Wednesday, June 13, 2007

why not waste?

At Design Inquiries an audience member asked me why we should worry about wasting (or not) fabric? I replied that I believed fabric to be a sophisticated, precious, designed product in its own right, usually with a significant ecological footprint already attached. Since then (and even before, as my journal shows), I've thought about this more. (Of course I have; this is the rationale for my entire project.) It would seem to me that it's also about the fashion designer having a different sort of appreciation or respect for fabric. If you look at the works of Zandra Rhodes and Mark Liu, for example, both design the textiles first, then the garment. The rich thinking processes that constitute textile design, all of the problem solving, is evident to you when you've designed the fabric. Perhaps when you design the garment, the fabric is that much more precious then that it becomes that much more difficult to waste it. Rhodes actually talks about this: “The [printed] patterns lead me along and influence the way I use them [in garments]…I always consider what is left and try to make it into another part of the dress. I can’t tolerate waste and use every inch.” [In: Rhodes, Z. and A. Knight, 1984: The art of Zandra Rhodes. London, Jonathan Cape, page 56]

I don't know. It's just makes sense not to waste it.

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