thing."

How is the work of Lauren Bowker similar to that of a magician?

Closing thoughts on creativity:

The highest levels of perrformance come to people who are centered, intuitive, creative and reflective and who know to see a problem as an opportunity. ~ Deepak Chopra