I feel i have learnt a variety of different concepts and facts throughout my Textile Innovation unit. I have always been interested in originality within design and always researching the new developments within the textile industry. The evolution of textiles is rising and showing its true potential. I wanted to investigate this further and broaden my knowledge within innovative textiles which is the main reason why i chose this unit subject.
I learnt the different fibre types and their individual properties, the different types of knitting, and the technological advancements that are additions to fibres and textiles. However, what stood out to me the most was how textiles can evolve human function further. Textiles can take humans to the next step whether it’d be a NASA protective spacesuit or an alginate based bandage. This research soon developed me onto bio-fibres, bacteria based materials such as human bacteria (and its ability to grow onto textiles) and Kombucha Bacteria Textiles. Showing how they can help us develop antibiotics as-well as being a no waste textile that naturally decomposes therefore making it a eco friendly textile. During my Textile innovation unit I learnt the important of eco friendly textiles and how the industry turns out so much wasteful textiles that harm our environment.
I feel i have explored my personal research well relating back to what i learnt within my lectures and to the designers and textiles that i had learnt about. I have used a variety of references from magazines to articles, journals, books, websites, videos and images. This allowed me to to openly explore my chosen subject matter and see the experiments and research that scientists, doctors and designers have done and relate it back to my own research findings, analysis and experiments. I also linked my own textile practice to my blog relating my own work to the lectures that i had and showing examples of some of the practices and fibres that were talked about. I also created my own experiment with human bacteria using Sonja Baumel as my inspiration, from this i learnt that natural fibres were a more successful ‘vessel’ to grow human bacteria than synthetic man-made fibres.
At first I personally found it difficult to find relevant research about bacteria textiles as it is a textile that is being developed. Suzanne Lee has gained attention for her bacteria textile recipe and has created textile fashionable pieces from this material. I also found it hard to experiment with it myself as I felt i didn’t give myself enough time or have the proper equipment (sensor and regulated heat) to fully develop this process and perhaps try suzanne Lee’s recipe myself. I would of loved to start dying the bacteria based textile using vegetable dye and worked with the translucency and colour of the textile itself.
Perhaps I could of experimented with the functionality of bacteria based textiles, perhaps i could of experimented and researched into how i could make it fire-resistant and waterproof to make it less fragile and more sustainable to environmental variables. This would give me more of a personal understanding with the material and perhaps develop the bacteria based textile innovation further.
Overall I feel I have worked hard and explored my personal research well. Using reflective questioning and analysis to take me further in my research as well as gaining knowledge into the innovative possibilities of bacteria based textiles. I have used the idea of bacteria within my own textile practice. I have begun to create my own research and use the appearance of bacteria to develop my work through, colour texture and shape. I feel that Textile Innovation has opened my eyes to the possibilities within textiles. It has also taught me to ‘think outside the box’ and to experiment more with my textiles to create something new and innovative.
Some of my own experiments developing and manipulating human bacteria by mixing it with alginate ‘jelly’, acid and vegetable dyes: