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Title: Block pattern adaptation for Greek female adolescents with scoliosis of the spine : an investigation into the feasibility of incorporating body shape asymmetry into sizing systems to improve garment fit
Author: Tsakalidou, Maria D.
ISNI:       0000 0004 5916 8879
Awarding Body: University of the Arts London
Current Institution: University of the Arts London
Date of Award: 2016
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Scoliosis of the spine is defined as a side-to-side deviation from the normal frontal axis of the body resulting in body asymmetry, and as a complex, three-dimensional and multifaceted deformity, not only affects a female adolescent’s appearance - fit, usability and appearance of clothing - but can also compromise her health and ability to function. Scoliosis affects at least 2.9% of the population in Greece, appearing particularly among children aged 8-14 years, and more frequently in girls (9 girls for 1 boy). This study traces previous initiatives and current provision for clothing people with divergent body figures, exploring issues at the intersection of human anatomy and fashion, while it takes place in Greece, starting with measuring procedures specifically adapted for body asymmetry that comply with the appropriate code of ethics. External body measurements provide non-invasive evaluation of changes in external asymmetry due to scoliosis, while analysis of the measurements related to the trunk can document the asymmetry arising from the different types and degrees of spinal curvature, providing a 3D classification of scoliotic deformities. Both right and left body halves of 75 females aged 16-22 years of age, diagnosed with Adolescent Idiopathic Scoliosis (AIS), are measured in order to register their different body shapes and to classify them in different scoliotic groups, according to the magnitude and type of their scoliosis. The asymmetric basic pattern blocks derived from the median body measurements for each scoliotic group will be more tolerant of bodies with scoliosis, providing a better garment fit than conventional symmetrical patterns. These new ‘blocks’ will have the potential to be used in mass production, after the development of sizing systems based on body asymmetry, whereby an ‘aesthetic’ and an ‘ethical’ dimension in design could be then incorporated. Applying auto-ethnography, as well as using participant observation and interviewing methods, this research will help gain a deeper understanding of the culture and the needs of the specific target group. Future challenges relate to design perspectives of fashionable clothing for females with non-standard body dimensions, with particular emphasis on scoliosis, having potential for wider application in mass customised apparel for scoliosis.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Fashion Design (Womenswear) ; Disability in Society