Week 11./ Thermoplastics

“A thermoplastic fiber has the property of softening or fusing when heated and of hardering again when cooled. With the application of heat and pressure, it can be molded and remolded.”

Process photos


Challenges, learning points and application

Thermoplastic, although time consuming, is another interesting technique that produce a very beautiful result. With the application of heat and pressure, it can be moulded and remoulded. This can be both an advantage and a disadvantage. lt is advantageous because in fabrics made of thermoplastic fibers, certain features like pleats can be made permanent through heat-setting. However, because of their sensitivity to heat plenty of care must be taken in drying und ironing fabrics made of thermoplastic fibers.

Week 9./ Fiber etching and Bleaching

Fiber etching
Removing fibers from fabric

“Devore is the removal of fibers from the surface of a fabric using a chemical called sodium bisulfate. This chemical eats away the cellulose fibers in that fabric, leaving the synthetic and protein fibers untouched”

Fiber etch

Material needed:
– Blended fabric
– Dust Mask
– Fiber etch
– Brushes or Silkscreen printing set
– Iron

– Secure fabric to workspace
– Apply Fiber etch to fabric using silkscreen or brush
– Allow fiber etch to dry thoroughly
– When dried, sandwich the fabric between 2 baking paper before Ironing ( Fiber Etch can stick to the iron and ruin the iron surface)


Process photos

Challenges, learning points and application

I feel that Fiber etching is the more difficult to control technique out of all, most of my fiber etching sample end result either have holes because I put in too much fiber etch at some part or some parts the fiber doesn’t even come off. I guess Fiber etching is not a technique that I’ll explore further as I have the least interest in it.

Removing colors from fabric

Process photos


Week 8./ Thermochromic ink transfer

Thermochromic ink transfer
Thermochromic ink can change from colourless to colourful or colourful to colourless very quickly with temperature

” Thermochromic inks or dyes are temperature sensitive compounds, developed in the 1970s, that temporarily change color with exposure to heat. They come in two forms, liquid crystals and leuco dyes.”

Material needed:
Thermochromic Pigment Powder
– Container
– Paintbrush
– Acrylic Paint
Acrylic transparent gloss medium
– Fabric (Light coloured)
– Silkscreen set

– Mix equal amount of acrylic transparent gloss medium and thermochromic pigment powder in a container
– Apply the mixture onto the fabric with silkscreen or brush
– Wait for the paint to naturally dry
– Apply heat on fabric to see results

Process photos

Challenges, learning points and application

I find thermochromic ink transfer one of the most cool and fascinating technique. It is also one of the simpler techniques. If there were one thing difficult, that would be applying the paint evenly with the silkscreen set. Overall, thermochromatic ink transfer can produce captivating results and I am glad that I am able to try it out in class!

Week 7./ Knitting and Crochet

Manipulating yarn to create a textile or fabric

“Knitting creates multiple loops of yarn, called stitches, in a line or tube. Knitting has multiple active stitches on the needle at one time. Knitted fabric consists of a number of consecutive rows of interlocking loops. As each row progresses, a newly created loop is pulled through one or more loops from the prior row, placed on the gaining needle, and the loops from the prior row are then pulled off the other needle.”

The first tutorial video I watched to learn how to knit! 

Process photos

Thinner yarn

Crocheting Metal

Challenges, learning points and application

One learning point from knitting and crocheting is patience. I feel that knitting and crocheting is quite a therapeutic activities. I would definitely do them during my free time and make pretty things to keep! One interesting thing that I want to master at is crocheting metal. Hopefully, with more practices in the future, the result will look nicer!

Week 6. /Smocking and Shirring

Securing finely pleated or folded fabric with a decorative stitch

“Smocking was prominent in the 18th and 19th centuries because of its ability to stretch. Prior to the advent of elastic, this was the only way to secure large amounts of fabric while still allowing for movement for the body.”

Direct Smocking

Material needed:
– Smocking pattern paper
– Fabric
– Needles
– Scissors
– Thread

– Select a grid pattern
– Mark the dotted pattern on the back side of the fabric (Try not to use permanent ink pen)
– Following the stitching path shown in the pattern, draw the needle and thread through.
– Stitch the points together and secure them with a small stitch.
– Cut the thread and continue until the pattern is complete

Reference: http://kaliwan.tistory.com/entry/How-to-do-Canadian-Smocking 

Process photos

Challenges, learning points and application

 In modern days, smocking has become a decorative statement rather than a functional one. Indeed, I also find smocking a technique which produces very stunningly beautiful result if you do it well. One challenge for me is to sew at the right spot, as I sew more and more and the fabric becomes more crumpled, it is quite difficult for me to determine where to sew and often I end up with a messy pattern. I guess with more practices, I should become more meticulous and precise in sewing in order not to end up with disastrous work.

Final outcome


Creating fabric that is contracted into a smaller size when gathered along multiple rows of stitching 

“Shirring was first developed to gather large pieces of fabric to fit snuggly against the body. It is especially useful around necklines and cuffs because it stretched over the body and then fits snuggly against it with sliding or pulling.” 

Basic/Elastic Shirring

Materials needed:
– Fabric 
– Elastic Thread
– Sewing Machine
– Elastic Bands

– Determine how long you want the final piece to be and add seam allowances to all edges if possible.
– Plan a pattern of lines (or you can skip this step)
– Stitch along the lines with the sewing machine and elastic thread, straight stitches or zigzag stitch
– When done, hold the threads on one end of the fabric, using the other hand, draw the fabric towards the secure threads.
(For elastic shirring, insert the elastic band between 2 pieces of fabric before stitching)

Process photos

Challenges, learning points and application

Shirring is one of the easiest and least time-consuming technique so far. Just like smocking, shirring also produces beautiful results. If there has to be one thing hard about this technique, I would say that is to determine the amount of fabric needed in the first place such that when the fabric is shirred, it does not become too small in size.

Final outcome

Trends in products; Trip to Harvey

Trends In Products


I would say one of the difficult things for a designer is to make a product look coherent, even the details like buttons should echo with the overall form. (One of the difficulties I face when designing the toy for the major project is also blending the crank into the overall form.)

Some of the more attractive product designs I saw:
From a hair dryer to electric fan, all of them have a very simple and minimal form. Nowadays, people wants to see as much functions in a minimal structure as possible. Minimalism is the ultimate sophistication. Minimalism is beauty.

Less edges, more curves

To add on, many of the products also have an organic form with more curvatures and less edgy sides. Their clean and smooth surface attracts customers to touch it.

Read more about Minimalism in Design here

Old is new.

The idea of creating new products with a style similar to a style from the past is quite an irony and it apparently has become an in-thing right now. The use of softer pastel colors captures the attention of customers, and by using nostalgia appeals to them through emotions and sentimentality. In a sense, these products focus more on the emotional factors.

Read more about Nostalgia in Design here


Acting for film: Character Development (2)

Backstory: A singer, Shannon, found out from the doctor that she is slowly losing her sense of hearing. However, she has a very important performance coming up soon. That performance marks her debut as a singer. She waited very long for it and wants to do it very badly and so she tries to hide her condition from others. The scenario starts in the studio where Shannon is practicing for the performance as usual and her vocal coach, Dave, slowly starts to notice something unusual about her voice and tune.

Props: Mic for Shannon, Laptop to play background music, Printed Lyrics

Outfit: Smart casual

Shannon: Positive, independent, high self-esteem, perfectionist. 

Dave: Harsh on the outside, soft on the inside. 

The script: Script for DF2010



Week 5. /Applique

Attaching another fabric or patch to the surface of another fabric.

“Appliques have been used in various ways in many different cultures – all of which achieve distinct effects.The chosen patterns depended on the purpose of the garments and the natural resources available.


Material needed:
– Fabric
– Scissors
– Thread
– Sewing machine

– Create a design and cut out the pattern pieces from a piece of fabric
– Place the small fabric on a base fabric on a sewing machine.
– Begin at one corner of the design and stitch around, making sure that edges of the patch are completely covered with the thread.
Tip: The edge of the fabric should be in the center of the presser foot.

Process photos

Challenges, learning points and application

I feel that applique is one of the hardest technique to master, other than knitting. In order to make an applique looks nice, it requires a lot of skills, imagination and also control over the sewing machine. The biggest challenge I face while doing applique is to make sure that the thread aligns with the edge of the fabric. However, I find it interesting if I could use patchwork technique to make a quilt to present the processes. 

Final outcome