Advice for Textile Design Students

22.04.2012 § Leave a comment

I get questions about how to become a textile designer quite often, so I think it is worth recording some of my observations. Here are some of the most common questions that come up in my conversations with students:

What preparation or skills are needed to become a textile designer?

Becoming a textile designer requires an education in textiles. A good place to start is to ask yourself where you’d like to focus your studies. A school like the Rhode Island School of Design, for example, focuses on the aesthetic aspects of design whereas NC State’s College of Textiles is one of the best programs for textile technology, the actual function of textiles. « Read the rest of this entry »

The Last Samurai

29.09.2011 § Leave a comment

The movie The Last Samurai staring Tom Cruise in 2003 was an idealistic, epic style portrayal of the samurai movie, though it did not touch me much. A Japanese film critic thought The Last Samurai gave a “storybook” portrayal of the samurai, saying, “Our image of samurai are that they were more corrupt.” To me, the epic was depicted in such a Hollywood style naiveté, such a glamorous way that it felt like a fairytale. I suppose neither the director nor the producer were interested in what really happened to the last samurai; it was just good material for them to use to develop an epic style movie. « Read the rest of this entry »

Mold, Mildew, and Bacteria

01.07.2011 § 1 Comment

When to use antimicrobial finishes
I’m drawn to performance fabrics because they solve problems for customers.  In hot and humid places, mold and mildew can be a real headache indoors, let alone for outdoor use.  For the interior fabric industry, many fabrics are labeled as “mildew resistant.”  This might not mean that the fabric has been treated with any chemicals, simply that the fiber itself is inherently bacteria-resistant.  « Read the rest of this entry »

Natural Dye

11.04.2011 § 2 Comments

Many people think that natural dye would be environmentally friendly and that “green” products should use natural dye.  Let’s consider some facts about natural dyes.

Natural dyes have poor color power, meaning that a large amount of dye is needed to produce deep shades.  Natural dyes have poor color fastness to laundering and sunlight too.  Even indigo dye — which has a pretty good output — is not powerful enough to supply today’s demand.  « Read the rest of this entry »

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