Nuno Designing Textiles for the 21st Century
In 1984, Reiko Sudo co-founded Nuno Corporation with Junichi Arai, specializing in the design, production and sale of functional, innovative fabrics. She is Nuno’s director and principal designer. Nuno’s works are in numerous permanent museum collections throughout the world, including a couple of dozen at New York’s MOMA.
Inspired by the look of rubber bands on a magazine in a sunny window, Nuno devised a process using resin dyed to the color of rubber bands and applied to cloth in the right thickness through a silk-screen process.
Silk is woven with pockets. The computer driven looms must be stopped every few minutes to allow the hand placement of feathers in the pockets.
This is a combination of traditionally inspired shibori tie-dye and a modern heat-based pleating process to create an entirely new concept: shibori with pleats.
For this, Nuno used an industrial process for converting re-cycled plastic PET bottles into felt for shoulder pads and linings. Instead of plastic, however, they use comfortable raw wool and alpaca. The process involves applying high pressure water jets and needle-punching to create a stronger bond. Then they add leftovers from their own huge stock of Nuno textile scraps to form what they call Terazzo Felt.
Inspired by the way rust stained white work clothes, and after considerable trial and error, they sandwich iron plates between two layers of rayon, cover it with a blanket (electric blanket in winter) and then let it sit for two days. They then rinse off the fabric and the rust is set into the cloth.
Burnt out begins with a layer of rayon that has been quilted to a layer of polyester. The cloth is randomly coated with a chemical resist. Acid is applied and the parts of the rayon not protected by the resist are burned away.