Category: - Cultural Tech-Fusion Fabrics

Cultural Tech-Fusion Fabrics

 
 
Back in February I found this San Francisco Bay Area wind visualization application by Nick Thompson and knew that I wanted to incorporate his tool in some way into one of the fusionwear sv textiles. It is mesmerizing and beautiful to watch this application. Below is the wind patterns on June 10th, 2010 at 3:00pm.
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I traced each green line in Illustrator and then opened the file in Photoshop to create the textile pattern below. I also used imagery drawn from Middle Eastern garments, Mexican textile patterns, Chinese patterns, Japanese motifs and Indian motifs.
I was fortunate enough to correspond with Nick Thompson and he recommended this site to me: Taprats . This is an application which creates interesting Islamic star patterns. I also found Glambient fascinating. It takes patterns and morphs them into other patterns.
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color palette extracted from image submission to fusionwear sv
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Various ethnic patterns pulled from submissions float like pollen
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Mexican medallion plate at San Jose Berryessa Flea Market.
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Detail of Mexican plate
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Motif the Mexican plate inspired
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detail on sleeve from garment at Hijab Corner. Inspiration for motif in this textile.
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Detail on Chinese garment of hisotrian Connie Young Yu
 
Last week I visited the Al-Huda Bookstore and Hijab Corner in Santa Clara to photograph their rich textiles and garments. The store graciously permitted me to photograph.

Women wearing hijabs and flowing long abayas are part of our textile landscape  in Santa Clara County. At my son and daughter's school in Cupertino I am often admiring the lovely  scarf and dress ensembles of the Muslim moms. I have yet to ask one if I can photograph her, though. While I find it only a little awkward asking a Chinese or an Indian mom to photograph her in her ethnic clothing, I find it much more difficult to approach a Muslim mom and ask to photograph her clothing. I think this has much to do with the fact that their clothing is rooted in the desire to be modest.

So, I was grateful to have the opportunity to photograph up close the garments in Hijab Corner. I will also be photographing Middle Eastern Muslim women on the streets as part of this project (I have a few images of one in a Korean market in Sunnyvale). I feel it is important to document the living textiles, the garments people wear about in their daily lives. But this was a good start for me.
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One of many styles of hijabs I saw at the store.
I had never thought of the flat pattern designs of the hijab, nor did I know there were so many versions of this head wear.  The above is a simple flat pattern design. Some of the others were more more complex and used a variety of materials in one hijab.
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textile detail
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A long elegant hijab
The gold embroidered headband is a separate piece.
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Calvin Klein pattern
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Hijab with an airy open pattern
Above: I wish I could have seen this one on someone. I liked the contrast between the white open dot fabric and the solid black fabric.
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Hijab packaging label
Having spent the early part of my career as a graphic designer, I am very interested in packaging. The graphics on hijab packaging need to appeal to women as they are the  purchasers of this garment. So it is interesting to see these two depictions of women on hijab packaging.
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Hijab packaging label
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A Jilbab. A women's overcoat.
Most of these garments above are made in Pakistan and Jordan. The embroidery is really interesting.  Feeling the weight of the fabric, I couldn't help thinking that it would be quite hot wearing these here in the summer, let alone in the heat of the Middle East.
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Above: I never knew that this product existed.  In Cupertino I have seen white arm  sleeves on Chinese women who want to protect themselves  from the sun, but these arm sleeves serve to protect the arms from public view.  I don't believe I have seen anyone wearing these.
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Men's shirt. Lovely embroidery contrasts nicely with the stripe pattern