In the era where product manufacturing becomes digital, fashion is not being left behind. Betting on new manufacturing processes, Catherine Wales is a London-based digital fashion designer graduated from London College of Fashion who mixes principles of science and fashion using the latest and most advanced techniques of our time. With over 15 years of experience, she has been trained in large and prestigious fashion houses like Saint Laurent and worked alongside designers of high caliber – not to mention some: Jasper Conran, Jean Charles de Castelbajac, Oswald Boateng, Gap and Emanuel Ungaro.
This pattern cutter expert offers a revolutionary vision for sustainability in the industry that has debuted with a triumphant three-dimensional collection of 8 pieces perfectly fitting the human body, known as the DNA Project. How it works? Definitely it is an original proposal: taking as inspiration the visual identity and structure of the human chromosome, these accessories are printed to scale and which ones stick to any type and form of body, thus feeling like a second skin. Foremost, Wales uses a scanner allowing her to visualize a digital model of the figure from the customer and then she starts to design and build specifically from the measurements of the client, as herself chooses every material, colors, cuts and shapes in less time than expected.
“The idea started with a message for the industry: we don’t need size labels on our garments. I felt the fashion industry needed to integrate more technology to reflect where society is going,” the specialist said to electronic magazine Dezeen.
Wales declares that these scientific advances have allowed her to apply her advanced knowledge as a pattern-maker and states that 3D technology provides the ability to create almost instantly, it also can function as a possible answer to the restrictions of clothing manufacturing and global issues of supply and demand proposing to eliminate the need to categorize the product into traditional size groups and reduce annoying waste.
Several local studies provided her the necessary equipment to carry out her explorations, examples as laser sintering, rapid prototyping (the vital computer program which makes and reads the triangular facet designs and gets them into the 3D printer), small interchangeable pieces of white nylon and individual spherical-shaped components allowing the construction under the desire of the designer in various directions, like Lego.
In her collection we can appreciate interesting and variad products including a corset and futuristic belts, shoulder accessories and a mask of mirrors.
According Wales, her collection can also be used to stimulate visual and conceptual thinking by editorial photography in order to imagine endless possibilities for develop proposals in 3D spacial prototyping. Her work was exhibited last year at the Arnhem Mode Biennale in the Netherlands and at the Design Museum under the name of ‘The Future is Here: A New Industrial Revolution’.