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Modular design in fahion industry

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p>"Modular design" is a kind of design mode that not only can made clothing more interesting, makes the wearer can participate in choices, increase the possibility of clothing style .but also can extend the service cycle of clothing. In this "fast fashion" run market, the design idea of modular design can be a breakthrough point, help us find the way to balance the low-carbon and environmentally-friendly need and fashion. The article will combine the existing examples put the modular design summarized into three categories: component modular design and geometric modular design and compounded modular design.</p
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Journal of Arts and Humanities (JAH)
27
Modular Design in Fashion Industry
Meng-Mi Li
1
, Ying Chen
2
, Ye Wang1
ABSTRACT
"Modular design" is a kind of design mode that not only can made clothing more interesting, makes
the wearer can participate in choices, increase the possibility of clothing style .but also can extend
the service cycle of clothing. In this "fast fashion" run market, the design idea of modular design can
be a breakthrough point, help us find the way to balance the low-carbon and environmentally-
friendly need and fashion. The article will combine the existing examples put the modular design
summarized into three categories: component modular design and geometric modular design and
compounded modular design.
Keywords: Environmental Protection, Fashion Design, Low Carbon, Modular Design.
This is an open access article under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
1
Shanghai University of Engineering Science, School of fashion design, Shanghai, 201620, China.
2
Shanghai University of Engineering Science, School of fashion design, Shanghai, 201620, China. E-mail: chenying39@126.com
With the rapid development of economy and living standers, consumers have enough money
and gradually pay more attention to their appearance, consumers began their chase of fashion in the
city life, and that is the background of how so-called fast fashion emerged. In the 1980 s, the concept of
"fast fashion" was put forwarded in the field of fashion design. Its initial purpose is to let ordinary
people able to enjoy quickly updated fashion by cheap prices. Indeed, the presence of fast fashion is
really narrowed the distance of the popular and fashion, however, the waste of resources caused by
the short service cycle, has aroused wide concern in the society. That is why the keywords such as
green, environmental protection and low carbon can become hot spot of the whole garment industry.
From the production of raw materials to processing, from fabric processing method to dye selection,
from concept to product packaging design, from the post-processing reconstruction of old clothes to
recycle, everybody is trying to advise on apparel industry transformation. Fashion designers are also
more likely to update their ideas about fashion and design, incorporating sustainability and green
concepts into the design.
Nowadays we have many design method, the "modular design" as a kind of green design is no
longer a fresh thing, in the home design, electronics, automobile and other fields have had excellent
performance, and in the field of clothing, the idea of modular design also attracted a lot of stylist, made
Journal of Arts & Humanities
Volume 07, Issue 03, 2018, 27-32
Article Received: 23-09-2017
Accepted: 13-10-2017
Available Online: 14-03-2018
ISSN: 2167-9045 (Print), 2167-9053 (Online)
DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.18533/journal.v7i3.1271
Li et al., JAH (2018), Vol. 07, No. 03: 27-32
Journal of Arts and Humanities (JAH)
28
a number of cases. Modular design itself, however, thanks to the great diversity it have, the modular
design is often integrated into the "multi-functional design" concept, of course, by modular design can
achieve the effect of the multi-function design, but actually modular design can realize more possibility,
therefore, this article specially combined cases with modular design, then do some classified and
discussion, Hope it can bring more open field of vision for designers who focus on environmental
protection.
1. The concept: Environmental value and application status of modular design
1.1 Concept of modular design
So-called "Modular design", simply is the product of the certain elements together, form a
specific function subsystem, the subsystem as a universal module and other products elements on a
variety of combination, constitute the new system, produce a variety of different or the same functions
and performance of products. The modular design in clothing exactly dismantling the clothes to
different parts, and each part as a module can be disassembled to restructure with others. Modular
design make the clothing no longer regarded as a complete product, but as a whole composed of
multiple modules. These modules can be integrated as the owner like and concluded the endless
possibilities.
1.2 The environmental value of modular design
The value of modular design is embodied in the three main features.
The first feature is diversity. Modular design make clothing pieces, on the one hand, let the
wearer involved in the process of choice and assembly, greatly enhanced the interestingness and
interactivity of design, can maximize the care to the wearer's emotions, to actively participate in the
design of the wearer, the half proposition design way to convert design from one-way output to two-
way interaction. On the other hand, modular design can change the clothing style through different
module assembly, it can meet different needs and extend the service cycle of clothing as much as
possible at a lower cost.
The second feature is flexibility. All ordinary clothing products have to undergo five processes
included design, production, sales, use and discard the use. Compared to the general form of clothing,
modular design of clothing has a high degree of flexibility in each process, the seller can design,
produce and sales module according to market demand, the buyers can also abandon the module they
don't need and only keep the useful parts. Modularity enable to achieve efficient resource allocation
and low energy consumption, that's exactly what the low-carbon environment needs.
The third feature is continuity. This is a unique characteristic of modular design that general
clothing does not have the function of. Modular design can be used only in one garment, can also be
used in a range of products, it can also be used in a series of products. When a set of modular standards
apply in a number of series products of long-term, module bought this season can even and combine
with the module of next season even the next season. That’s the best way to gain the value of
environment protecting.
1.3 The application of modular design
The concept of modular design in the clothing aspects still not mature enough, lack of practice
and application, most of domestic modular design mainly service for the realization of multi-functional,
basically stay on the level of single product modular design which without a deep study of modular
design potential. Abroad modular design obvious explore more deeply, not only in conceptual design
but also in garment design and marketization. in terms of scale, they not only have a single product
modular design, but also have a series of modular design product, there are even have modular design
can across several seasons and create a unique production marketing chain; In the design aspect, they
also carried on each kind of exploration, excavated the modular design possibility. However, compared
with other forms of design, the development of modular design is still not mature enough, and its
market value has not been fully developed yet, but there are still have great development value and
possibilities.
Modular design in fashion industry
Journal of Arts and Humanities (JAH)
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2. The classification of modular design
Modular design is focused on how to disassemble the module, the different disassembled form
and degree will bring different advantages and disadvantages, for example, the degree of dismantling
more meticulous, the unit module smaller, the splicing methods more flexible, free play space is also
bigger, however, this does not mean dismantling is more detailed is better, because the wearer in
addition to have the demand for design, have convenient demand as well, with dismantling is
meticulous, match line is more, operation is also more and more trouble, it will reduce the participation
of the wearer. Thus, in modular design, the choice of disassembling is very important. Therefore, this
article, according to the different disassembly form, can be divided modular design into three
categories: The component modular design of the basic clothing form is retained, the geometric
modular design is separated from the basic garment shape and the compounded modular design is
adopted both. The following will be combined with the existing modular design case for analysis and
collation, this article will go into details about it.
2.1 Component modular design
The so-called component modular design, that is, to retain the basic form and structure of
clothing, clothing will be disassembled into two or more than two modules. Parts of the modular design
is a departure from the original form of the clothing design, that is to say break up the whole into parts,
each part of the module is part of the clothing, have specific functions, to ensure the module in
combination, can restore the original shape of clothing. Here, in accordance with the functional
attributes of modules, the component modules are refined into two categories: single function module
and Multi-function module.
2.1.1 Single function module
As the name suggests, a single functional module means
that a disassembled module only has a fixed function, and a
module has only one form of splicing. The decomposition of a
single functional module only needs to be taken apart from the
complete garment, which is the simplest, and therefore the most
widely used in the market.
Such direct disassembly can be simple or detailed. Simple
as the brand Lemaire establish by two designers named Lemaire
Christophe and Sarah-Linh Tran, they had a shirt that can remove
the collar, as shown in Figure 1, the designer only for clothes and
dismantling the shirt collar two modules, by replacing the collar
module realizes the style changes, but changes in such a simple
way of dismantling is very limited, and not really play the real
value of modular design.
Detailed as the Threadlab studio launched modular DIY
shirt, as shown in Figure 2, the designer divided the shirt into four
modules: clothes, collar, cuff and chest pocket. The body has two
kinds of modules include long and short sleeved, collar, cuff and
chest pocket respectively provides several different styles of
modules, after the buyers are free to choose the components
module required they complete assembly by ironing. This way of dismantling is more detailed, but also
has greater freedom. In addition, according to the unified specification component can realizes the
transboundary use, it means that the module of collar can be used not only in this body module, can
also be used in another body module, greatly enhancing the generality of each module.
Generality in the modular design of the Bernice Pan’s brand DePloy (as shown below in Figure
3) is more outstanding, the shirt of Lemaire only in single style which uses modular design approach,
Threadlab uses modular design methods in the category of men's shirts, and the brand DePloy
obviously go further, it continued to use a modular design approach in multiple seasons products, that
is to say the DePloy series module can be used not only in this season, and can also be assembled with
Fig. 1: A shirt of Lemaire studio.
Fig. 2: Threadlab studio’s modular DIY shirt.
Li et al., JAH (2018), Vol. 07, No. 03: 27-32
Journal of Arts and Humanities (JAH)
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the module of next season or another season. Therefore, the
service life of modules is extended as much as possible, and the
value of modular design is also more showed.
Overall, the single function module design no matter
simple or detailed own the same thinking from which direction all
from "whole" to "parts", single function module design is simple
and direct, is the type most easy to achieve market-oriented.
2.1.2 Multi-function module
Multi-function module means that the module has two or
more than two functions, each module of the garment if you
want to achieve multi-function, in addition to simple disassembly
like component modular design, but also through the conversion
method to achieve.
The conversion method has two basic methods: the
openings conversion method and the role conversion method.
The opening conversion method signified that achieve the effect
of Assimilation of conventional garment openings when design,
such as the size of the collar opening and cuffs opening can be
assimilated, and then cuff decoration module can be transformed
into the collar decoration module, what’s more, the conversion of
cuffs opening and leg opening, or the conversion of collar
opening and hem opening can also be a good example.
Role conversion method is to change the clothing from
the original role to other roles, such as positive and negative
swaps, pants change skirts, sleeves change trouser legs and so
on. Liu Guirong in the article "Design and development of plate
type of leisure wear in Multi-function youth clothing" showed a design has a very strong representative
(as shown in Figure 4), the armhole depth of the style was enlarged and assimilated to the thigh leg
opening. And the module has two functions, be the sleeves or be the trouser legs. At last, realize the
conversion from the role of jacket to the role of pants.
Compare to single function modular design, multi-function modular design have more space of
design, nevertheless, it is a challenging task for designers because multi-function module design also
more difficult.
2.2 Geometric modular design
Geometric modular design is different from
the component modular design. The way
geometric modular design dismantling the clothing
out of the basic form of clothing usually have, it
dismantled into geometric shapes such as triangle,
quadrangle or polygon and so on, the geometric
size of the module can be small or large, clothing
can be formed from one kind of geometric
modules can also be made of various geometric
modules, the splicing way can be flat, and also can be three-dimensional. Geometric modular design
have more flexibility than the component modular design, a large number of replication modules is
used, once between the module and the other module have a unified size, the modules can replace
each other like Lego blocks, as long as the user is willing to, even the geometric module can be
assembled into hats, belts, bags and other accessories.
In 2009 the zipper dress can be represented (as shown in Figure 5), designer Sebastian errazuriz
said: "The zipper skirt can become dinner dresses, T-Shirts, belts, bracelets and even mini skirt." The
zipper skirt is provided with 120 separate zippers, each of which can be partially or completely
Fig. 3: DePloy brand clothing.
Fig. 4: Multi-function leisure wear design by
Liu Guirong.
Fig. 5: The zipper dress design by Sebastian errazuriz.
Modular design in fashion industry
Journal of Arts and Humanities (JAH)
31
removed. The skirt changes style through increase
or remove the zippers. He regards long strips of
fabric as geometric modules and hope that
through such geometric modules to achieve
different styles of assembly.
It happens that there is a similar case, The
design of Bolor Amgalan (Figure 6) is a series of
geometric modular design too, compared to the
former case, designer made more attempts in the
dismantling of the module, his created the module
for quadrilateral module and strip as basic elements, mainly through the embedded way making
clothing as building blocks.
It is worth mentioning that the geometric module has a more obvious advantage in resource
protecting, because in the process of use, the same module can obtain new styles only by changing the
assembling method, and in the process of discarded, the loss of geometric module is smaller as well.
2.3 Compounded modular design
However, component modular design and geometric
modular design is also not so quite distinct from each other, the
middle zone between the two kinds of modular design belongs
to the compounded modular design.
Designer Chen Weihong’s graduation work "Modular
Cycle" showed series good fusion about component module and
geometric module, as shown in Figure 7, is a body module is a
component module based on ordinary dress, and the module as a
skirt decoration is geometric module removed from the basic
form of garment, the geometric module itself is not fixed, by
snap fasteners, it can be the skirt, can be a cloak, can also be a
simple decoration. In this series, designers flexibly use different
forms of modules to achieve the component module assembly,
such a compromise choice presents a different look, enriched the possibility of modular design.
3. Modular design splicing
In addition to disassembling modules, how to splicing module is another focus of modular
design. At present, the common splicing techniques and the main features of several types of Table 1,
including buttons, snap fasteners and zippers due to simple operation is the most commonly used, knot
have strong decorative effect, but poor stability. Embedded technique is novel and interesting, but only
for the stiff fabric, usually used for air layer fabric. Although the thermal activation adhesive film is
convenient, but the cost is high, and the modules could not be disassembled again, which is not
conducive to the repeated use.
Table 1: Modular design splicing
Features
Cost low, easy to operate.
Easy to operate, but too much influence on comfort
The adornment effect is strong, the stability is bad
Easy to operate, but but only for the stiff fabric
Good stability and convenient operation, but the cost is higher, and
cannot be disassembled again
In the actual application of splicing technique, there are two kinds of expressions: recessive and
explicit. Recessive is to try to use the same color, reduce the volume of splicing tools to reduce the
sense of presence, the explicit prefers to use the color matching, amplify splicing tools to emphasize
the sense of presence .
Fig. 6: Geometric modular design by Bolor Amgalan
Fig. 7: Chen Weihong’s graduation work
"Modular Cycle".
Li et al., JAH (2018), Vol. 07, No. 03: 27-32
Journal of Arts and Humanities (JAH)
32
4. Conclusion
If the design mode of components modular design is break up the whole into parts, then the
design idea of geometric modular design is from parts to the whole, and the idea of compounded
modular design is wandering between the two.
Combined with the examples in this paper, we can see that modular design is essentially an
inclusive design technique. Module dismantling way is free, and can be disassembled into components,
but also can be disassembled into geometric modules, even both the continuity of the module; the set
of continuity is free, modular design can be used in a single product, but also can do the modular design
in the series, also can do the modular design in different seasons; the size of the module is free, can be
disassembled simple, also can be disassembled detailed. It can be said that the space of the modular
design is very large, the above cases are, I suspect, just the tip of the iceberg. In today's fast fashion
market, how to use modular design to achieve the balance of environmental protection and fashion is
still worth explored.
References
Dan Li, Fan Xia. Application of more functions in one garment design [J]. Journal of Silk, 2014, 1(1):51-54.
Guirong Liu. Design and development of plate type of leisure wear in Multi-function youth clothing [D].
Qingdao: Qingdao University, 2015.
Runa Peng, Xicheng Zhang. Changeable clothes -- new idea of costume design in low carbon context
[J]. Fashion Guide, 2014, 9(3):52-54.
Xiao Hu. Research on fuzzy design method of multifunctional clothes [D]. Zhejiang: Zhejiang Sci-Tech
University, 2013.
Web links
www.3023.com/1/725366691.html
http://mp.weixin.qq.com/s/6vuIc2LFzEgEevNesV5zeA
http://eladies.sina.com.cn/fa/p/2009/0225/1334834518.html
... In order to explore modular shapes and interlocking systems for apparel design, initial modular exploration began with the question: What shapes could be used as a module? Geometric modular design, as classified by Li et al. (2018), includes triangles, quadrangles, and other geometric shapes. Clothing formed from one kind of module can be made from various other geometric modules; the joining of these modules can be flat or three-dimensional. ...
... Clothing formed from one kind of module can be made from various other geometric modules; the joining of these modules can be flat or three-dimensional. The geometric modular design has more flexibility than other modular design classifications (Li et al., 2018). Many textile and apparel designers have used modular geometric shapes, such as those created by Paco Rabanne (Steele, 2009), Kosuke Tsumura (Mini, 2009), and Mia Cullin (n.d.). ...
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İnsan yaşamının büyük bir bölümünü kapsayan tekstil, günümüz moda sisteminin yönlendirdiği en geniş endüstrilerden biridir. Teknolojinin gelişmesi, hızlı moda olgusunun oluşmasında büyük bir etken olmakla beraber aynı zamanda sürdürülebilir inovatif lif ve boyarmadde gibi materyallerin gelişmesine de olanak tanımıştır. Günümüzde artan tüketimin küresel ölçekteki etkileri göz önünde bulundurulduğunda, hızlı moda sisteminin tüketim toplumuna dönüşmemizde büyük bir etken olduğunu görmekteyiz. Bu bağlamda, hızlı moda ve yavaş moda kavramları karşılaştırılarak, sürdürülebilirlik olgusu ve moda kavramı irdelenmiş; giyim modasının tüketimdeki etkileri ele alınmıştır. Çalışmada, teknolojinin katkıları ile tekstilde geliştirilen inovatif sürdürülebilir materyaller incelenirken; sürdürülebilir modaya katkı sağlayacak tasarım yaklaşımları, akademik makale, tez ve kitap yayınlarından araştırılmıştır. Sürdürülebilir moda ve bir tasarım yaklaşımı olarak modüler giyim tasarımı ilişkisi çalışılmıştır. Tüketicilerin giyim ürünü alırken çevre ve insan sağlığı hakkındaki bilinçleri ve modüler giyim tasarımına yönelik bakış açılarını değerlendirmek amacı ile "Giyim Modasında Tüketim ve Sürdürülebilirlik" başlığı altında interaktif bir anket çalışılması yapılmış; çalışmada elde edilen istatiksel veriler, ilgili tez çalışmasında sunulmuştur. İlgili çalışmada, sürdürülebilir inovatif yaklaşımlar ve modüler giyim tasarımı, sürdürülebilir bir tasarım stratejisi olarak ele alınmıştır. Bu bağlamda yapılan akademik makale ve tez çalışmaları, giyim endüstrisi içerisindeki modüler giyim tasarımı örnekleri incelenerek; modüler giyim tasarımına yönelik bir kapsül koleksiyon önerisi sunulmuştur. Tez çalışması; moda ve tekstil endüstrisi içerisindeki tasarımcı ve üreticiler ile beraber, tüketiciler üzerinde de sürdürülebilirlik, sağlık ve çevre bilinci konularına dikkat çekmek ve katkı sunmak amaçlıdır. • Textile and clothing industries are one of the broadest industries which cover most parts of human life, driven by today's fashion system. In spite of the fact that the development of technology is a major factor in the formation of fast fashion, it has also contributed to the development of sustainable innovative fibers and dye materials. Considering the effects of today's increased consumption on a global scale, the fast fashion system has a great impact on our consumerist society. In this context, as the clothing industry and fashion concepts are interrelated, the concepts of fast fashion and slow fashion systems were compared, and also dealt with while considering the effects of consumption. In this study, innovative sustainable textile materials which contributed by technology were examined; and also based around the idea of sustainability, the studies on design approaches that will contribute to sustainable fashion were investigated from various articles, thesis and academic publications. As a design approach, modular clothing was studied. In addition, an interactive survey study under the heading "Fashion consumption and Sustainability" was prepared in order to evaluate the consumers' awareness of the environment and human health while they are purchasing clothing and their perspectives towards modular design. Survey results were supported by statistical data obtained on the internet, and presented in this study. In the related study, sustainable innovative approaches and modular clothing design were considered and studied as a sustainable design strategy. In this context, a modular capsule collection proposal was presented by examining academic studies such as articles, thesis, and also modular clothing design examples in the fashion industry. The study aims to raise awareness and draw attention to sustainability, health, and environmental issues among consumers as well as designers, and manufacturers in the fashion industry.
Application of more functions in one garment design
  • Dan Li
  • Fan Xia
Dan Li, Fan Xia. Application of more functions in one garment design [J]. Journal of Silk, 2014, 1(1):51-54.
Design and development of plate type of leisure wear in Multi-function youth clothing
  • Guirong Liu
Guirong Liu. Design and development of plate type of leisure wear in Multi-function youth clothing [D]. Qingdao: Qingdao University, 2015.
Changeable clothes --new idea of costume design in low carbon
  • Runa Peng
  • Xicheng Zhang
Runa Peng, Xicheng Zhang. Changeable clothes --new idea of costume design in low carbon context [J]. Fashion Guide, 2014, 9(3):52-54.
Research on fuzzy design method of multifunctional
  • Xiao Hu
Xiao Hu. Research on fuzzy design method of multifunctional clothes [D]. Zhejiang: Zhejiang Sci-Tech University, 2013. Web links www.3023.com/1/725366691.html http://mp.weixin.qq.com/s/6vuIc2LFzEgEevNesV5zeA