Sustainably tie-ing it up

Dress created from men’s shirts and the midriff section was created from a pair of men’s pants.

Each year approximately 12 tons of textile waste goes into the landfill. These textiles can be reclaimed and properly recycled, however 93% of the textile waste is not recovered. The purpose of this design was to contribute to the reduction of textile landfill waste by creating a garment out of gently used and discarded men’s shirts and pants.

The designer took inspiration from the stripes and patterns on the shirts in the same way that Gilbert Adrian did in the 1930s and 40s during wartime. These patterns were combined in a way to create an interesting and feminine garment that moves the eye around the curves of the body. The stripes and patterns were matched and strategically placed in order to create movement and excitement in the design.

The draping method was first used used to create a mock up, and then flat pattern techniques were adopted. The pattern pieces were cut on a single layer in order to match the lines and patterns at the seams. The skirt has hip pockets on both the front and back, which was also first draped in muslin. The original men’s shirt collar was utilized around the neck.

The bodice and the skirt of the garment were created from men’s shirts and the midriff section was created from a pair of men’s pants. The strapless corset-style foundation was inserted in-between the fashion fabric and the lining in order to support the wearer. This aspect of the design will support the wearer without the need for any other undergarments. Steel-wire boning was inserted into casing and then stitched to this foundation. A lightweight separating zipper secures the strapless foundation. An invisible zipper at the center back serves as the closure to the dress, and a hook-and-eye is above the invisible zipper.