Did anyone hear about the Oscars Designer Challenge? Fashion designers competed to have their design worn by the “trophy girl” (the woman who hands the award to the presenter) at the 2010 Oscars Award Show. It was a nice idea and I’m sure the winner, Rania Salibi, was very excited to know her work was going to be seen by millions. I’m really not sure how much it was advertised as I hadn’t heard too much about it, however I did stumble across an article written by the Asian Journal that made reference to the contest. (One of the finalists is Filipino) Anyway, I’m sure by know you’re wondering why I am telling you all of this. Well, upon reading about this finalist, Oliver Tolentino, I was thrilled to find out that the garment he created was a “green”, eco-friendly gown made out of piña fiber, otherwise known as pineapple fiber! According to the article, Oliver wanted to “promote [his] home country’s native fabrics …and see the reaction of Westerners when [he] tells them that piña is pineapple fiber.” Well this Westerner is excited, inspired, and curious. So of course I immediately Googled it and learned that the piña fiber is hand scraped and the filaments are then knotted by hand and woven into a lightweight fabric similar to linen however it is softer and more lustrous. I have that same feeling of enthusiasm now that I did many years ago when I first discovered Tencel, which is made from wood pulp and takes on the qualities of cotton and silk. I’m thinking this could be a fun and unique new material to start working with. Now a bit more research on the process and suppliers…
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