Reimagining Prints for a Sustainable Future - a one-day workshop led by Lynsey Calder

Lynsey Calder is the Lead for Technical Support in Fashion & Textiles at The Glasgow of Art. Lynsey holds a PhD in 'Optical Pattern and Body Shape'.

About

The Bernat Klein Foundation in partnership with The Glasgow School of Art, was awarded innovation funding to support an exploration of new and sustainable production for Bernat Klein's 1960s/ 70s screen-printed fabrics, known as the Diolen prints.

Bernat Klein diolen fashion prints showcased in the exhibition 'colour, texture, & destination' (Borders Textile Towerhouse, June - December, 2022)

Through both analogue and digital methods, a 'deconstruction' of Klein's fabrics created the basis for the one-day workshops at Borders Textile Towerhouse in Hawick on 5 and 6 March, 2022.

"On each day of the workshop I introduced Bernat Klein’s printed fabrics, and his innovation and inspiration behind the prints" - Lynsey Calder

early preparation from the original Bernat Klein 'diolen' printed fashion textiles

silk-screen printing

I presented visuals from the project alongside original examples, including four large pieces of fabric of different colour-ways and textile patterns donated to the foundation.

original Bernat klein reference materials and colour tests for screen-printing

Similarly, I was also able to show several original Bernat Klein Ltd. promotional brochures, in which participants saw first-hand, Klein's ideas on the presentation of his fabric ranges, and varying fashion styles from the 1960s and '70s.

One example from a collection of promotional brochures for Bernat klein ltd

In presenting my research and development processes, I discussed the practice-based method of deconstructing a Klein printed fabric, in which I used both photography and digital methods to understand Klein's repeating pattern.

an example of a recreated Klein fashion print using digital colour separations for silk-screen printing

During the workshop I focused on one Klein screen-printed design to show how I had identified the repeating pattern - and in a reverse process from Klein's final fabric to a hand-drawn repeating design. The trial printed textile also helped to promote group discussion about archives as material examples of traditional methods of screen-printing.

diolen printed fashion garments from the Borders Textile Towerhouse Klein archive collection

As a group we were able to look at original pieces of Diolen printed garments from the Borders Textile Towerhouse collection. First-hand observation and discussion of the 'deconstruction' process, highlighted the number of individual colours used to produce the Klein silkscreen-prints.

"In describing this to the group, I was also able to demonstrate traditional methods of creating repeating pattern using cutting techniques, known as 'cut-throughs'."

scissors as a direct drawing method using coloured paper

Inspired by Klein’s use of colour, and personal photographs of objects - places - colours and compositions - the group were invited to develop abstract collages using coloured paper and scissors only.

early abstract ideas created in the workshop

The traditional method of 'cut-through' was demonstrated to the group, who then experimented with this in developing their abstract collages into a repeating pattern 'tile' for a printed textile - and as inspiration for further development for new products.

a 'cut-through' to create a repeating pattern

a 'cut-through' to create a repeating pattern

The workshop group march, 2022

In conclusion, the workshop introduced Bernat Klein's printed textiles and his colour inspiration for the Diolen collection. The group explored ideas and approaches in creating textile designs, which can be used as individual inspiration and ideas for further development.

The workshop setting also enabled the group to share their creative practice, as well as discuss collective concerns on topics around sustainability, and intellectual property. Current trends in textile design were also discussed alongside the value of social heritage, and radical changes in the textile industry over recent history.

If you would like to host a one-day workshop led by Lynsey, please contact info@bernatkleinfoundation.org