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Sally Cooke

Visual Arts, Nottingham Trent University

Thesis title:

Home clothes construction in the context of sustainable fashion: design strategies for promoting the development and application of basic sewing skills

My research focuses on the home construction of clothing in the contemporary context of sustainable fashion. Looking specifically at sewn clothing, my interest is in how people learn basic functional sewing skills, the resources that help them do so and whether/how this impacts on their relationship with clothes more broadly. As part of this research I will be working with people new to sewing to understand their experience of learning and explore alternative ways to support, explicate and disseminate this practice. 

Research Area

  • Visual Arts

Publications

Cooke, S. (2017) 'The Matter at Hand', presented at Making Futures Conference, Plymouth College of Art, 2017.

Cooke, S. (2018) 'Distributed competence as a design response to the sustainable fashion challenge: engaging the amateur maker', presented at Leeds Arts University's Sustainabiliy Symposium, November 2018.

Conferences

Making Futures 2017 - 21st-22nd September, Plymouth College of Art

Public Engagement & Impact

Being Human Festival 2020

Sustainable Clothing Sewposium 18th November 2020 - an open online event for people in Leeds interested in sewing and its role in a more sustainable future. Delivered in partnership with Zero Waste Leeds and Leeds Community Clothes Exchange, the sewposium brought together would-be sewers, experienced sewers and others with an interest in clothing and sustainability to talk about learning, using and sharing sewing skills and making them more accessible to all. Participants were invited to engage in an optional beginners sewing activity introduced at the start of the session or to bring their own sewing project to work on during the discussion. Inspiration was drawn from existing practice and recent research into amateurs learning to sew clothes for themselves. As well as providing a space to meet, share ideas on sustainable sewing practices and sourcing sustainable materials, the event also fed into the Leeds Fashion Futures initiative being developed by Zero Waste Leeds in partnership with the RSA.

Sewcam - how to thread a needle.jpg

Other Research Interests

Craft

Amateur making

Sustainable fashion

Feminism

Consumption/prosumption

Participatory design

New Materialism

Memberships

Stitching Together Network

Design Research Society

Union of Concerned Researchers in Fashion

Fellowship HEA