It’s the Friday before Memorial Day weekend-do you know where your textile books are?
For some, the next three days will feature many of you grilling, beer guzzling and eating corn on the cob while waving American flags wildly, but for others, it’s 3 days off in a row for hibernating under a blanket.
This memorial Day weekend, we thought we’d cater to the latter and offer up our 10 favorite textile books, guaranteed to engage you in everything from early U.S. colonists to biomimicry.
Check out what we found:
1. Sustainable Fashion and Textiles: Design Journeys
“Sustainable Fashion and Textiles: Design Journeys brings together for the first time information about lifecycle sustainability impacts of fashion and textiles, practical alternatives, design concepts and social innovation. It challenges existing ideas about the scope and potential of sustainability issues in fashion and textiles, and sets out a more pluralistic, engaging and forward-looking picture, drawing on ideas of systems thinking, human needs, local products, slow fashion and participatory design, as well as knowledge of materials.
The book not only defines the field, it also challenges it, and uses design ideas to help shape more sustainable products and promote social change. Arranged in two sections, the first four chapters represent key stages of the lifecycle: material cultivation/extraction, production, use and disposal. The remaining four chapters explore design approaches for altering the scale and nature of consumption, including service design, localism, speed and user involvement. While each of these chapters is complete in and of itself, their real value comes from what they represent together: innovative ways of thinking about textiles and garments based on sustainability values and an interconnected approach to design.” – Amazon
2. Fashion Scandinavia: Contemporary Cool
“Scandinavian furniture and architecture have long held sway in the global design sphere, and Scandinavian fashion is now gaining the same influence. The appeal lies in the simplicity, minimalism, attention to detail, and high quality of materials so iconic to Scandinavian design, as well as a commitment to sustainable and ethical production methods.
Heralding a new movement in fashion, this book features over fifty notable designers from Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Iceland, and Finland. These include well-established designers at brands such as Acne, DAY Birger et Mikkelsen, and Marimekko, as well as up-and-coming labels such as Ann-Sofie Back, Peter Jensen, and Soulland. From the sharp tailoring of COS and the gothic creations of Camilla Stark to the understated collections by the Icelandic sisters behind the Kalda label, all demonstrate a dedication to wearable fashion and a cool and refined style. Interviews with the designers cover training, sources of inspiration, and manufacturing methods.” – Amazon
3. ReFashioned: Cutting-Edge Clothing from Upcycled Materials
“The area of recycling and upcycling is a rich and growing source of innovative design in the fashion and accessories industries.
In a fast-fashion world of throw-away clothing, it is the ultimate expression of the slow-fashion movement, with each piece individually conceived and crafted from scratch, using different materials each time.
ReFashioned features 46 international designers who work with recycled materials and discarded garments, reinvigorating them with new life and value. The result is beautiful and desirable clothing and accessories that also make an important statement to the fashion world about its wasteful and exploitative practices.” – Amazon
4. Digital Visions for Fashion and Textiles: Made in Code
“The invention of the Jacquard loom in eighteenth-century France paved the way for computing and revolutionary change. From its punch-card origins, code has evolved to define and enable new methods in design, making, visualization, production and communication, achieving the previously unimaginable.
Digital Visions for Fashion + Textiles: Made in Code considers how computing has reinvented image, material and structural processes, highlighting newly advancing 2D, 3D and interactive output. Pioneering shifts of practice have developed from hybrid technical and creative collaborations. Digital and analogue fusions are defining new contexts for the innovative fabrication of surfaces, products and environments.
Twenty-two of the most forward-thinking practitioners, established and emerging, who have embraced developing digital technologies are profiled. Featured are household names, such as Hussein Chalayan, Prada and Issey Miyake, early pioneers (Vibeke Riisberg, Peter Struycken) and more independent, avant-garde individuals (Iris van Herpen, Casey Reas, Tom Gallant). Complete with a reference section and bibliographic information, this unique and richly illustrated book is the perfect resource and inspiration for designers, students, industry professionals, and anyone looking for an exploration of how computer technology has creatively permeated fashion, textiles and related digital sectors.” – Amazon
5. Textiles in America
“First published in 1984, Textiles in America 1650-1870, remains the definitive study of textiles as they were used in early American homes. The book offers an overview of textiles in America, based on years of research. Imported textiles played a central role in the lives of American colonists and were the most-imported commodity. This book illustrates samples from collections around the world, as well as drawings and engravings of the time. Its dictionary-style entries depict the myriad household uses for textiles in the period. Drawing on original documents, prints, paintings, commercial records, merchant papers, advertisements, and pattern books.” -Amazon
6. Textile Visionaries
“Technologized textiles and sustainable fabrics are among the most innovative designed today, and together they are driving the rest of the industry dramatically forward. Many designers are now integrating hi-tech fabrics, such as protective and impact-resistant textiles, or cellulose fabrics, with groundbreaking results. Embracing new processes such as biomimicry, they bridge the gap between art, design, technology, and sustainability more than any other material.
Textile Visionaries shows how the development of fabrics today is immersed in technology, sustainability, and innovation. It is an essential resource for anyone interested in contemporary textile design.” -Amazon
7. Textile Futures
“Textiles connect a variety of practices and traditions, ranging from the refined couture garments of Parisian fashion to the high-tech filaments strong enough to hoist a satellite into space. High-performance fabrics are being reconceived as immersive webs, structural networks and information exchanges, and their ability to interface with technology is changing how the human body is experienced and how the urban environment is built. Today, textiles reveal their capacity to transform our world more than any other material.
Textile Futures highlights recent works from key practitioners and examines the changing role of textiles. Recent developments present new technical possibilities that are beginning to redefine textiles as a uniquely multidisciplinary field of innovation and research. This book is an important tool for any textile practitioner, fashion designer, architect, interior designer or student designer interested in following new developments in the field of textiles, seeking new sustainable sources, or just eager to discover new works that reveal the potency of textiles as an ultramaterial.” –Amazon
8. African Textiles Today
“African Textiles Today illustrates how African history is read, told, and recorded in cloth.
All artifacts or works of art hold within them stories that range far beyond the time of their creation or the lifetime of their creator, and African textiles are patterned with these hidden histories. In Africa, cloth may be used to memorialize or commemorate something – an event, a person, a political cause – which in other parts of the world might be written down in detail or recorded by a plaque or monument. History in Africa can be read, told, and recorded in cloth.” -Amazon
9. The Fleece and Fiber Source Book
“This one-of-a-kind photographic encyclopedia features more than 200 animals and the fibers they produce. It covers almost every sheep breed in the world — from the longwool breeds of the United Kingdom to the Tasmanian merino, the Navajo churro, the northern European Faroese, and dozens and dozens more. It also includes goats, camelids (such as alpacas, llamas, and vicunas), bison, horses, musk oxen, rabbits, and even dogs. Each entry includes photographs of the featured animal; samples of its raw fleece, its cleaned fleece, and yarn spun from the fleece; and samples of the yarn knit and woven. You’ll find everything you want to know about each animal and its fiber, including the fiber’s color, density, strength, and staple length, and recommendations for processing and using it. This is the essential reference no fiber-lover can be without.” -Amazon
10. The Textile Artists Studio Handbook
“The Textile Artist’s Studio Handbook is the only book you need for expanding your repertoire of textile crafting and design techniques. This is the go-to guide for the foundations of design and fabrication, glossary of materials, and classic techniques that include weaving, dyeing, painting, and more! Plus, where else can you get behind-the-scenes access to setting up the best home textile studio for you?
Inside, you’ll find exploration of basic materials (including fibers, dyes, paints, and other media); visual tutorials for spinning, felting, crochet, weaving, sewing, and quilting; primers for surface decoration techniques such as dyeing, painting, stitching, and screen printing; and patterns and project instructions.” -Amazon