I came upon this today – scary isn’t it !
New Technology is replacing us weavers ……
Unlike 3D Printing, 3D Weaving Uses
Old Techniques for Futuristic Forms
Jim Chen-Hsiang Hu’s graduation collection at Central St. Martins takes a close look at fashion’s most basic element, thread, and turns it into a malleable material with height, width and depth. Unlike in 3D printed clothing, Chen-Hsiang Hu’s collection moves into 3D territory without a clear jump off point.
On his website, he describes his creativity as “Dedicated to design and techno development.” His “Xi” collection pieces were all done in red, with laser-cut fabric that blend naturally into shapes that extend the human form. The cut-outs of the flat fabrics seem to predate the 3D forms, forming dark shadows that accentuate the protrusions. The designer won the L’Oreal Young Talent Award for his work on 3D weaving.
3D weaving is a minority in the world dominated by additive manufacturing. Instead of working on a shape layer-by-layer, 3D weaving requires special looms (Chen-Hsiang Hu used a bespoke one) and the shapes are built axis by axis. His collection was made with a combination of thread and resin.
However, automation in the complicated process isn’t impossible. Oluwaseyi Sosanya has developed a 3D weaver that created materials with high impact resistance and auxetic properties. As proof-of-concept, Sosanya has used his weaver’s output as soles of shoes.
Despite the familiar 3D quality, printing and weaving have distinctly different approaches. Weaving shares a deeper connection with fashion. It is manufactured in a loom and requires the repetitive intertwining of thread, not different from manufacturing traditional textile. Printing, on the other hand, is more industrial in the melting of the raw material and the mechanical whir of layer-by-layer printing.
The future of 3D printing in fashion are fueled by obvious benefits: bespoke shapes, ease of manufacturing and range. But alongside it is 3D weaving, a more complex process, but with a lot of interesting characteristics like auxetic-ness, texture, and varying strength that all function while keeping the fundamental form of thread intact.