Developing new hybrid structures

Hannah White

My PhD research involves collaborating with UK manufacturers to explore how my textile knowledge and haptic skills using three-dimensional textiles techniques can be combined with materials investigation, nanotechnology and industrial manufacturing. The aim is to develop new hybrid structures that take inspiration from ‘hard’ construction methods found within architecture and the ‘soft’ properties of textiles.

 

I have been awarded LDoc Student Development Funds towards enabling me to visit and sample at a UK weaving mill.

 

Hannah White at mill October 2016

Hannah White at mill October 2016

 

In my initial visit in May 2016 I had a meeting with the Technical Director to introduce him to my previous textile work and my concepts for my PhD sampling. After a very successful discussion, he agreed to help me explore my ideas using their power looms. It was very encouraging as he was intrigued by my samples and wanted to help enable me develop their potential.

 

My first sampling visit to a UK weaving mill in October 2016 was a key point within my research. It enabled me to plan a warp set up specifically for my designs, which provided me with the opportunity to test initial key ideas fully for the first time within the PhD.

 

Working directly with the technical staff at the mill and weaving on the power loom gave me an insight into the scope for what is possible using their equipment. Seeing the fabric woven in real time enabled me to explore new ideas on the loom and adapt my initial ideas in relation to the results. Working with the different yarn properties and loom capabilities helped me to push my ideas further whilst I was at the mill.

 

It has also enabled me to plan my next sample warps with greater technical understanding in relation to the industrial parameters. As a hand weaver it is important that I have a clear picture of what can be achieved with their specific power looms in relation to my research question. I was able to spend time with their Technical Director, exploring my ideas and discussing future samples. The experience was very rewarding and has focused my research aims and the textiles I intend to explore. I am very grateful to LDoc for providing me with the funds to carry out such a useful industrial visit.

 

View of looms at mill

View of looms at mill