What a tremendous opportunity Oxford Brookes University Foundation Art and Design has created for their textile students! This unique live industry project collaborates with both respected print and pattern maker Chrisanna and business entrepreneur Elizabeth from Molaloche Concepts Ltd in Lagos.
Just as traditional Ankara designs depict aspects of life inspired by Africa, this project shows life in Oxford through repeat pattern taken from everyday visual clues. This is such a great amalgamation of cultural similes that we have been so proud to have played our part in printing onto our own 100% Cotton Gabardine fabric.
Traditionally, Ankara is African inspired handprinted 100% cotton fabric made using the batik wax resist method to create vibrant designs. Here we have been delighted to see students using alternative modern digital textile printing methods. The results have been outstanding!
Amy Harris from Oxford Brookes explains the project and the opportunities it brings for the students at their Headington Campus:
Through this project we aimed to give students a ‘real world’ experience of working as a freelance designer, whilst also working to change the narrative of African countries allowing students in Oxford to work for a successful businesswoman in Nigeria. Elizabeth and I collaborated on the brief for students to design Ankara fabrics for Molaloche Concepts to tell ‘a story about Oxford’ to the people of Lagos.”
Through working for Elizabeth students were given the opportunity to learn about her Lagosian culture and begin to share some of their own experiences with her, whilst also gaining invaluable feedback directly from her as a business owner and entrepreneur. Breaking down barriers between continents and promoting respect for others in different parts of the world was a key goal for the project.
Through working with Chrisanna students also received knowledge and feedback from a professional currently working in the industry. Chrisanna worked with students as she would with her own freelancers, continuously relating their experience on the project with her experience of working with the large high street brands. This gave the students an insight into what would be expected of them as professionals.
Watch the moment the students from Oxford Brookes received their printed fabric designs.
This is often the moment that brings the most pleasure for textile designers. Finally they can see the tangible results of all the hours of creative investigation and design. Thank you to Oxford Brookes Foundation Art and Design for sharing the moment with us.
The processes involved in digital textile printing causes the original fabric to shrink. If you are printing scarves, the size of the finished product will be important to you. For example, if you have square artwork, you will be expecting your finished scarf to be square!
To get the printed fabric closer to the size you need, all fabric intended for scarves must go through an extra step to reshape it. Please allow extra time on your deadlines to allow for this process.
Let us introduce you to the …
The stenter is an enormous piece of machinery that has many uses, including coating our fabrics and reshaping scarf orders.
After travelling through a solution to soften the fabric, it then passes over a flat bed, gripped on the selvedge edges to pull it back into shape.
It’s a long and precise process that needs to be carefully monitored.
If you have selected to use our hemming service, we will check the stentered fabric for you before we begin to finish your scarves. If you are not using our service, it’s up to you to check the size BEFORE you cut out the individual scarves from the fabric length. We cannot re-size after your scarves have been cut out.