Materials Innovation supported by The Clothworkers' Foundation - Shortlisted 2016
Nottingham-based Laura Morgan is a textile designer and researcher with particular experience in the fashion & textile industry where she gained commercial design experience as senior designer and design manager for boutique brand companies and a high street supplier as well as running her own designer/maker label and events company.
Originally a graduate in Textile Design, Laura’s practice combines material and sustainable innovation facilitated by digital technologies and craft approaches. Her most recent collaborative research at Loughborough University has been exploring laser techniques for textile surface design. As she says, ‘by offering alternative solutions to traditional textile wet processing - through dry laser technology - there is potential to increase environmental sustainability’. The key techniques, which include the laser-enhanced dyeing of wool and wool-blend textiles and laser moulding of synthetics, offer bespoke or short run production options, while reducing energy use, water and chemical effluent. Furthermore the laser-treated wool can then be dyed at a lower temperature in less time, thus saving water and energy. The dyeing quality is also improved, with initial tests suggesting a potential 54% reduction in energy used during dye production. This research has allowed Laura to investigate alternative options available for sustainable design choices within the supply chain, an issue that she hopes to address through the application of these new technologies. If Laura were to be given the award she would focus on developing further the opportunities both in terms of application and aesthetics of her new laser design process.