I used some different fabrics to do the test model like felt, canvas and some fabric ( I don't know the name ). I think It will be better If I make my product softer, which can let the customer feel more comfortable. So I decide to sew some cotton into it like quilt. Because It is too soft to keep the construction, so I used the thin felt fabric to cover outside of the normal fabric. I also tried other kinds of fabric too, but the other fabrics are not suitable for my design.
I was thinking about the joint of my product. I decided to maybe use the cloth button and thread to connect them together.
I was thinking about the material I should use for the connecting part of my design. I used the cloth button to try it. I also research a lot of different materials like rubber, cord rope and leather and so on. I think I will use plastic to make the button shape, if I cannot find the proper size.
I asked my friend to lay down naturally on the paper and draw the outer contour of him. Then I measured the length and the width My product may need to be. I think I will go for maybe between 160 cm to 170 cm which is the average height of people .
I talked to tutor Kathleen she told me to think about sew my model like quilting. I can sew more lines on my product to make it fold naturally instead of folded by hand, which will make this more interesting. I need to think about what kind of material I should work with and I may need some help with the sewing skills. I need to consider how to sew the lines on this mattress things.
Tutor told me maybe add some quilting on these design to make it better. For example, sometimes if you make some quiltings, which can change the folding angle of this product. I used some cotton to put underneath the fabric and sew it. But I found out It was quite slippery when I was sewing it. The cotton kept moving when I was sewing it.
After I talking to technician in the KX stitch workshop, she recommended me to buy some materials like polyester wadding, upholstery and polyester needle. Because this kind of material could be sewed and also not moving quite a lot like normal cotton material. I used the sponge to put underneath two fabric layers and sew some quilting spot. I think sponge felt pretty soft and comfortable, especially when they are covered by the silk fabric .
I went to Shepherd bush market to buy some fabrics and the buttons I need. After I showed these fabrics to our tutors, they said the colour of these fabrics are quite dark, It was quite boring. I may need to do some research like donna wilson furniture welsh rugs labour patrica urquiola furniture hella jongerius fabric to look at their work. How they explore the fabric to make it more special. I can also go to some vintage market or buy some unique fabric or use some old blankets.
We had an induction of using industrial sewing machine, which can be used to sew the leather, felt or any kinds of materials.
I went to KX stitch workshop to make some test models.
I try to sew some quilting lines on that to find out if these quiltings will make the blanket folded by themselves naturally without fold by ourselves. I found out that If I sew two or more quilting lines in the middle of this blanket, which will make the blanket folded a little bit, changed some folding angles. The more and narrow I sew on the blanket, the more angles I may got. But I found out sometimes even I tried to sew more lines in the middle part of it, but the angles not changed too many. Maybe because of the material still has limitations. I found out that If I sew two many lines in the middle part of the product, It will become harder to fold it. I think I need to rethink about should I sew some lines on it or where should I sew it.
Technician told me if I want to make some quilting spot on this product then I need to use some buttons to sew by hands on that spot, which is because If I just sew with thread, It will become not strong enough to support the weight of people when they are sitting on them. These buttons could be covered by fabrics which can also solve the aesthetic problems caused by sewing by hands the spot will become messy and not look very nice. The technician showed me how to do it. First I need a piece of small fabrics and use needle and thread to sew the edge rounded and then put a button in it. Then, I tight them together like pulling a rope of the drawstring bag. The button will be covered by the fabric and then sew it on the product with the other button which could be transparent one on the back of the blanket. Connecting them together then It would be stronger.
Some problems I found during I was sewing this. I found out that If the fabric I cut for the buttons is too big then It will cause some uneven and ugly sewing point. And also, If the fabric is hard one ( thick) also will cause that part not look nice. It will be better to use some soft fabric. And the technician suggested me to use smaller stitch gaps and maybe use other kinds of stitch lines like z shape line, because it could be more stable, not stretchy.
I cut some fabrics from some second hand clothes. I cut a circle shape polyester wadding to put into the upholstery model.
What kind of problem I got?
I had some problems that I don't know how to close the left open part of this model. I tried different ways to sew them together, but the sewing part looked not very nice.
Another problem was that this is a 1 to 5 scale model, so the sewing became even harder. Part of my product need a hole to let the button go through, but after I cut the hole on the surface of the test model, I found the cutting part was pretty rough, I was trying to sew them nicer, but It was too fragile, which was hard to get some nice detailed sewing. I think I need help from the technician.
When I was doing research about Donna Wilson, I was inspired by the pattern of Donna Wilson’s Design. I was thinking what should my design look like, after I saw these cute and interesting patterns and colours of these products. It inspired me that I can add a quirky and interesting human shape animal on the back of the sleeping blanket. When people use this blanket product to cover themselves , which will look like a human shape animal is hugging themselves. If people fold it as a chair then from the back of this product, it will look like this animal is hugging people.
Because I think this product looks too simple, I want to redesign the appearance of this design. I tried to sew some edges on this design. The first time I just sew two different fabrics together , but I found the edge of this fabric looks quite rough and not pretty. Then I fold the edge a little bit and then fold them together, which was quite hard, I think I need some help from technician. After I putting some polyester between two fabrics, I found It was quite hard to sew them together.
I found that when I was sewing the edge of it, which always drag lot of fabric (white part), so I decided to cut the quilting smaller and then I tried it again.
After changing sewing method
I was making the quilting button.
I was thinking whether I should add some quilting lines on the surface of that blanket product. Because tutor said maybe these lines can make the product fold by itself. I tried and found out although these lines cannot make it fold but when I fold it, which could stay the shape.
PROBLEM I FOUND
I found that these button could help the model hold it shape, but also change the shape a lot, especially the back side which looked not very nice. I think I only need two buttons on the down side. The two buttons on the upside will make this product too hard to fold to become a chair shape.
I had a tutorial with Kathleen today in KX. She thought my final model need to be perfect finished. The test model I had now is rough and need to be finished better. For example, the edge of my test model is rough, the fabric was wrinkle, which looked not very professional sewing. She said I can apply bias binding or some darts to these fabrics to make it flatter.
Another problem she said that like the button on the back side. I didn't sew it nice and clearly. I also need to sew the detail perfectly. About the fabric, I may need to go to some fabric stores to have a look.
I went to some fabric shops in Walthamstow. It was still really hard for me to choose the fabric and find the right material. I bought some buttons, fabrics, bias binding
I had a tutorial with Tom. He said the fabric of my design was to slippy, especially the white fabric, too shiny and looked cheap. He gave a really good advice that for the joining part I could use toggle instead of button.
Then I also talked to Georgia about my test model. She said similar thing as well. The fabric I got was slippy, shinny, which made this product look cheap. Because my design is really simple, it needs to be done better. She also said the fabric I got from the market was too cute, these pattern will make this product look too cheap and comic way.
I went to the shop tutor recommended called rolls & rems. She asked me to look at some natural fabrics like cotton. It should be plain, no stretch. Some fabrics like canvas, drill, twill and thin denim. Maybe I could ask them to give me some samples of a range. Instead of covering the button by my self, I could buy some self covering buttons, which will help me sew my things look better and make it easier to be finished. About the toggle, I should make one by myself or I can buy one.
I went to stitch workshop in Archway today to ask for some help. I cut a circle shape about 40 cm by using paper first, and then I cut two circles on the black and white cotton drill fabric. I cut the wadding about half cm less and I used the long ruler to cut two strips of fabric in order to make bias binding.
What did I learn from today’s workshop?
The first thing I learned was that I know how to make good use of the paper to make sure I cut the fabric perfectly. What’s more, I also learned how to use the iron and how to make bias binding by myself. I learned lots of new sewing skills as well, for example how to sew bias binding, how to make the sewing line invisible after sewing.
I bought some 10.5 mm eyelet and tools set, I used some scrapes of fabrics to test if it will work. I tried different ways to add the eyelet to the fabric. The eyelet set had different tools. A tool can be used to cut through these fabrics, the only thing I need to do is follow the instruction to use hammer. If I didn't hit the hammer not strong enough, this tool will not cut these fabrics evenly. If I hit the hammer too hard, this tool will damage the protection pad I put under these fabrics.
After I did this model, I was thinking maybe I don't need to add the buttons on the front and the back, which was not very useful and also not very necessary. And I need to rethink about the connection part of my design, because the toggle button I got was a little bit too big to get through the eyelet.
When I ham the eyelet, I forgot to turn the right fabric side down. I search how to remove the eyelet from the fabric online. I used pliers to try to remove the wrong eyelet, which was really hard to band the metal part. Also, I had a quick talk with tutor Kathleen, I was thinking about connected point of my design.
I tried to make the toggle by myself, but when I tried to drill the hole on that, which will always break. When I was making the second one, I used smaller driller to drill the hole. Although smaller hole will not make this toggle break, the hole was too small for a rope to get through. Then I tried a bigger driller to drill the hole, when I press it to get through the wood piece, It broke.
I tried to make toggle clasp in the metal workshop. The first material I used in metal workshop was steel, which was really hard to bend it. I used tools to bend it to circle shape, when I want to join the steel, I used the joining machine to melt it together. Although this material will be really strong After I melt them together, the joining part looked really ugly, black and rough. I also polish it, but It was too rough. I talked to technician of metal workshop. He said that If I want the quality of these toggle clasps higher, then he suggested me to use brass this material, which jewellery students used quite a lot. This material can be joined perfectly. Technician said I can get a jewellery quality model if I use brass and fire and polish it. I also made the third final model today in stitch workshop.
I made the joining part by using brass this material in the metal workshop today. This material is much softer than steel and other materials. What’s more, I can join them together and without having an ugly joining part.
I had learned some skills from jewellery students and tutor Karla. I knew that If I used cutting tools to cut the brass bar, the cutting point will not be rough, which will be flat and can be joined perfectly. Then I can join them together nicely. Another thing was that If I preheat this material and then put it into water to cool it down, which will make this material become softer, then I can bend it to the shape I want easier.
After putting the joining point together, I need to put another kinds of metal on it, and then solder them together. I need to be really careful to control the temperature because If I fire too long, it will make the brass too soft or even melted.