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Title: Transitionary textiles : a craft-based journey of textile design practice towards new values and roles for a sustainable fashion industry
Author: Vuletich, Clara
ISNI:       0000 0004 7226 2261
Awarding Body: University of the Arts London
Current Institution: University of the Arts London
Date of Award: 2015
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The current fashion textiles industry is based on an outdated, exploitative system that encourages fast consumption, generates huge amounts of textile waste, creates toxic impacts to ecosystems and causes significant social impacts to production workers. The move towards a more sustainable industry is a complex challenge and will be based on circular and social systems that prioritise values, collaboration and empathy for the environment and all stakeholders. This research defines the move towards a more sustainable fashion textiles industry as a transition that operates across environmental, social, and human domains. At the human level, the transition is an emergent process that involves both ‘inner’ and ‘outer’ dimensions (Maiteny & Reed 1988). For fashion textile designers, this process will demand new ways to practice and engage with the sustainability agenda, including the ‘outer’ dimensions of better materials or more ethical production models; and the ‘inner’, reflective dimensions of values and the self. This research proposes new roles for designers in these transitionary contexts, through craft-based fashion textile design practice. The practice projects presented in the thesis demonstrate three new roles that evolve through the sustainable design continuum to the highest level of Design for Social Equity (Manzini & Vezzoli 2008), where designers will support all stakeholders towards systemic, sustainable change. The practice projects reveal a collaborative and inter-disciplinary approach to fashion textile design practice in industry, local communities and the global supply chain. The research draws on a range of literature from sustainability theory, design/craft thinking, and psychology. The mixed methodology includes an action–research phase of collaborative practice projects, facilitation of workshops with designers in industry, and a reflective phase of textile making and writing. A model for the Transitionary Textile Designer is presented as a final outcome. In order for fashion textile designers to practice in transitionary contexts ‘beyond the swatch’, the research presents new methods and tools to connect individual values to social values inherent in the transition towards sustainability.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Fashion History & Theory ; Clothing/Fashion Design