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Modular fashion 2

Modular fashion

Learning paths

Path Target Duration Skills
Discovery 18-25 2 1/2 days Digital Design, lasercut

Introduction and context

In this tutorial we are exploring how to make lasercut modules in order to create objects or garment from leftovers fabric, with the Inkscape software and a laser cutting machine.



This workshop aims to raise awareness about the fabric leftover uses and upcycling into a new object.

  • Learning Outcomes:

  • Understand the importance of recycling materials

  • Have an overview of the use of laser cutting machines
  • Discover OpenSource creation software like Inkscape
  • With time : - Be able to design a personalized piece by yourself - Make an object, an accessory or a garment with the modules created

Target audience and contexts of use

Students with an interest in textiles, art school teachers.

To teach this use, one computer per person is required as well as a laser cutter.

Recommended number of participants: 13

Preparation and materials

Materials to prepare in advance: -Download Inkscape (free) -Scissors, pencils, papers, rulers... -Leftovers fabrics

Équipements, outils et matériels

  • Laser cutting machine
  • Computers
  • Sufficiently spacious tables and chairs
  • A screen or projector for the demonstration
  • Scissors
  • Pencils
  • Cutting mat
  • Piece of felt fabrics
  • Other fabrics for testing

Step by Step Instructions

STEP BY STEP overview

  • We are here explaining theory for the assembling of basic modules. To create the modules that can be assembled follow these good practices :
  • The width of the ends (L) must be equal to the slot (L).
  • Depending on the thickness of the fabric, the width (e) of the slit must be adapted.
  • To avoid creating fabric waste, creates 2 complementary shapes to use all of the fabric piece.
  • In order to ensure a beautiful finish, additional modules can be created for the end modules.
  • Depending on the final function, it may be interesting to add holes in order to add handles.
  • In order to make modules that do not use (or use little) new raw material, we use fabric scraps, samples or damaged clothing. This is a good opportunity to transform small scraps of fabric into a new object or garment. The shapes drawn in the Inkscape software can be passed to the SVGnest software, which allows you to reorganize the drawings in order to be as compact as possible (and therefore to use the least amount of fabric).
  • To make modules, the choice of fabric is important, depending on the properties of the fabric the possibilities will be different.
  • With thick and rigid fabrics such as leather or felt, it will be easy to create accessories (bags, baskets etc…), with lighter fabrics, it will be possible to create clothes.
  • For fabrics containing polyester, the laser beam cauterizes the cut edges of the polyester and thus prevents the fabric from fraying. While fabrics such as cotton, linen or jeans will risk fraying.
  • Attention ! Not all fabrics can be cut with a laser cutter. Fabrics that contain chlorine and fluorine give off gases that can be toxic, so they should not be cut with laser. In order to determine if a fabric contain Chlore it's necessary to do the Beilstein test
  • We are using to cut the modules, the laser cutter Beamfluxpro, with the software Beamstudio.
  • In order ti know the fabric cutting parameters, it's necessary to make some tests on the fabric to know at which power and speed this one will be cut or engrave.
  • To make this test we apply different speed and power and see which parameter make the best cut.
  • We do the same with the engraving with a greyscale image.
  • web2

Photos of the event

Student report

Licence and credits

Attribution — ShareAlike CC BY-SA This activity has been designed by Diane Wakim from LeTextileLab Lyon for It is based on the OS Circular fashion week of Fabricademy, Zoe Romano, Claudia Simonelli and alumnis local practice.

Last update: January 3, 2023