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 :

Monday, 14 March 2011

The Scarf Project - Co-Design Workshop 1/6: Experimental Mark Making

Mark Making / Experimentation

Thinking / Concept Generation

The Scarf Project has launched with its first co-design workshop - Experimental Mark Making. 

This four hour workshop session explored lots of theory and thinking which surrounds the design process. To structure the action an interactive design game is being explored - allowing the participants to compete against one another to propose new design concepts.

The making component of this workshop was facilitated by Bridget Harvey who brought along a pick and mix of objects to draw with and from. She also challenged us to try alternative ways to make our marks such as: trying our pencils/ pens / paint brushes to string, drawing with our opposite hand and pulling at random from a lucky bag of found objects. We worked together and swapped work as we made it, this really changed the handle and quality of the work.

We closed the workshop by photographing our work and using photoshop to co-design a scarf. This rounded up the day nicely as we left having produced a finished and final outcome. We will each be expanding upon that outcome this week - as each of us will be producing our own scarf using the material we generated within the workshop.

These scarves will be sent off to be printed on Friday and a following session will be used to explore how to use the scarves.

The next co-design workshop will be on Saturday the 26th March... the theme will be revealed later this week. If your interested in participating just send me an email - OR leave your details below.

Tuesday, 8 March 2011

The Scarf Project Co-Design Workshop 1/6

This co-design workshop will be facilitated by Bridget Harvey.

The theme for this six part series of workshops is Global Fashion, Local Tradition.

We chose x6 words to inspire this theme... please bring along objects and/or materials which define these words and can be used for experimental mark making.

If you would like to come along - just send an email to -
OR join The Scarf Project on Facebook to follow updates and sign up to participate.

Spaces are limited so please RSVP.

Monday, 28 February 2011

The Scarf Project

So, the pilot project has ended and I would like to send a really big thank you to all of the textile design students and graduates who participated! The aim of the pilot was to explore new ways of working and was very experimental - therefore lots was learned through a quick and dirty approach. 

The main practice was staged through a four hour intensive workshop session which divided the participants into groups to produce mood boards, samples and swatches. The samples were then printed onto fabric and following a discussion with the participants these designs will be edited and adapted to produce some final prints for a small collection of scarves.

Which brings me to introduce the next stages of this research - "The Scarf Project". Over the next three months the thinking and making explored during the pilot will be expanded upon through a series of co-design workshops. To provide a focus and starting point the series has been titled : Global Fashion, Local Tradition inspired by the book below.

Global Fashion, Local Tradition

More information will be circulated this week to promote the workshops and invite people to participate. In the meantime we have set up a facebook group titled - The Scarf Project. If your interesting in coming along to share and exchange skills or just want to follow what we are up to - please sign up! 

Lots more info to follow. 

Friday, 25 February 2011

Group 2

Concept Design & Development

Mood Board

Samples and Swatches

Group 1

Concept Design and Development

Mood Board
Samples and Swatches

The Beginning

Inspiration Images
Following the project launch - all participants uploaded / emailed some 'inspiration images'. These images printed and ready for  the co-design workshop.

Sunday, 20 February 2011

Potential Scarf Fastenings...

Salvaged pieces of wood, cut and sanded, with holes ready for fastenings...

Thursday, 17 February 2011

Such a 'happy' outfit!

A beautiful ethnic looking tablecloth found in a vintage shop over the weekend.

A weave sample I did contrasting vertical and horizontal....

Also seen in Thakoon's Autumn 11 collection during NY fashion week-

Clashing colours, patterns, textures! Betsey Johnson style....

Wednesday, 16 February 2011

Pattern Inspiration

This image is part of a piece of work by Richard Galpin.  It is in the V&A in their photographic gallery.  He has peeled away the majority of the photo to leave this pattern.  I like it because of the detail in the areas left, and the clean look of the peeled areas.
This is an image I took in the Museum of Childhood at their exhibitions of paper models.  This one obviously hasn't been made yet!  I like the combination of patterns and details, different shapes and also the gaps between the parts.

LOVE FAKE FLOWERS.  They're so beautifully garish.

My image is of a kaleidoscope, something considered boring and uninteresting can be transformed into something intriguing and a complex pattern
The text written is poetry in Urdu language and kind of jokes.

Truck Art

Truck Art in Pakistan, The truck drivers pay a fortune to get their trucks painted. The stylized imagery and bright colors makes the truck lively and fun and attract the customers.
This is a door in Soho, I've walked past it so many times and not realised it was there which is surprising how bold and bright it is!The eclectic colours reminded me of the clash of colours we liked on Friday.  

Tuesday, 15 February 2011


I took this photo for one of my projects. I think that the colors of threads are very interesting and powerful. 

Monday, 14 February 2011

Colour inspiration

This is a photo I took of coloured laces hanging in a fabric shop in Tokyo. The vibrancy of the bold, fun colours catch the eye immediately and would cheer you up even on the gloomiest London day!

Hi everyone !

I found this image which is a part of a textile designer portfolio. Her name is Hallie Hoffman and she is from the United States.

What I like about the image is the way she uses colors and stripes in an innovative and playful way and also the brightness of the colors used.

Sunday, 13 February 2011


BE A DETECTIVE... This is your challenge to go out and look for clues... where can you source your inspiration?

Yellow Scarf / CHICTOPIA
I found this image on CHICTOPIA... an online fashion community which allows users to source inspiration, swap, shop and comment on all things fashion related. 

I find this image inspiring for lots of reasons... the profile shot and pose / colour palette / and the scale of print with large polka dots and stripes really stood out and I heart the 1960's vibe!

Design Probe Kits

Design Probe Kits

Some of the Tools

Everyone participating within The Scarf Project has been given a design probe: a small kit containing some tools and materials to capture ideas and inspiration. The probe kit contains a set of instructions outlining x3 set tasks... these tasks will be revealed during the coming week.

Saturday, 12 February 2011

The Scarf Project

Brainstorm Session

Edited Brainstorm

The project is officially live and I would like to introduce: The Scarf Project!

Yesterday all of the participants were invited to the project launch where we discussed possible themes and ideas for this collaborative collection of fashion fabrics during a brainstorming session. 

A collection of street fashion books were used as a starting point and a source for inspiration. I will be scanning and uploading the selected images to this space shortly.

Each participant has been given a design probe which contains some materials and x3 small tasks... which you will learn more about if you watch this space as this blog will be used to document, reference and share ideas over the coming week. 

Tuesday, 1 February 2011

Final Call for Participation

Illustration by Joy Nevada 2011

I am in the process of preparing for the first of three live projects exploring co-design for fashion / textiles and digital media. The first project will launch online next week and introduce the selected participants. 

If you haven't applied there is still time! Full details can be found here or on the Textiles Environment Design (TED) Blog. If your unable to attend but interested in the following projects please send an email and I will circulate more information as and when it is available. The first project will be located in London but there will be an opportunities to participate online.

A big thank you to all who have submitted emails! Further details about where and when will be circulated to all of the selected participants tomorrow.

Tuesday, 25 January 2011

Call for Participation

Illustration by Joy Nevada 2011

*Call for Participation*


Calling all current fashion or textile design students/graduates interested in collaboration: you are hereby invited to participate in a practice-led research project exploring co-design.

Design has transitioned from an era of designing ‘for’ people towards the current era of designing ‘with’ people. Brown (2010) predicts that in the future, design will become a social experience and no longer practiced in isolation.

The term Generation Y is used to define a demographic (born between 1977 and 1997) who have grown up surrounded by digital media. Tapscott (2008) argues that this group are a force of social transformation:

- As consumers they want to be prosumers co-innovating products and services

- They use digital media to edit, create and distribute their own content

- They collaborate by constructing their own social networks

- They innovate by becoming active participants within the design process.

Economic changes bound up with globalisation are increasing pressures for people to re-think current models of design and production. The fashion industry is exploring new models to enable Gen Y to participate through exploratory marketing campaigns and streaming fashion week live online. There is huge potential for digital media and design to collaborate to construct new ways of working, but a re-think of the relationship between the designer and the consumer is required: both to consider how new technology can be used to enable the exchange of skills and knowledge, and to bring us into the future with consideration to the users needs and wants.

The selected participants will be invited to a design meeting where the project will be pitched and they will play an active role in defining the overall brief. You will leave with a goodie bag of design tools, tips and tricks to get started on your design research and development.

The following week we will meet again and get to work collectively designing a collection of fashion fabrics and accessories.

This is an exciting opportunity for you to participate in a live research project and play an active role in defining new design approaches, an excellent CV opportunity.

Participant Criteria

- A current fashion or textile design student or graduate

- An Interest and familiarity with digital media tools for example, blogging, twitter, Flickr and Facebook.

- Available for two weeks to participant from Monday 7th - 18th February 2011. There will be x2 real time meetings and the rest will be online.

How to Participate

Send a few short sentences describing YOU as a designer.
Send an email to:
Include: Your name, contact information, University of study, and a blog link if you have one.

Visit - for updates and further information. This is the first in a series of new projects so if your unavailable and would like to be considered for up and coming events just send a quick email.
Looking forward to hearing from you!