Monday, 31 July 2017

Design for the Future: The Future is Weave

Weaving is archaic I hear you say. What place does a cottage craft have in this digital world? Combining the craft and the digital - the weave with the computer is something I am increasingly curious about. My love of weave stems from my fascination with structure, the tactile and construction, the black and the white, the ups and downs. The heavy mechanical sound, the steady reliable rhythm. Weave excites me. 
Taken in 2013, Isle of Harris. Donald John Mackay at his Hattersley loom.

The potential for a woven future is mostly untapped and asking to be explored. The perfect combination of weave structure and yarn can produce highly effective, functional materials with shock absorbency, bullet proofing, waterproofing, rigidity. What if I can magnify those properties by amplifying the structure and weaving off the loom, using 3D printing technology? My next three years will be dedicated to research of 3D woven materials for the circular economy
Image taken form Ellen MacArthur Foundation website

Why am I interested in the circular economy? Why the hell not? Our children, our grandchildren and our planet need a future too and one way I can contribute to their future as a weave designer is to look at how I can reduce textile waste, use alternative materials, maybe even change the way companies and consumers view the product life cycle. Now, thats one hell of a challenge. I love challenges, especially ones I get to tackle with the help of others with expertise in different fields. The best innovation comes from collaboration with scientists, engineers, economists, architects... the list goes on. Innovation is the key to the future, It always has been. 
A 3D print of a woven structure. 

The future for design must be circular.
The future for 3D printing is democratic.
The future for weaving is digital.
The future for us is working together.
The future for 3D weaving is emergency shelters, protective wear, sports wear, shoes, insulation, vehicle, interior, body, space, aerospace...

How exciting!

This blog post is a part of Design Blogger Competition organized by CGTrader

Tuesday, 25 July 2017

Kiwis Flax. Plucked and Woven. My year without a loom.

A year off from the grinding reality of working your arse off for low pay just to be able to cover your London rent and a tiny desk in an over overcrowded studio only to find you're working your arse off and don't have time to use your desk to create what you do best... A year off from FOMO. The ever increasing social pressure of a better online presence, a better offline presence, marriage, babies, growing debt, mindfulness, health, fitness... BREATHE.

I met a boy. One year later we quit our jobs and found ourselves in New Zealand. The grass is always greener on the other side of the planet. Our intention was to explore, live life without stuff, bills, pressure and conform , meet family and make friends and maybe even to find our dream spot to put our roots down and to find my creativity again.

I found family, friends, open space to think and reflect, Kiwis, blisters, burns, backbreaking work, hot springs and new springs, Orcas and Albatros, the cold, the damp, the dark nights and the bird song, the earthquakes, resilience, determination and generosity.

We Wwoofed, worked, picked, cleared, waited, weeded, dug, killed, kayaked, bathed, dived, swam, trudged, tramped, stomped, slipped, fell, feared, moaned, shivered, smelled, went hungry, went thirsty, ate, feasted, licked, sucked, plucked, fished, drank, danced, clapped, sang, laughed, cried, comforted, argued, swore, kissed, touched, tickled, played, wove flax, sketched strangers, read mostly crap, dreamed of weaving, learned to live.

We didn't stay. I wanted to weave again. 

Monday, 9 November 2015

Gravity Sketch

I am in the process of testing a new software program, Gravity Sketch, which has been developed to give designers a more intuitive method of designing 3d forms. It is this transition between Gravity Sketch software into Rhino and then into product I have been experimenting with. This process has been a huge learning curve for me, as I find Rhino totally unintuitive to navigate, which is where Gravity Sketch comes in. On top of this designing process I've had to lean how to use various 3D printer software and learn that patience has a whole other meaning when dealing with all of them together on one computer, in a short space of time.

These Past Few Months - Weaving in 3D

My work is going in a really exciting direction at the moment. Through an RSA  - The Great Recovery project, I have been using FabLab London as my base and source of all 3D printing knowledge. Since July I've been developing 3D printed materials that are based on woven structures, with the circular economy model ever present in every stage of the design process.

Using the 3d printing facilities I am developing material samples that aid my research into creating shock absorbing textiles solely from one component. Cutting out any excess waste and additional materials usually required for spacer/ shockproof fabric. Using a 3d printer to create textiles enables me to transform traditional weave structures from the x and y axis into the x,y and z. It frees one from the constraints of a loom and adds a third dimension to the fabric.

Developing textiles for the circular economy is achievable through the use of a 3d printer. A traditional weaving loom creates waste at the start and finish of each warp and a selvedge along the edges of the fabric that is then discarded. A 3d printer has none of this excess waste textile.

Wednesday, 18 February 2015


Very happy to be a confirmed speaker in the SitSelect October conference, talking about advances in woven textiles.

Sunday, 11 January 2015

The Tweed

Honeycomb hue tweed waistcoat.

The Mill

Ambrose Vevers Design

A Mill for a Tweed

Ambrose Vevers is a wood worker and a bee keeper, practicing on the wilds of Dartmoor. I needed a new warping mill and he wanted a waistcoat. What happened next was a skill swap between two craftsmen that culminated in the creation of a beautifully made warping mill (ash and elm) and a honeycomb hued tweed waistcoat made from Irish wool. 

Tuesday, 6 January 2015

6 Months Ongoing

Happy New Year. To kick off 2015 I am part of an exhibition with 9 other recent Royal College of Art graduates. Come along to see some exciting new projects.

Friday, 12 September 2014

Sptialfields Shoot.

A collaboration with Vanners Silk Weavers and Felix Wolodymyr Chabluk Smith.

Thursday, 4 September 2014

Tuesday, 24 June 2014

Dezeen . IDE . RCA . Textiles

A fellow RCA IDE graduate, Oluwaseyi Sosanya invents a 3D weaving machine, in collaboration with me! Dezeen investigate.

Thursday, 6 March 2014

Monday, 24 February 2014

maison d'exceptions @ premier vision

Learning to tie wisteria fibre at the Yushisha stand, Maison d'Exceptions
Last week Hana, Jennie and I were reunited with four of the Japanese craftsmen and mills we visited in October (Nishiyama Silk Mill, Tamiya Raden, Yushisha and Amaika Textile Industry). It was wonderful to see their highly skilful fabrics on show at Maison d'Exceptions at Premier Vision, Paris and we were very privileged to have designed a collection of fabrics for Nishiyama Silk Mill.

Sunday, 9 February 2014

Fiat/RCA Collaboration

Check out this review of the Fiat and Royal College of Art collaboration I took part in at the end of 2013. Our concept was the new 'Cheerfully Irresponsible' Fiat 500.

Cheerfully Irresponsible