Scottish knitting student invents a tartan for the blind

The Daily Record, Scotland

4th September 2018

Scottish knitting student invents a tartan for the blind

Talented Anna Cuinu uses stitch patterns, buttons and belts to simulate the fabric after carrying out months of research at Borders university.

A design student has created a tactile tartan to help people with visual impairments.

Anna Cuinu, investigated how blind, colour blind or partially sighted people experience fabrics.

The Heriot-Watt student held focus groups with the Royal National Institute for the Blind (RNIB) as part of her Masters Knitwear course.

Anna studies at the university’s Textile and Design School in Galashiels, Scottish Borders.

The student analysed current consumer trends to solve the problems of those living with visual impairments often have with clothes.

Anna decided to design a knitted tartan fabric using stitch structures to translate colours and patterns from the traditional tartan fabric into a sensory one.

A colour coding system called Feelipa was also used to communicate the colour of the garments and applied in the form of wooden buttons.

Other features include large drawstring pockets and tie fastenings instead of zips and buttons.

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