The fashion industry is responsible for a great amount of waste, one of which are the remaining fabrics from the process of making garments. In this project, I am looking for a solution to solve that problem. The goal is to turn them, of different sizes, shapes, colors, and materials, into detachable pieces that celebrate the Aesthetics of Waste concept. The accessories will retain the signs of their former lives, but also add a fresh and new look to the garments they are on. This project, hopefully, will give a unique path for designers when it comes to fashion remnants.
The first idea for this project came from my love for details on clothing. I adore how designers pay attention to small features and how they can realize them very well. In the meantime, I had many small pieces of fabric. I figured why not utilize and change them into my beloved details? Because the majority of my deadstock came from past projects when I made garments, I did not want to make or redesign more clothes. Therefore, the end goal was to make removable accessories to decorate the clothes.
I started with an open mind and let my creativity guide me. Initially, I was going to explore every possibility of attaching tools: clips, pins, ties, etc. But, on a spur of the moment, I found ideas on a garment I made before. It was a ruffle detail beneath the button placket. I realized that I could focus on accessories with buttons and buttonholes. This concept is a highlight of the project because of its flexibility. The accessories can easily be put on and taken off, as well as mixed and matched as a collection. The only drawback is that they do not work on garments without buttons.
Details of the Prototype
Instead of sewing inside-out, I decided to add the hemline with a stitching feature on my sewing machine. I sewed the same color as the fabrics, as well as a different color to contrast. In some of them, I used a contrast thread to add on decorative features. I kept the ones with unique shapes the way they are but changed the rectangular ones into ruffles. On a long strip, I put eyelets as an embellishing element but also to loop in other strings. One common point is that they can function as a group, but each is an individual piece. I want them to be very separated to appreciate the natural shapes.
This photo shows how one piece can be put on the garment in any possible area. This purple one has a button at one end and a buttonhole at the other end, therefore, it performs better than others with only either.
This photo shows how they all work on the garment as a collection. There are many colors, but they go well with both white and pink. But furthermore, I want to send the message that, from useless pieces, offcuts can end up being displayed on new clothes. There are many things we can do with discarded fabrics that need to be explored.
This video shows how the collection works on a white shirt. Usually, this type of shirt is very formal and to be worn with slacks and a suit jacket. However, the accessories have added in a fun element and now the shirt is more interesting and easier to wear. The pop of colors also spices things up. Despite the difference in size, shape, and color, they go very well together. A highlight of the collection is that they are detachable, which gives the wearers an opportunity to customize their clothes according to the occasion and their moods. One can go to a conference in the morning and smoothly transfer to parties in the evening with these accessories.
Overall, this set of garment accessories is a good experiential outcome. Nevertheless, there is still much room for improvement. Ideally, fashion designers can get some ideas from this collection to make use of their fabric offcuts.