Comparison of Color and Fabric Presentation Options in the Design Process
The purpose of this research was to assess the current (manual) and future (automated) presentation options for fabric and color in the design process. Current and future presentation options were assessed for viability and identification of relationships between reported sufficiency levels and recommended use responses. This exploration was used to identify new and future technologies for presentation of fabric and color that could potentially aid in increasing product manufacturing competitiveness through time and cost reduction. The study also recorded if the current practices for apparel design were congruent with current available technology and estimated future technology capabilities.
A judgment sample of 20 apparel and interior industry personnel, in three geographical locations (i.e., West Coast, Southeast, Northeast), were mailed a self-administered survey. The survey design employed a structured multi-part questionnaire and four fabric and color presentation options (i.e., fabric swatch, printed swatch card, 2D simulation, 3D simulation). The survey was pilot tested for content validity and instrument reliability. Descriptive statistics (i.e., frequencies, percentages, contingency tables) were used to analyze the data. The response rate was 65% for 13 usable responses.
Exploration and analysis of current (manual) and future (automated) presentation options provided information about the sufficiency of the information provided and for consistencies and inconsistencies in the designer's perception of these options. The fabric swatch format was identified as the current viable manual presentation option. The 2D simulation and 3D simulation presentation option was identified for the automated category. Only the 3D simulation option was found to be viable for use in the design process. The fabric swatch and 3D simulation successfully conveyed all fabric characteristics effectively. The fabric swatch also conveyed all format attributes effectively and the 3D simulation effectively conveyed familiar, satisfactory results, saves time, and increased productivity.