Textile designing is a creative field that bridges fashion design, carpet manufacturing and any other cloth-related field. It encompasses not only drawing skill but business savvy and customer relations as well.
Textile designing involves producing patterns for cloth used in clothing, household textiles (such as towels) and decorative textiles such as carpets. The field encompasses the actual pattern making as well as supervising part or all of the production process.
Designers might use software, hand paint, or grab a pencil and paper to record their designs. Both historical and everyday patterns serve as influences for textile designers. Once a pattern is agreed upon, the design process shifts to choosing the proper fabrics and then to getting the design printed on or woven into the fabric. The designer consults with those coloring and creating the fabric until the final product meets everyone's standards.
Working in textile design requires training, usually through a degree program in either textile design or fine art. It's not unusual to end up specializing in one type of fabric. It is possible to enter textile designing from a related field. GraphicDesignBasics.com says a fashion designer might concentrate on textile design in order to "enhance their design ideas."
Textile Design Versus Pattern Design
Textile designing involves not only clothing and carpet designs but upholstery, too. GraphicDesignBasics.com notes that this specific type of textile design is known as pattern design, although despite the similar names, pattern design is not the same as pattern making. Pattern design may involve working with metal in addition to fabric.
Textile designers may branch out into other fields in which textile designing skill is useful, such as interior design. They may also move into designing paper goods, ceramics or other items that require patterns, according to Sessions College for Professional Design. This is sometimes a necessary move due to the competitive nature of the field if there aren't enough designer jobs, though in other cases it may simply be a natural evolution of the designer's interest.
- GraphicDesignBasics.com: What Is Textile Design
- DegreeDirectory.org: Textile Designer: Career Profile, Job Outlook, and Education Requirements
- University of Missouri, St. Louis: Occupational Outlook Handbook--Designers
- Sessions College for Professional Design: Textile Designer Job Description
- Philadelphia University: Textile Design Careers
- Photo Credit textile colourful image by inacio pires from Fotolia.com
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