Textiles Facilities

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Come with second-year Textiles students Hannah and Eleanor as they take you on a tour around our Textiles facilities in our Parkside building.

Fashion and textiles refers to the design, creation, and production of clothing and other wearable items and the fabrics and materials used to make them. This includes all aspects of the fashion industry, from the initial design and creation of garments to their marketing and selling to consumers. It also includes using textiles and fabrics in a wide range of products, such as home furnishings, automotive interiors, and industrial products. The field encompasses many disciplines, including design, textile science, engineering, business, and marketing.

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[00:00:04] Speaker 1 Hi, guys. We're just stood outside the building, which is the home of fashion textiles here at BCU.  


[00:00:10] Speaker 2 Would you like to follow us and we'll show you around. We're in the constructed knit and weave room. And one of the facilities that we do have is this rug gun and the canvas. So you can create different patterns, textures, like of these here, you can use different colours 


[00:00:47] Speaker 1 So now in the weave room, we're just going to show you the hand looms. These are some of the things that you can create from the looms. Obviously, this one is very practiced and someone has put a lot of time and effort into that.  


[00:01:01] Alongside yarns, you can also use other fabrics such as a paper or straw in an example. Hannah is just about to show you. But to start off with this can be very daunting as not many people have seen a hand loom before or experienced it - I knew I hadn't 


[00:01:16] Now I'm doing my pathway weave, which is something I never thought I would do. So this is Hannah just doing a plain weave over here, which is one of the first waves you learn. However, you don't have to stick to this. It's quite free. You can do whatever you want. And if you want to learn a certain pattern, the technicians are always on hand to help. So we're just going to take you over to the Jacquard Looms now.  


[00:01:39] Speaker 2 We do have these really cool Dobby Looms. So these are more for, like, your complex structures, your patterns, colours, though it is partly computerised, so it is a bit easier, but it's really, really cool. I love these.  


[00:01:56] Speaker 1 These are our Jacquards. They're all computer aided, so you can design your own drawings and with the help of the technicians pop them onto the computer.  


[00:02:06] Speaker 2 I love this.  


[00:02:07] Speaker 1 Yeah, this is a nice one.  


[00:02:09] Speaker 2 I think this is one is inspired by water. And it was just the way that they use the crystals. It just gives that bit more texture, embellishment.  


[00:02:17] So here we have the Dubier machines. They are fine gauge and these are amazing. They get you ready for industry if knit is what you want to go into. So they're more for like, clothing, they're more delicate than the domestics.  


[00:02:32] Speaker 1 We're going to go to the print room now.  


[00:02:33] Speaker 2 Let's go.  


[00:02:35] Speaker 1 So this is our very busy print room. It's a very collaborative space. This is the room where we expose our screens for screen printing, where you can implement your own individual designs onto a screen.  


[00:02:49] Speaker 2 You get to use work with different scales, so you can use really small screens or you can use really large, large screens. You get taught this by technicians and by one another as well. So if you don't know anything about this, you do get the support. I think everyone's back to basics. So when you expose your screen, you can use all this space to do your designs. It kind of gets you ready for industry as well because you work with such large scale and space.  


[00:03:20] Speaker 1 So these are some of our current biomaterial samples. It's a really great workshop for experimenting, you can literally create whatever you feel necessary in terms of trying to create more sustainable fibres and fabrics.  


[00:03:34] Speaker 2 That's really cool 


[00:03:35] Speaker 1 Yeah. We have coffee, we have Argyle. There's so many different options that you can choose from besides the classic screen printing and the yarns and the fibres. It's a really new way of thinking, which is really exciting as a textile student to just get involved in just the back of the print room. We have the massive lab, which is where all the biomaterial samples can go. You can also get all your leaves from our Grow Garden and create samples like this one here.  


[00:04:01] Speaker 2 So these guys are doing natural dyeing, which is another kind of more sustainable way of approaching things. So Olivia here is doing some and it looks really cool. Like that one.  


[00:04:12] Speaker 1 Is just another alternative to the screen printing and the heat press.  


[00:04:16] Speaker 2 It's all about the experimenting as well, which is cool. And this is the heat press - it's really cool and we use this for sublimation. You can use large scale as well. So we use the digital printers in there and then this puts it onto fabric with a lot of heat.  


[00:04:40] Speaker 2 So here is the print room. So basically, this is all your digital prints. So you've got your digital printer there, you got your pigment print here, which goes straight onto fabric. And all of these we have got really good sponsorship from Epson. And we've also got the printer here that prints onto cotton. And Charlotte is using this natural printer and it's pretty cool. So, this is the dye room.  


[00:05:16] Speaker 1 This is where all the colour is created - wether you're a weaver, a printer, biomaterials embroiderer, anyone is welcome in here, and anyone can experiment with anything that they like.  


[00:05:27] Speaker 2 Like weavers. You can come in if there's a specific colour that you want or just want to try it - you can come from the weave into here and you can just go crazy. Yeah, it's a process, but it's very much trial and error and sometimes when it works, it's amazing. 


[00:05:40] Speaker 1 And so we're now on our way to the embroidery workshop.  


[00:05:46] Speaker 2 These are some of the past students work and they're amazing, like the styles, the scale, and these are some competition winners. So we really look forward to that at the end of our third year.  


[00:05:56] Speaker 1 It's very inspirational as you walk across. You can also see the Grow Garden out there as well.  


[00:06:01] Speaker 2 Yeah. So with all the natural dyeing, we've got our own plants and resources from the uni. 


[00:06:15] Speaker 1 This is the embroidery workshop where everyone comes in here with a different skill set to start off with. You might have never touched a sewing machine before or hand embroidered, and we have different workshops like this one over here that's just taking place as a tamba beading workshop, which it's really interesting to watch the process of this one.  


[00:06:36] Speaker 2 I can imagine not many people would have that skill, so it really makes you different.  


[00:06:40] Speaker 1 Yeah. And then you can get all these different ranges of samples - just from the tamba beading alone. Alongside hand embroidery, you also have a lot of other machines. For example, we have the Bernina's and the Juki, which are industrial sewing machines. So this is one of the digital embroider machines. We use the software on the computer to put in whatever design you like, which then gets digitalised. And then as you can see, it stitches the design onto your chosen fabric.  


[00:07:12] So I hope this has been helpful. We hope to see you on one of our Open Days. You get to experience it for yourself - what it's like in uni life. Hope the information on this link below will be helpful - hope to see you soon! 


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