Pittville School (Cheltenham)

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Laser Cut & Engraved Textiles

Laser cut and engraved textiles is a major high street trend and it is therefore important that the use of this technique is reflected in our textiles classrooms. 

Many textiles teachers are understandably nervous about using this type of machine as it is out of their comfort zone, and others are held back because the laser cutter is seen as more relevant to other material areas with textiles teachers and students not being allowed access.

Hetty East (formerly Hubbard), from Pittville School in Cheltenham, taught herself to use the laser cutter at her previous school, Cheltenham College, and her GCSE and A level students produced some very successful projects using this technique. Hetty has recently changed schools to set up a new textiles department and is aiming to introduce techniques such as laser cutting. 

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                      Jacket (A2 coursework) Laser cut faux leather (without chlorine)

Hetty used lots of trial and error working out settings for various fabrics to find out what worked best. Illustrator was mainly used to create the shapes to be laser cut.

laser cut fabric

With the introduction of the new GCSE D&T qualification textiles is moving away from just being about using traditional equipment, such as sewing machines, and the work by Hetty’s students is inspirational and shows the exciting potential for using new ideas, techniques and equipment alongside more traditional ones. 

    Dress (AS coursework) & trousers with laser cut panel & engraved waistband (A2)

Laser cut jacket (A2 coursework) & skirt with laser cut roses and a laser cut hem of the georgette fabric to stop it from fraying (AS coursework)

laser cut fabric 3

Dress (GCSE coursework) & top with laser cut butterflies and strips of georgette fabric that have been laser cut to stop it from fraying (AS coursework)

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                                        GCSE coursework with laser engraved decoration

This work was featured at The Textiles Teacher Roadshow 2016

Photographs of this work were featured as part of the display on laser cutting at The Textiles Teacher Roadshow at Lady Margaret School in February 2016. The photos were included in a demonstration and display on how a laser cutter can be used in textiles. Click here to see more about The Textiles Teacher Roadshow where this work appeared

laser cutter copy


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