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Why is Fabric Choice Critical in Fashion Design?

submitted on 20 June 2020 by

The choice of fabric has a significant effect on fashion designing. The designer should have a deep understanding of the inherent qualities and characteristics of different types of fabrics. A designer needs to know the material that will be suitable to a particular occasion, purpose, or age. You donít want to use a thick and stiff fabric for a design that drapes in the same way that you donít want to use a soft and light fabric if your design calls for something with structured shape and volume.

Manufacturer's specifications
Fabric manufacturers provide the specifications for each type of fabric they produce. The information assists the designer in determining the fabric's limitations so they can choose the right material for their prototype. Some millers work with designers to come up with new fabric lines according to the season. They often collaborate to produce new and innovative fabrics with unique fabric blends, textures, weaves, and colours. They even think of modern printing techniques. All the things they do are intended to come up with a seasonal theme that can dictate the fashion direction for the year or the season.

Choosing the right fabric
Fashion designing is not just about the clothes worn by models during fashion shows. Fashion design concerns apparel and accessories for people, from infants to adults. Therefore, the fashion designer must choose the right fabric for each particular purpose and type of consumer.

Designers consider textures, finishes, fibre blend, colours, weight, cost, availability, and functionality as some of the top features to look for when they design clothes. Finding the right fabric gives an apparel definition.
  • When designing infant clothing, the primary consideration is the comfort of babies. Since they have sensitive skin, their outfit should be comfortable and soft. For infant wear, the designerís top choice is cotton. Babies can wear cotton clothes first before they wear clothes made of wool in winter.
  • Toddlers and pre-school kids are more active, so they need clothes made from fabrics with more elasticity. Fabrics should be tougher, to fight against wear and tear, yet allow them to move with ease. Young children love clothes with bright colours and fascinating prints.
  • Working adults need clothes that can last them from morning until evening. Fabrics should withstand creases and must be absorbent. Ideal materials for adults are cotton, thin cambric, and poplin.
  • For fashion apparel, designers should consider how the fabric functions. If the design calls for the dress to drape on the wearer, the base fabric should be light and soft. The designer should consider how the base fabric is going to work with other fabrics that may be used as accents or to give the dress a bit of body.
  • If the outfit needs form and body, the fabric should be firmer, stiffer or heavier, depending on the design, so that it can hold its shape.
Fashion designers have to consider not only the fabric to use when designing clothes. They should also consider the affordability of the garment.
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