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Knit to fit: applying technology to larger-sized women's body shapes

By Victoria Haffenden


Knit to fit: applying technology to larger sized women’s knitwear for comfort and wellbeing\ud Larger women experience problems finding desirable clothing that fits; often experiencing humiliation and frustration in the process (Shabi, 2004: 26). Employing manual measuring and 3D body scanning in conjunction with a digitally enabled knitting system, 3D shaped knitwear has been developed to fit the individual body shape of a cohort of women over UK size 16. Wearer analysis proves that women value the prototype garment’s comfortable fit, which eliminates stitch distortion whilst reducing the drooping and folding commonly found in ‘outsize’ clothing (Myers McDevitt, 2004:246). This research employs a widely available Shima Seiki flat bed knitting machine in combination with an SDS1 programmer, creating accessible and transferable outcomes for all systems.\ud One of the unique aspects of this research is integrating design with technical knitting skills so that reproduce-able garments are developed with full cognisance of the manufacturing process. Once the research is completed, the template library of schemata will have international commercial value. As knitting principles are common, and a universal colour coded language is used, a contribution will be made to the development of a successful dialogue between knitwear designer and technician (Eckert, 1999) towards bespoke or mass customised production.\ud Chapman proposes that consumer/product relationships may contribute to a more sustainable lifestyle (Chapman, 2005); it is possible that custom fitted garments may equally contribute in the clothing market. Additional anecdotal evidence, gathered through a survey carried out during the research, suggests that larger women are keen to embrace a fresh approach to clothing for their size.\ud \ud \ud \u

Topics: W230 Clothing/Fashion Design, J900 Technology not classified elsewhere
Year: 2009
OAI identifier: oai:eprints.brighton.ac.uk:7084
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