Monday, 6 June 2011

Openwear Conference: Refashioning Fashion, new scenarios of clothing

Openwear is a collaborative clothing project exploring new and alternative models for fashion that promote open design and peer to peer production. Through collective action, shared practice and an online community this new initiative provides a platform for designers to come together.

Last week, I attended a conference hosted by Openwear titled: Refashioning Fashion, new scenarios of clothing. I presented my PhD research and was lucky enough to meet and listen to a series of talks exploring: open source business models, designing participatory interactions, re-thinking craftsmanship through new tools, methods, process and sustainability through social, economic and environmental perspectives.

I will write up some reflections over the next few days... Above is some work produced during five days of intensive workshops used to design their first collective collection and series of look maps to enable and invite anyone to download the "how-to" from their platform in an open source formate.

I found this conference to be both insightful and inspirational. I could relate to their work through my own practice and it was a great opportunity to see the multitude of ways that co-design could be applied to fashion and diffused online. The struggle between traditional models and this new way of working is always contested through economic arguments - how can a professional designer sustain an income and maintain their specialised skills if they are constantly revealing how they make what the produce new work?? This conference covered business and economics from an interdisciplinary team of experts who offered a counter argument.

The conference concluded with the statement "you are what you share" a nice tag line and mini manifesto for collective action. The collective collection is available for download and if your interested in joining the discussion sign up to their online community.

My presentation Co-Everything Part 2 is available for download / to view online.

Thursday, 12 May 2011

Future Everything

Come down to Victoria Baths on Saturday 14th May to join crafters, hackers and makers from all over the country, as they showcase their work and ask you to get involved!

Jen Ballie will be presenting the Shared Scarf Project and invite you to participate in an interactive alternative fashion experience by enabling you to rip and mix past and present fashion trends to make them your own.

A collective collection will be co-designed live from london and streamed to the stand... lots of digital tools will be on hand to enable new design concepts. All very interactive and experimental... alternatively please check and watch the next collection evolve - online contributions welcome.

If your in Manchester please come and say hello!

Wednesday, 27 April 2011

The Shared Scarf Project @ DESIGNERS|MAKERS

This Saturday the Shared Scarf Project will be running some DIY fashion workshops in collaboration with DESIGNERS|MAKERS Market Place. This interactive market stall will enable participants to rip and mix past and present fashion trends to make and style their own bespoke scarf. 

A selection of vintage scarves and The Shared Scarf Project's first "Collective Collection"  will also be on sale within the market stall.

Please come along and say hello. Workshops will be running from 11-5pm 


129-131 Mare Street
E8 3RH

For further info visit

Tuesday, 5 April 2011

DESIGNERS | MAKERS : Market Every Saturday

DESIGNERS / MAKERS is a new platform to promote contemporary design and craft in the UK, by creating opportunities for exchange and interaction that benefit a wide constituency of design and craft professionals and strengthen the contribution of design and craft to society.

Their mission is to is to give designers and craft practitioners a space to present their practice. Alongside an online platform they will be hosting a weekly market enabling designers and craft persons to showcase, sell work and interact with the general public.

I will be running some Pop up workshops within the market toward the end of this month. I will upload more info soon. This market space is open to graduate / student applications... For further information visit their website or contact Sophie.

Monday, 4 April 2011

Making is Connecting: the rise of a 'making and doing' culture

This is my current reading... it arrived on Saturday and have been working my way through it. 

 Everyone knows that making things, in real life or online, can be a pleasant activity. But David Gauntlett argues that making and sharing is much more than that: it is crucial to individual well-being, and the health of our whole society. Through making things, people engage with the world, and create connections with each other. Both online and offline, we see that people want to make their mark, and to make connections.

Feeling all inspired Bridget Harvey and I have booked into A Good Day for Making workshop run by the school of life.
This workshop explores the rise of a ‘making-and-doing’ culture, where people are rejecting traditional teaching and television, and making their own learning and entertainment instead. The workshop will  include a presentation, discussion, and some making and connecting.
I will report back on both my reading thoughts and the workshop soon. 

Sunday, 27 March 2011

Co-Design Workshop 2/6: Collaborative Consumption

Thinking / Concepts

Making by hand & digitally

Yesterdays co-design workshop explored the concept of collaborative consumption through the theme: fashion personified. Instead of hitting the high street on a Saturday afternoon - could groups of friends come together to engage in alternative fashion experiences?

The theme: fashion personified provided a starting point for our thinking and generated some discussion about fashion personas. The aim of this was to collect and group images which reflected each participants colour and style preference to enable them to make a design personalised to their individuality or alternatively to a fictional persona. We used photographs and magazines to produce a collage.

Some of the collages were then photographed and digitally manipulated to produce patterns and prints whilst others preferred to draw and paint their samples. Each participant focused on a palette of bold and bright colours... we discussed how we all liked colourful clothing but sometimes opted towards styling monotone outfits of black and grey therefor a colourful scarf could be a nice remedy.

This workshop differed from the last as our concept wall was much more visual and we used less words to convey our thoughts and inspiration. I think the visuals really helped the participants tune into the mood and aesthetic of the overall look they were trying to achieve. 

I was most impressed by our first male participant - a 14 year old boy who was so advanced in his use of photoshop, he was teaching us new techniques! It made me think about how savvy future generations will be having grown up surrounded by digital media tools and applications. 

These posts have reflected on the overall process of each workshop by sampling new techniques to design a scarf. A lot of work has been made and a batch of scarves will be sent off to be digitally printed over the new few days. Therefore, in the coming weeks I will reveal the concepts and showcase the final outcomes.

A new series of workshops will be launched May-June 2011. These will be based in London but a series of digital workshops will also be run live online in real time! So,  if your interested in getting involved, have any comments or ideas... please get in touch. 


Friday, 18 March 2011

Co-Design Workshop 2/6: Collaborative Consumption

The Scarf Project: Think | Make | Style | Share
This interactive workshop offers an opportunity to engage in an alternative fashion experience by enabling participants to think and make for themselves. A co-design toolkit will be used to facilitate action and enable the generation of a bespoke printed scarf for each participant. The workshop will end with a style session and photo shoot.

Are you a designer? A fashion / textiles student or graduate? Or are you a consumer / fashion enthusiast? Come along and get involved in a new and exciting fashion experience which will enable you to produce a scarf unique to your own style and personality. 

This workshop is free and all materials will be provided. To participate send an email to :