Test Pattern

Speculative textile collection, 2017

Crumpling a piece of paper into a ball is impossible to do in the same way twice. The way in which your hands maneuver the paper from a flat piece into a small sphere is impossible to be replicated. The pattern of folds on the paper’s surface is therefore always unique, giving rise to a random arrangement in every act of crumpling. Creating randomness within textile design is often a difficult feat, as the human brain relies on its impressive pattern-recognition ability to make sense of the world. The crumpling of paper and its creation of ‘perfect’ randomness lends itself to a unique method of designing textiles.

I began by taking observations the physicality of crumpling an A4 piece of printer paper. Uncovered were the many unconscious decisions I made when handling paper, contrasting with that of handling fabric. There was much to learn from a simple action which is often performed without thought. Throughout a semester of material-led research, I explored the action and concept of crumpling through textile design. I experimented with substrate, print, dye, stiffeners, adhesive, light, and temperature.

Test Pattern resulted in 10 final speculative textiles (pictured right). Each explored the action of crumpling, and together they make up a progression between a crumpled paper ball and textile. Some physically mimic a piece of crumpled paper (#4), wheras some only carry its trace (#1). Some carry a printed pattern replication of the original paper (#2), wheras some use the unique method of crumpling to impart organic and beautiful shapes (#10).