Fashion design in cultural and creative industries
The cultural and creative industries facilitate the production of quality goods by supporting brand creation in the design industry; in which process, culture, fine art, and creativity are incorporated. In short, the cultural and creative industries produce creative design products on the basis of rich cultural heritage and artistic styles, prompting consumers to approve the brands as well as the content of quality products. Therefore, consumers are likely to purchase the goods because of the emotional resonance they experience (Wu 2007). The development of fashion is aligned with mainstream social developments, and represents a refined and innovative lifestyle, rather than the simple pursuit of luxury (Lin et al. 2012). The use of culture to establish market differentiation is an advantage that traditional industries can adopt; of all traditional industries, fashion industry is the most appropriate one to facilitate the development of fashionable lifestyles to satisfy public need of cultural consumption. For example, Taiwan is a multicultural and multiethnic country suitable for producing innovative and creative products. Effective integration of diversified local cultural characteristics into clothing styles facilitates developing new design elements on the basis of existing cultural inheritance. Chen and Chen (2011) pointed out, this practice improves design styles through innovation, assists with the development of the fashion industry by finding new opportunities, and increases the added-value of products.
Cultural elements incorporated in design
The most notable difference between cultural products and other products is cultural connotation. Specifically, cultural products draw upon various cultural elements as their creative source and facilitate the interpretation of distinctive meanings or appreciation of the culture. Furthermore, cultural and creative products are mass-produced commodities, rather than luxury goods (Yeh 2006). Cultural and creative products that improve lifestyle through product design are products that have cultural meaning; designers infuse cultural, historical, and ethnic elements into their products to increase product value. Furthermore, consumers are able to reacquaint themselves with historical or lifestyle culture through these products, while simultaneously being involved in the passing-down of culture. The emphasis of cultural values and local features has already become a key aspect of the product development process (Gobe 2009; Koike 1992; Yeh 2006; Hsu and Hsieh 2009).
When individuals experience positive emotions, both the left and right hemispheres of the brain are activated. Sensory and cognitive studies on psychological and physical sensations, and the subsequent quantification of sensory perceptions, have indicated that product designers must consider psychological and physiological sensations (Berridge 2003; Lin 2003). Ashby and Johnson (2003) have also proposed the theory of product personality, which suggests that products possess physiological (e.g., features that meets the primary purposed of the design, functions, and other features) and psychological (e.g., personality and usability) dimensions. Notably, personality includes product aesthetics, associations, and perception conditions, whereas usability concerns consumer interaction. Overall, products possess two layers of meaning: the practical layer manages function and performance, and the other layer manages symbols, identification and emotions. Herein, attractiveness, beauty, and creativity are psychology qualities of products, and delicacy and engineering are physiological qualities of products. If a product possesses both functional (physiological) qualities and emotionally appealing psychological qualities, this product can satisfy consumers in both functional and emotional dimensions; moreover, if a product possesses cultural connotations in addition to the qualities of attractiveness, beauty, creativity, delicacy, and engineering, it can also be referred to as a quality good (Pogrebin and Trebay 2015; Yen et al. 2012, 2014a, b).
Elements of fashion design
An analysis of fashion design elements is critical in the examination of clothing styles, including ideas and concepts, creativity, material, color, form and construction, techniques, human elements, accessories, elements, and time. The basic presentation elements of clothing are lines, material, and color, of which in-depth understanding and effective usage are required for creating superior designs (Huang 2015; Jung 2011). In addition to satisfying the material needs of consumers, clothing should also echo their psychological reactions. Furthermore, fashion trends can be viewed as the understanding and acceptance of certain ideas in a group; thus, clothing is not only a reflection of daily ideologies, but also a creative product that demonstrates cultural style. Because the creation of contemporary clothing design aesthetics must integrate function, design content, and technical considerations, a designer should aim to create products that satisfy the demands of functionality in the physiological dimension and the demands of aesthetically appealing shapes in the dimension of psychology, so that the products can not only meet basic demands of usability, but also remonstrate added values such as desire-fulfilling pleasant use experience (Fornell and Larcker 1981; Jung 2011).
The basic composition of clothing includes material, structure, form, and function. Material is the framework of a clothing system; specifically, it effects change in the structure and form of clothing. Certain materials can even be interacting with consumer senses directly and become a form of the product. Structure refers to the result of interconnection and mutually interaction between elements in the system, or the method of connection between diverse materials. Comprising color, line, and shape, form is the appearance of clothing developed on the basis of the combination of material and structure. Form can be considered a symbol or message. Finally, the function of clothing refers not only to an article’s usage function, but also to the value of interaction between individuals and clothing in social relationships (Verganti 2013). Thus, the composition of clothing can be divided into two levels: the formal and technical level, and the cultural connotation level. In design, cultural connotation is a basic element of clothing, whereas form and technique are elements that help convey cultural connotations (Cao 2011).