Latest

MAKE|USE for Local Wisdom

 

MAKEUSE is a research project exploring user modifiable zero waste fashion garments. Developed as part of Local Wisdom, this project provides stages of intervention accessible to both Makers and Users of fashion. All too often users are merely passive consumers, purchasing and discarding the garments that build their wardrobe with little opportunity to engage with a richer understanding of the garments role in their lives. Website to come.

Cropped T Trouser Dress V2 Kimono T Dress V3 Dress V1 Kimono T Pattern Trouser Pattern Dress Pattern Cropped T pattern

Fab8NZ!!

Image
As you may know, we (Massey University, where I work) are starting Australasia’s first fab lab in association with MIT in the states. We are also hosting the annual fab lab meeting (for a week) and a public symposium on digital fabrication at the Michael Fowler Centre on the 27th.
Why should you be interested? Because of this! Stay ahead of the fashion curve :)
It will be a really amazing event. There are experts from all over the world talking about subjects from 3D printing functional human organs to printing buildings and the day will be hosted by Professor Neil Gershenfeld – head of the Centre for Bits and Atoms at MIT and leader of the fab lab movement. You may have seen Neil’s TED talk on Fab Labs. http://www.ted.com/talks/neil_gershenfeld_on_fab_labs.html
If you are interested in starting a fab lab, then you should come for the full week, where we will be looking at best practices, workshops and presentations from all over the world!
There is more info on www.fab8nz.com
This is a really amazing opportunity, and one that does not (and will not) happen in NZ very often!
It’s $150 for for the day, including lunch and coffee breaks, which is an amazing bargain considering the list of speakers. Earlybird registrations ends on the 30th July – so be quick!!
Thanks!

New Old Shoes

I had my old desert boots re-soled last week. They are made by McKinlays of Dunedin in the South Island, New Zealand. I’ve owned them since about 2009 and wore them almost daily since I got them. I got them because they are made in NZ, the design is timeless and they are easily repaired. When I bought them, the sales woman said that the gum sole would last forever, and that the upper would perish before the soles. She was wrong, but they still lasted for many cold and wet Wellington winters and the hot tarmac of quite a few summers (I don’t really do sandals… So roast my way through NZ summer in the same shoes I wear in winter…). By the end of last winter the gum sole had wore right through to the midsole on the right shoe and almost through on the left. The leather upper toe box was crushed and worn out quite a bit due to my (now remedied) behaviour of pattern cutting on the floor on my knees (which also leads to holes in the knees of my jeans). In wet weather I got wet feet, so after a few weeks enduring this I pulled out an old pair of knee high boots, cut the calves off them and voila! Ankle boots! My desert boots spent some time chilling out at the back of my wardrobe, waiting for the motivation to re sole them, and last week I found it.

I took them to the Dixon St shoe repair and key cutters and the guy assured me he could repair them, but it would cost me $120. New desert boots (the same ones) I could get for $120 on sale maybe, or $220 full price. I momentarily tossed up the choice I had and then selected a new sole, super hard wearing, black, and was told I’d get a txt from them when they were done (it seems even shoe repairers have gone hi tech! Who knew?!). On Monday I went and got them back. They are almost like new. Better in some ways, the sole is much more hard wearing, and the shoe repair guy had rebuilt the toe box, polished the leather to a proud shine, and so these new feeling shoes looked tougher, aged, they have a life scratched into the leather. I know where they’ve been. They have a patina. I wear them knowing I’ve supported a local small business, these shoes get me from A to B, with dry feet, and in style but more than that, I walk with pride. A new pair of boots would have felt good, something like this, for a few days, the shiny new leather would have gleamed and shouted, “I’m New!”. But like all new things, this fades.

The lustre of skill and a deed well done, takes much longer to fade.

20120622-145729.jpg

My version of sketching.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

When I design I don’t sketch the finished design – like what you can see on the right side of the page spread, I sketch the pattern roughly first (image on ruled paper), then I cut and sew the garment up, designing on the mannequin and body as I go, and then will sketch the pattern further as it gets more resolved and I might sketch the finished garment afterwards. I do this because otherwise I am limiting myself, shutting down ideas of form and fall before they have even formed. So, for me a pattern is a sketch.

The design in the image above was a bit of an experiment in fast 2D/3D sketching. I wanted a draped knit coat/cardigan and a pair of track-pants for mooching around the house in. The fabric I got was 169cm wide so I had an extra piece about 45cm wide on the side that i could use for something else, so I made a very simple asymmetrical tshirt – really just a rectangle with irregularly placed neck and arm holes. So out of 2m x 1.69m of end of roll, NZ made black merino knit fabric, I got three items I needed, but with the added bonus of being zero waste and much better looking than your average pair of trackies, cardy and tshirt… All for $40 and 4 hours of my time

Commune@RMIT Brunswick

In July I’ll be be speaking all about Zero Waste Fashion at Commune@RMIT Brunswick! Explore your creativity and celebrate the global world of fashion and textiles at RMIT University’s annual sustainability festival and conference day, It’s going to be exciting! Also speaking are :
*Kate Fletcher. Leading UK academic on sustainability in fashion – Live interactive skype session from UK
*Lyn Stephenson. President, Industrial Hemp Victoria
*Steve Wright. Senior Lecturer Fashion Design, Canberra Institute of Technology

There is a Master Class:
*Linda Jackson . Australian fashion designer, fashion retailer and artist

And stalls by:
*Paris ‘99
*Pedal Pushers
*RMIT Bookshop
*Student cake stalls
*The Greens
*Friends of the Earth

And two exhibitions:
*Textiles Design and Development TAFE students and graduates
*Bachelor of Arts (Textile Design) students and graduates

Check out the events facebook page for more info and I hope to see you there

My first article for EcoSalon!

I’ve been asked to write a column for the wonderful folks at EcoSalon every 2 weeks. Next article will be available this Friday. It will going into a bit more detail regarding a number of Zero Waste fashion designers. Stay tuned!

Void 2012 Patterns

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

These are the patterns that make all the garments shown in the Void video below. Some make a single garment, some make  2.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 72 other followers