Modern Construction of Textiles. Lecture Three Notes.

Within this Lecture I learnt the innovative processes/textiles in this modern day. When you compare them to the tradition construction of textile

  • Weaving
  • Knitting
  • Non-woven

It is truly amazing to see how far textiles has evolved and what constructions and innovative textile there are now.

3D Spacer Fabrics


















unknown, (2011), 3D mesh fabric [ONLINE]. Available at: [Accessed 31 October 14].

  • Warp Knitted or Woven
  • The central layer consists of countless threads which contribute to elasticity and flexibility of the spacer fabric besides the distance held between the covering layers.
  • Uses Synthetic Fibres such as Polyester. This can differ on each face and the filling depending on required function and end use.
  • Water resistant, antibacterial treatments and fire-retardant properties can be added.
  • Used in shoes, sports bags, cushioning clothing, seating, baby bedding and other medical and protective product.
  • Good durability so can be used outside.

Personally i think this would be great for hospital chairs and bedding due to its anti-bacterial qualities and its comfort. 

  • The skeleton of the Venus Flower Basket sponge provided inspiration for the 3D textile construction.
  • The aim was To replace foam filling layers.
  • It combines multi-dimensional stability and flexibility with lightness of weight.

3D Spacer Knit Fabrics

  • Adidas was the first company to create a football boot with an upper layer knit. From Heel to toe with one single thread. Additional coatings add waterproofing cutting waste is eliminated and sewing time reduced.
  • 3D Spacer Knit Fabrics have lightweight and breathable pressure relieving cushions.
  • The cushions are said to distribute the weight and allow maximum airflow. Which provides benefits to the skin and retains a healthy skin tone. Helping blood flow for people sitting in one position fir too long periods of time.
  • These cushions specially benefit wheelchair users, people in office jobs and taxi divers.
  • Designed with the focus on health and comfort, the range is said to be non-allergenic and provide contamination resistance and odour.


3D Spacer Woven Fabrics

  • Used in Automobile industries. Produced using Glass fibres or robust synthetics such as kevlar.
  • The central part of the material can be used to carry other substances or materials such as wiring or conduits.



Body Scanning

  • An Automatic measuring system that measures the body and creates designs for mass-market products to the customers needs (trousers and tops ect). These designs are then created for the costumer later on.Allowing the products to fit the customer perfectly as its designed for them.
  • It is an effective competing strategy for maximising customer satisfaction. It also minimises inventory costs.



Polvinen, E, (2012), Virtual Fashion Technology [ONLINE]. Available at: [Accessed 31 October 14].


Sprayed Fabrics

  • This involves the creation of a liquid suspension sprayed by either a spray gun aerosol can.
  • Properties can be taken to meet the needs of the consumer. intricate patterns can be creating a number of colours.leading to an aesthetically pleasing fabric.
  • different fibres can be used from natural to synthetic. Incorporating colours from primary to fluorescent. These different fibres can create great flexibility for modern consumers and industrial needs.


Thompson, L, (2010), Fabrican [ONLINE]. Available at: [Accessed 31 October 14].

Moulded Fabrics

  • It is possible to mould synthetic yarn around a form to create the desired silhouette- no cutting or sewing required.
  • By applying heat the tangled non-woven fibres fuse into three-dimensional wearable sculptures with clean lines, descisive shapes and unexpected contours.
  • Petroleum based fibres are used however they are designing in free form rather than through conventional methods. The fibres themselves transform from 2D to 3D without the amounts of waste that traditional construction methods involve.
  • Could also be used for product design as well as fashion and clothing.

Growing Fabrics

  • An Alternative to exploiting petro-chemicals or plants as a raw material for textile products.
  • Biocouture work investigates the use of microbes to grow a textile/leather type bio material
  • Fermenting bacteria form a dense layer, a flexible cellulose mat that can then be harvested.
  • The aim is to produce an entire piece to fit a personalised form.
  • Takes dye easily and can be printed
  • Safe to compost- feels like a vegetable leather

Rapid Prototyping/3D Print

‘Three-dimensional printing may have little in common with sustainability—at first blush, anyway—but the rapid-prototyping process has a litany of surprisingly green benefits. The emerging technology, which uses ultraviolet beams to fuse layers of powdered, recyclable thermoplastic into shape, leaves behind virtually no waste. Its localized production and one-size-fits-all approach also racks up markedly fewer travel miles, requires less labor, and compresses fabrication time to a matter of hours, rather than weeks or months.” – Ecouterre. (2014) Are 3D fabrics the Future?. Available at: <; (Accessed: 31 October 2014).

The technology is being used to produce anything ranging from body parts to catwalk fashion. However, questions still remain about the range of materials which can be processed to production speeds and in case of textiles substitution can be desired properties be achieved?


Rapid Prototyping

  • this recent technology uses ultraviolet beams to fuse layers of powdered thermoplastic into shape. Products are recyclable and process leaves behind virtually no waste.
  • Production can be localised and the personalisation of the process reduces travel miles. This requires less labour and reduces manufacturing time to just hours rather than weeks or months.
  • Instead of producing textiles by the meter, then cutting sewing them, this concept has the ability to make needle and thread obsolete.
  • Multiple end uses also ensures commercially of the process.


Schmidt, M & Bitonti, F. (2013) Unknown [Online Image] Available at: <; [Accessed 31 October 2014]

3D Felting

  • This recent development from disney 3D prints wool into a given shape. The felting printer prints layers of a material (in this case wool yarn) until a final object is completed



Hudson, S.(2012)Printing Teddy Bears: A Technique for 3D Printing of Soft Interactive Objects [Online Image]. Available at: <; [Accessed 31 October 2014]

  • The aim is to create 3D items which are soft to the touch
  • Instead of extruding melted plastic filament, layer by layer. It uses yarn which is then driven down into the layers beneath it, creating an attachment via needle punching.
  • Electronic components could be printed within.
  • Researchers are now working on ways to integrate hard materials within and attached to the soft felt-like material being printed.


Inspiration From Nature



  • textiles can mimic a living bio system. Velco was the first.
  • Fasten-Air is a recent evolution of velcro in warp knitted form combining hook & lop closure with stretch.
  • Speedo’s Fastskin suit replicates the surface of shark skin via a mix of contruction & surface finish
  • Self cleaning waterproof textiles mimic the surface of a lutus leaf
  • The Stomatex product uses the principle of a leaf’s natural ability to transpire & keep dry & is used in products that are totally encase the body such as diving suits & medical joints supports. 

Bio- response Textiles

  • A pine cone inspired a fabric that becomes more open or closed in response to changes in humidity
  • Developed by Dr Kapsai in the uk the function brings automatically increased comfort in extreme conditions, especially moving between hot &cold areas.
  • Conventional fibres swell when absorbing moisture, reducing the permeability.
  • Inotek fibres do the opposite. As moisture is absorbed fibres close & reduce in volume causing the yarn to be thin. Micro air pockets are opened in the textile to increase breathability. Different areas of a product can be constructed using different functionality.


unknown, (2009), unknown [ONLINE]. Available at: [Accessed 31 October 14].


  • The gecko lizard’s ability of sticking and clinging to the surfaces is being developed in fabric constructions
  • It may have the ability to replace other traditional fastenings or coat the surface of another material.
  • it can repeatedly peel and stick, uses conventional synthetics such as nylon & polyurethane can be recycled and manufactured to suit specific needs.

Oversized Stitches


Studio Aisslinger. (2014) 3D stitching POP Up Furniture. [Online Image] Available at: <; [Accessed 31 October 2014]

  • Playing with size and scale to make creative and inspiring art pieces and products.
  • Oversized gauges can produce a blanket of average size. It is the act of creation of the piece and the oversized stitches that lend it a thickness and visual impact.
  • Equipment and yarn needed is big scale – such as plastic tubing for needles and untwisted wool rovings as yarn.
  • In furniture designers have referenced traditional net making &knotting, wrapping durable polyester around a steel frame.

Oversized Weaves

  • Upscaling a conventional basket weave using ropes as yarns
  • Architect Dani Marti has used this giant rug-like structure as a mould for a concrete equivalent.


Marti, D. (2010) Baroque Minimalism. [Online Image]. Available at: <; [Accessed 31 October 2014]

Flat Knitting

  • More conventional flat knitting methods have been updated by companies such as nike in their Flyknit shoes.
  • A one piece show upper that is virtually seamless is created using complex mix of flat knitting techniques to impart shape & function.
  • The finished shoe is extremely lightweight & can be customised for individual athletes.

Seamless Knitting

  • Seamless knitting is a specific knitting technology that uses specialised  circular looms to develop garments that adapt perfectly to the body, making people forget that they are actually wearing them.
  • By eliminating the fabric cutting and sewing process there is an optimisation of the production process making seamless production a lot faster than conventional.
  • There are also fewer product failures since most errors are due to seam failure.
  • More comfortable for the next to skin wear garments such as base layers can be engineered using a variety of stitch density and yarn variations for optimal performance.

Laser Welding

  • Used to cut pieces of fabric. heat weld seams together. to form smooth, flat,pliable and weatherproofed.
  • A thermo-plastic element is necessary.
  • Conventional stitching makes minute holes this allows water penetration in harsh conditions.

Smart Tailoring

  • Increases fabric efficiency by 15|% and reduces lead-time by 50% in garment manufacture.
  • It also reduces fabric waste while saving energy and water by 70 to 80%
  • By using a computer attached to the loom data such as colour related to the garment is entered and the loom produces the exact pieces
  • weaving fabric cutting and patterning happen all at once.

Zero waste Cutting

  • Designers such as Holly McQullian use digital print to create zero waste fashion pieces.
  • Estimated 10,000 tones of fabric is wasted every year in the UK. Thats 15% of fabric wastage used for making clothes.
  • The creation of a product working within the space of the fabric width, a challenging approach that directly influences the design as pattern cutting process is a primary design step.
  • Pieces of fabric are cut without leaving behind any scrapes of waste.

Laser Cutting

  • Laser cutting can also be used to create zero waste through cutting. Cutting the exact parts needed from the fabric and placing them together like a jigsaw puzzle.

Fabric Manipulation


Fonyodi, G. (2010) unknown. [Online]. Available at: <; [Accessed 31 October 2014]


  • Ferromagnetism is the strongest form of magnetism. It creates forces strong enough to be felt and is responsible for the common phenomena of magnetism encountered in everyday life.
  • Designers such as Jenny Leavy and Linda Florence have experimented with magnetism to create magical textiles.

Laser & Water Jet Cutting

  • Laser cutting seals the edges of most textiles virtually eliminating the problem of fraying. Different fibres give different results.
  • Lasers are able to cut the most detailed patterns in fine and heavy materials.
  • water Jet cutting is used when fibres are sensitive to the high temperatures generated by other methods.
  • Both have applications in a diverse number of industries from mining to aerospace where they are used for cutting, shaping, carving and reaming.
  • Fabric can be cu t& decorated in one process.

Laser Decoration 

  • A variety of patterning is achievable using laser techniques. Synthetics and leather leaves a clean smooth cut, while natural fibres will fray slightly & can sometimes show slight singe marks.
  • Security markings can be placed onto a fabric warp prior to weaving. This will only be disclosed under UV light & will authenticate a genuine branded piece.


Laser Cutting Textile/Fashion Design

























Hur, E. (2010) Nomadic Wonderland. [Online]. Available at: <; [Accessed 31 October 2014]

This project of Eunsuk Hur is called “Nomadic Wonderland”, that is inspired by plants ,animals and our environments. She is thinking about the outcome that garments are growth in a worn way. She makes a textile on wall or as garment ro scarf to present this situation. She creates an outcome present her deeply consideration about the damage of our environment. Creating textiles that are irresistibly touchable, and textiles that can be interchangeable. She applied laser cutting, acid painting and etching in her fabric ,making the textile in 3 dimensional.


Fonyodi, G. (2010) unknown. [Online]. Available at: <; [Accessed 31 October 2014]

Hudson, S.(2012)Printing Teddy Bears: A Technique for 3D Printing of Soft Interactive Objects [Online Image]. Available at: <; [Accessed 31 October 2014]

Hur, E. (2010) Nomadic Wonderland. [Online]. Available at: <; [Accessed 31 October 2014]

Marti, D. (2010) Baroque Minimalism. [Online Image]. Available at: <; [Accessed 31 October 2014]

Polvinen, E, (2012), Virtual Fashion Technology [ONLINE]. Available at: [Accessed 31 October 14].

Schmidt, M & Bitonti, F. (2013) Unknown [Online Image] Available at: <; [Accessed 31 October 2014]

Studio Aisslinger. (2014) 3D stitching POP Up Furniture. [Online Image] Available at: <; [Accessed 31 October 2014]

Thompson, L, (2010), Fabrican [ONLINE]. Available at: [Accessed 31 October 14].

unknown, (2009), unknown [ONLINE]. Available at: [Accessed 31 October 14].

unknown, (2011), 3D mesh fabric [ONLINE]. Available at: [Accessed 31 October 14].





Lecture 2. Notes and Further Research.

Within this lecture I learnt more about synthetic and man made fibres and how these are used within todays textiles. I will also learn more about these non-traditional fibre sources and how they are naturally made. This will be very interesting as last lecture I mainly looked at and discussed natural fibres. Perhaps I can learn about the fibres they use in medical practice within this lecture a little further. Perhaps this lecture will inspire more questions and interests into different textiles that I want to research.

Synthetic Biology

  • Investigations into fibre sources from animals and insects is leading to some fascinating results
  • Spider silk is the biological engineered fibres currently being investigated via genetic modification in goats or silk worms.
  • Scientists took the gene that encodes strong dragline silk from an orb-weaver spider and placed it among the DNA that prompts milk production in goats. This genetic circuit was then inserted in an egg and implanted into a mother goat. When she lactates her milk is full of spider silk protein.
  • Stronger than steel or Kevlar
  • Produced in the US by Nexia as BioSteel it will initially be used in the medical area.fiber

AMSilk GmbH, (2014), Biosteel Fibre [ONLINE]. Available at: [Accessed 24 October 14].

The biodegradable fabric of Biosteel would need to be sealed from the environment if used in critical applications such as body armor or spacecraft, because it could then be digested.’  -Target Health Global 2014, Milk+Silk = Biosteel. Available from: <> . [24 October 2014].

Biosteel can also be used for wond closure systems, vascular wond repair devices, homeostatic dressings, patches and glues and other medical devices such as ligament prosthetic devices.

As you can see from my two pieces of research that this material has its positives and negative properties. However it appears in the medical field that this textile is very innovative and creates a great barrier for dressings ect. Being a genetically made natural fibre it is also renewable and environmentally friendly.

Bio Fibres

  • Hagfish slime, produced as a protective mechanism has potential in the textile world.
  • The hagfish produces a protective slime that expands if a predator bites it. Researchers at the university of Guelph in Canada claims that this has the potential to become a fabric, explaining that when the slime dries out it becomes a silky stretchy substance.
  • Protein fibres in the slime are nearly as strong as a spiders silk.
  • The long term aim is to find better mechanisms to process natural materials into fibres so that either slime or spider silk could be the next generation of high-performance materials.

Bio Medical Fibres- (Decided to research this myself a little more)

‘Various synthetic and natural fibres, each with unique properties, are used to construct biomedical textiles. Fibres are used in a variety of applications depending on the characteristic required; for example carbon fibre known for its absorption properties is used in wound dressings and absorption columns. However it is used for its strength in artificial ligaments and for its lubricity in orthopaedic cushioning. Synthetic polymers, used extensively, can be divided into permanent e.g. polyamide, polyester, polyethylene, polypropylene, PTFE and polyurethane and biodegradable which are mainly used in sutures and tissue engineering structures e.g. polycaprolactone, polyglycolic acid and polylactic acid. Natural biological fibres include: chitin (from the cells of crustacea) a polysaccharide renowned for its wound healing properties and incorporated into wound dressings; collagen (a fibrous protein found in connective tissue, tendons, etc.) used in cell engineering structures, for example artificial skin; and alginate fibres which can interact with the wound to form an absorbent gel, that acts as a protective barrier and still allows the wound to breathe.’

Edinborough &Scottish borders, What are Biomedical Textiles. Available from: [24 October 2014]


Unknown, (2012), Innovation in Textiles [ONLINE]. Available at: [Accessed 24 October 14].

As you can see from this little piece of research that biofibres are also used throughout the medical practice. Carbon fibres have absorbing properties and therefore create great characteristics for dressings.

Bio- Materials

  • Fibre that show the aesthetics of silk is produced from the casein in milk
  • Waste/spoiled milk is still used and turned into a profitable bi-product.

This would mean that nothing is getting wasted and therefore this is a sustainable and environmentally friendly process as nothing gets wasted.

  • Has skin friendly properties. It has properties of absorbency and blends well with other fibres.
  • It has soft aesthetics and properties with good fluidity and drape.
  • Affinity with viscose type fibres.

These Biomaterials are almost Mimicking nature and its systems.

  • Protein textiles that can think and are ‘living’ and respond to different actions.
  • Silk type fibre from the larvae of the honey bee is 100xfiner than human hair, skin friendly and biodegradable.
  • Aiming to create Dissolvable wound dressings that can sense the state of the wound and respond accordingly.
  • Linking teams of biologists with textile engineers and medical professions

Bio Materials

  • It took 60,000 bees and two months to make Vessel number 1. Created by Tomas Libertiny.
  • By using honey bees Libertiny pushes the boundaries of conventional textiles and design by defying mass production and enabling nature to create what would typically be considered a man-made product.
  • The material comes from flowers as a by-product of bees, and in this form ends up serving flowers on their last journey.
  • Vessel number 1 has the potential to last over 2000 years. Honeycombs containing edible honey were found in Egyptian pharaohs tombs.


Libertiny, T. (2011) Vessel 1 [Online] Available at: <;. Accessed (24 October 2014)

Growing Fabrics

  • Alternative to petrochemicals or plants as a raw material for textile products.
  • Biocouture explores growing microbes to create textile/leather type bio material.
  • The fermentation of bacteria forms a dense layer, flexible cellulose mat that can then be harvested.
  • Takes dye easily and can be printed.
  • Safe to compost- feels like vegetable leather.


  • Researching alternatives to synthetic textiles and swapping them with mycelium/fungi to create fabrics and materials.
  • Jae Rhim Lee created a ‘death suit’ from fabric embedded with mushroom spores to facilitate speedy decomposition and removal of harmful toxins.


Rhim, J. (2008) Infinity Burial Suit [Online] Available at: <;. Accessed (24 October 2014)

Leather alternatives

  • Bio-based leather created by Richard Wool from the Univeristy of Delaware made from natural fibres and oils.
  • Flax or cotton and plant oils are laminated together in layers to create a breathable leather like material.
  • A great improvement on other leather alternatives such as PVC as it’s breathable and very pliable
  • A studio in the Netherlands created a sturdy alternative to leather by using leaves of the Areca palm tree. Made by soaking the plant matter in a special biological solution that leaves it supple and pliable. Biodegradable, 100% Vegan friendly. Come in variations of colour. Economic opportunities for artisans in south India where the leaves and the skills to manipulate them are common.

High tech fibres – Carbon Fibre

  • Carbon fibre- contains at least 90% carbon obtained by the controlled pyrolysis or decomposition of appropriate fibres, frequently rayon.
  • Carbon fibres conductive with heat or power for interactive products and smart textiles.
  • A recently coloured version of carbon fibre from hypertext will extend its use.

Earlier in these notes and research I found that carbon fibre was also used in the dress wonds within medical practice. Is this right? Because if it conducts electricity and heat wouldn’t this be dangerous for the wond? Perhaps it only uses a small amount of carbon fibre? I will need to research this further.

Throughout this lecture I have highlighted and jotted down the key textiles and information relating to textiles within medical practice. I have also included some further information I had found on medical textiles and biomaterials within medical practices.

I would like to research this further into more detail looking at the biofibres and materials within medical practice as well as some of the other materials like Alginate that was mentioned within the last lecture. Maybe this will lead me onto other textiles in the medical practice. I am very interested in seeing what properties each textile has and how it help people who are injured or have life risking damages.



Edinborough &Scottish borders, What are Biomedical Textiles. Available from: [24 October 2014]

Target Health Global 2014, Milk+Silk = Biosteel. Available from: <> . [24 October 2014].

Online Images

AMSilk GmbH, (2014), Biosteel Fibre [ONLINE]. Available at: [Accessed 24 October 14].

Libertiny, T. (2011) Vessel 1 [Online] Available at: <;. Accessed (24 October 2014)

Rhim, J. (2008) Infinity Burial Suit [Online] Available at: <;. Accessed (24 October 2014)

Unknown, (2012), Innovation in Textiles [ONLINE]. Available at: [Accessed 24 October 14].

Thoughts from the Lecture. What Interested Me? What can I Research Further?

I began to write down what interested me in the lecture. This then developed into different thought processes and allowed me to see what thoughts I could research further.


I found this lecture very interesting showing me an overview of the main natural fibres. It’s amazing how textiles are so innovative creating materials that are used in hospitals because of their hygienic properties.

I am interested in looking into this further and see

What other materials are used within the hospital and medical practice?

How are alginate and other synthetic materials used?

How do the other material work and what are they used for?

What fibre types are they?

Who makes it?

Where does all the materials come from?

What are the cost implications?

This makes me wonder about the other innovative textiles that are out there and how they are being used to help people and develop/evolve us further as a race. Perhaps I could look into astronaut suits and special body suits that can change/transform the properties of our natural bodies. Body suits that evolve us to fit into different environments.


How do these suits work?

What suits can I find that can transform the properties of our natural bodies and that can allow us to fit and be able to “live” in an environment that would normally damage our bodies?

What materials do these suits use?

What is the fibre type?

Who makes them?

Where do all the materials come from?

What are the cost implications?


The suits I can think of now;

– Astronaut suit – Beekeeping suit -Diving suit – NBC Suit – Fire Proximity Suit

However before I look further into this I would like to look into Bark cloth further. This is because I am using wood right now within my textile project. I was looking for a wooden material that would be flexible enough to create certain aesthetics within my work.

Textile Innovation. Lecture One.

This lecture I began to learn innovative fibres from natural sources. Traditionally we use natural fibres to woven garments as clothing to later use textile specialisms to make them usable in our households or to sell for extra income.  But nowadays natural fibres are being used in various industries, for example in the clothing industry natural fibres such as cotton, linen, silk, and even banana fibre are used because of their lightweight and wear comfort. They are widely popular especially among foreigners.

Bast Fibres

Nettle fibres Ramie and Himalayan nettle

Several species of the nettle family (Urticaceae) produce bast fibres similar to flax

Derived from the inner Fibrous Stem. Incidentally there is no sting left in the extracted fibre.

  • The process of creating nettle textile when collecting the crop helps with environmental and social benefits for local native farmers and should be encouraged.
  • Health giving herbs like luobuima from china helps produce textile fibres plus it gives health benefits through remedies and medicines.
  • The common stinging nettle Urtica dioica, is a widely distributed plant that grows very easily on a damp disturbed ground. It has been used as fodder for livestock and to make tea, beer, rennet and plant dye.
  • Nettle fibres are white, silky and produced a thinner and silkier fabric than flax, so that it is possible that fine linens for the wealthy may have been woven from the nettle rather than flax.


Franz Xaver, (2009), A stinging nettle growing in a field [ONLINE]. Available at: [Accessed 07 November 14].

Hemp Fibres

  • Hemp is the common name for plants of the genus cannabis, but it is usually used to refer to cannabis strains cultivated for hemp fibre and for other non-drug use.
  • Hemp is versatile and every part is used
  • Natural strength, UV resistance, thermal properties and durability
  • Naturally renewable resource requires little agricultural assistance
  • Hemp is now being used in some denims and casual sports wear, interior and domestic textiles. In non-woven forms it is used for insulation in cars.


Barbetorte, (2007), La Roche Jagu chanvre 1 [ONLINE]. Available at: [Accessed 07 November 14].

Lotus Fibres

  • Creating the lotus fabric itself takes time and thoughtfulness as it takes approximately 32,000 lotus stems to make just 1.09 yards of fabric.
  • Stems are bunched sliced and snapped apart to expose its plant white fibres which are then left out to dry.
  • It has a sentimental value for all Buddhists.
  • When blended with cotton fibres they give a fabric of unique properties different from fabrics that can be used for garments or developed as various home utensils.
  • The surface is uneven with white lumps.
  • The fabric can be used for garments or developed as various home utensils.


Samatoa, (2013), The Process [ONLINE]. Available at: [Accessed 07 November 14].

Leaf Fibres

  • Comes from different plants such as agave, pineapple and banana.
  • From natural renewable resources
  • Naturally strong fibre
  • Very hard to process and weave.


Charles. F. Wood , (2001), Loin-cloth [ONLINE]. Available at: [Accessed 07 November 14].Bark Fibres

  • Bark Cloth wide range of textile. Manufactured with low energy and water consumption therefore barely any carbon footprint.
  • Once bark is stripped from the tree you then have to wait until next season to strip the tree again to create fabric.
  • The bark is beaten to help create its fabric aesthetics and properties.
  • Fragile textile due to being highly flammable non water-retardant and marks easily.

Seed and Hair Fibres


Cotton Fibres

  • A commercial seed hair fibre. The fibre is most often spun into yarn or thread and used to make a soft, breathable textile.
  • The cotton industry relies heavily on chemicals, such as herbicides, fertilisers and insecticides, although a very small number of farmers are moving toward an organic model of production, and organic cotton products are now available for purchase at limited locations.
  • All natural cotton products are known to be both sustainable and hypoallergenic.


Abigail Doan , (2010), Crailar Organic Fibers [ONLINE]. Available at: [Accessed 07 November 14].

Kapok Fibres

  • Kapok also called Java cotton, ceiba, or Java kapok,  seed-hair fibre obtained from the fruit of the kapok tree or the kapok tree
  • Kapoks do not bloom every year, and some may go 5–10 years without flowering.
  • Kapok is also used as stuffing for pillows, mattresses, and upholstery, as insulation material, and as a substitute for absorbent cotton in surgery.
  • This fibre is obtained from husks of the fruit of the coconut palm. It’s mainly produced in india and sri Lanka. The fruits are broken by hand or machine.
  • The fibres are used in upholstery, cordage, fabrics, mats and brushes.

Kapok Fiber blob-

July emery, (2001), Kapok blob [ONLINE]. Available at: [Accessed 07 November 14].

Paper Fibres

  • Paper is a fibrous material prepared by chemically or mechanically separating cellulose fibres from wood, fibre crops or waste paper.
  • Using wood to make paper is a fairly recent innovation. Paper making using cotton and linen fibres spread to Europe in the 13th century.


Elizabeth-Anne Haldane , (1995), untitled [ONLINE]. Available at:!-tapesty-washing-at-the-v-and-a/ [Accessed 07 November 14].

Peat Fibres

  • Thermal properties, UV Resistant, Antiseptic with natural antiseptic properties.
  • Renewable
  • Biodegradable
  • Peat fibres are made from the leaves and stems of cotton grass. The white seed heads of the cotton grass plant have been used to stuff pillows and cushions but it is unsuitable for spinning.
  • The production of peat fibre is complex and an expensive process but the shortage of the other materials during world war one resulted in it being used to make uniforms and bandages in Germany.


Unknown, (2013), Pleat Fabrics [ONLINE] Available at: [Accessed 07 November 14].

Horse Hair Textiles


  • Textile artist Marianne Kemp specialises in weaving horse hair. Each piece has a unique character from her unconventional weaving techniques and combination of the texture colour and movement.
  • Horsehair fabrics are woven with wefts of tail hair from live horses and cotton or silk warps. Horsehair fabrics are sought for their lustre, durability and care properties and mainly used for upholstery and interiors.
  • Horsehair is a protein fibre that absorbs water slowly, but can be dyed or coloured effectively using traditional dyes suitable for protein fibres. It can be felted, but not easily.


Jim Sauchyn, (1998), untitled [ONLINE]. Available at: [Accessed 07 November 14].

Metal Fibres

  • Aluminum, copper and steel.
  • Functional aesthetic as it memorizes predetermined shape and reacts to heat.
  • They are conductive, can assist in protecting against electromagnetic radiation, and are detectable by radar and heat seeking devices.
  • Silver is naturally antibacterial.


Teressa Rose Ezell, (2007), untitled [ONLINE]. Available at: [Accessed 07 November 14].

Bio Fibres

Biotechnology- application of living organisms and their components to industrial products and processes is not an industry in itself, but an important technology that will have a large impact on many different industrial sectors in the future.

Stretch Fibres

  • In high performance sportswear, stretch garments ply an important part in improving several aspects of an athlete’s performance including speed, stamina and strength.
  • Elastine (spandex), lycra and latex are all important stretch fibres.
  • They have great comfort and fit, and fewer wrinkles or bagging than their stretch-less counterparts.


Mark Pain , (2014), untitled [ONLINE]. Available at: [Accessed 07 November 14].

Latex Fibres

  • Milky white latex fluid collected from Pará rubber tree (Heveabrasiliensis),
  • The latex is a sticky, milky colour made by by making incisions into the bark and collecting the fluid in vessels in a process called “tapping”. The latex then is refined into rubber ready for commercial processing.
  • Latex rubber as a clothing material is common in fetish fashion and among BDSM practitioners, and is often seen worn at fetish clubs. Latex is sometimes also used by couturiers for its dramatic appearance.


Kirn, P (2012), untitled [ONLINE]. Available at: [Accessed 07 November 14].

Plant Based Rubber

  • A plant based replacement to oil derived synthetic neoprene
  • Uses guayule plant- latex can be extracted and turned into rubber
  • Guayule: flowering desert shrub in the aster family, native to the southwestern United States and northern Mexico
  • Most rubber in man-made now, but researchers working to bring back eco-friendly processes
  • Potential alternative to petroleum-based synthetics that are now the predominant form of rubber in tyres and many other rubber products

Major Cellulose Fibres

Cellulose is a chemical substance that makes up around half of all solid material in the plant world. It is abundant and renewable, and is therefore an almost inexhaustible raw material resource.

  • Wool, Silk, Cotton, Bamboo, Wood are all examples of cellulose fibres.
  • Alginate- Seaweed healing properties from iodine content.
  • UV resistant
  • Has some absorbency and moisture management


  • Produced from brown seaweed. It also has healing properties from the iodine content.
  • Blended with cellulose fibres, fabrics are used in underwear that imparts anti-inflammatory and antiseptic benefits to the skin
  • In medical applications, non-woven alginate fibres hasten blood clotting and encourage healing on damaged skin.
  • They are used as non-woven burn and skin dresses.

Tallis 2

Greg Aronowitz, (2014), Tallis 2 [ONLINE]. Available at: [Accessed 07 November 14].

Man Made Synthetics

  • Polyethylene, PVC, Polypropylene and polyurethane are all forms of synthetics from non renewable oil-based resources.
  • All have a high strength, can be heat set and provide a wide variety of different products for industrial, medical, sports textiles.
  • Fibres and products can be recyclable.


Sarah Gores, (2014), Fabric [ONLINE]. Available at: [Accessed 07 November 14].


Abigail Doan , (2010), Crailar Organic Fibers [ONLINE]. Available at: [Accessed 07 November 14].

Barbetorte, (2007), La Roche Jagu chanvre 1 [ONLINE]. Available at: [Accessed 07 November 14].

Charles. F. Wood , (2001), Loin-cloth [ONLINE]. Available at: [Accessed 07 November 14].Bark Fibres

Elizabeth-Anne Haldane , (1995), untitled [ONLINE]. Available at:!-tapesty-washing-at-the-v-and-a/ [Accessed 07 November 14].

Franz Xaver, (2009), A stinging nettle growing in a field [ONLINE]. Available at: [Accessed 07 November 14].

Greg Aronowitz, (2014), Tallis 2 [ONLINE]. Available at: [Accessed 07 November 14].

Jim Sauchyn, (1998), untitled [ONLINE]. Available at: [Accessed 07 November 14].

Kirn, P (2012), untitled [ONLINE]. Available at: [Accessed 07 November 14].

Mark Pain , (2014), untitled [ONLINE]. Available at: [Accessed 07 November 14].

Samatoa, (2013), The Process [ONLINE]. Available at: [Accessed 07 November 14].

Sarah Gores, (2014), Fabric [ONLINE]. Available at: [Accessed 07 November 14].

Teressa Rose Ezell, (2007), untitled [ONLINE]. Available at: [Accessed 07 November 14].

Unknown, (2013), Pleat Fabrics [ONLINE] Available at: [Accessed 07 November 14].