Date of Degree

2-2018

Document Type

Capstone Project

Degree Name

M.A.

Program

Liberal Studies

Advisor

Eugenia Paulicelli

Subject Categories

Art Education | Art Practice | Digital Humanities | Fashion Design | Fiber, Textile, and Weaving Arts | Interdisciplinary Arts and Media | Liberal Studies

Keywords

fashion, denim, sustainability, quilting, textile consumption, upcycling

Abstract

This project is the beginning of what I intend to be a larger, evolving work that seeks to marry the theoretical with the practical when considering fashion objects that have “served their purpose”. The object at the project’s focal point: a worn out pair of blue jeans. My particular focus on jeans is based on the fact that they, alongside the t-shirt, are one of the most ubiquitous and commonly owned pieces of clothing for people all over the world. This wardrobe staple transcends age, race, and class, as it occupies an iconic status that has made them invulnerable to trends. It is that very same popularity which has caused denim to create a staggering amount of pollution, both when it is produced, and at the time it is discarded.

The project I am proposing will be an educational workshop that provides information on what really happens to our clothes when we get rid of them, in addition to hands-on workshops where participants are tasked with contemplating and then executing possible new uses for a single pair of blue jeans. In short, the old jeans will be reimagined and refashioned into new objects. There will also be some workshop offerings that will be solely devoted to learning a variety of mending techniques. Since space constraints and availability often limit in-person workshops, I have also incorporated my work within the ITP program to create a supplemental online component in hopes of giving the workshop a digital life, thus broadening the boundaries of the classroom.

This chance to learn more about our clothing while crafting as a group within the workshop, is offered in the spirit of creativity and fun, while also intending to add dimension to the critical dialogue around the environmental implications of the fashion industry.

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