The expanding dress that protects your space

expanding dress 2It’s an issue that every person who uses public transport has faced at least once in their life, if not daily for everyday commuters: the lack of personal space and invasion of it by strangers.

Artist Kathleen McDermott suffered this problem one too many times and decided to come up with something that would solve it forever using her sense of style and brain to create something unique and surprising: a dress that expands to keep people away and protects your space. The designer is a student on a Masters course in Fine Art at the City University of Hong Kong.

The dress itself has built in sensor that can identify if a fellow commuter is coming too close for comfort and begins to slowly expand outwards like an umbrella using built-in plastic scaffolding. It is part of a project called “Urban Armour”, a collection which includes “playful electronic wearables for women”. Other pieces in the series include a pollution sensor scarf, the “Autofilter” which automatically covers the wearer’s face to defend against cigarette smoke or exhaust fumes and “Miss-My-Face” a hat with an inbuilt veil to protect your identity from CCTV footage.

McDermott stated that the ideas came to her for this collection when she began to look “for ways women could take more ownership over their personal space in public.”

expanding dress

Images courtesy of @KathleenMcDermott

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