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The Textile Institute has members in all sectors of fibre-based industries worldwide. Special Interest Groups provide a focus for members in different sectors, and many of them organise conferences, study tours and other events in their subject area.


A Special Interest Group Committee was inaugurated to represent and support members involved with the worldwide clothing and apparel industries.


  • To raise the profile of fashion and technology within The Textile Institute (TI);
  • To recruit new members from this sector, and encourage re-instatement of previous members;
  • To disseminate information and provide a forum for debate.

Committee Officers

  • Chair: Jennifer Bougourd
  • Vice Chair: David Tyler
  • Secretary: Bill Bohm

All TI members with an interest in this SIG are welcome to join


Report back on Activities, July 2012

F&T SIG group meets several times a year at various member locations in the UK.

Here is a summary of the main issues addressed by the SIG:

The SIG has extended its remit to include leather research, practices and applications, and welcomes a new SIG member, Rachel Garwood, to represent this area. There have been two outcomes of this extension to the SIG: an international seminar 2012 Oct 24: From Hide to High Street - Leather Innovation, Northampton UK and a proposal for a joint research project involving two members of our SIG group from Northampton University and Manchester Metropolitan University.

Rachel Garwood is Director of the Institute for Creative Leather Technologies at the University of Northampton. She has extensive experience in education and the leather industry. She delivers a wide range of professional LEA/University programs and in her prior roles as senior lecturer and key account manager at the BLC Leather Technology Centre Ltd, Northampton was responsible for technical support and training industrialists .

SIG Members involved in fashion, technology, leather and related SIG topics continue to give presentations, contribute to a range of refereed journals and conferences and seminars. Recent interests include:

  • Asia Pacific Leather Fair (APLF), Hong Kong 2012
  • Delivered one week Creative Leather Applications course Northampton UK 2012
  • Ethiopia Education Exhibition and Conference, Addis Ababa 2012
  • UK Colleges Forum: Student Portfolio Day London UK 2012
  • Sri Lanka Apparel Delegation: London UK 2012
  • Textile Forum: Trade Exhibition London UK 2012
  • Wearable Futures: Inclusive Design Conference London UK 2012
  • Leather workshops with several schools & universities within the UK

We remain committed to the provision of Post Professional Development (PPD) programs of study for national and international institutions. The group has been proactive in:

  • Supporting TI accreditation of PPD
  • Liaising with universities seeking PPD validation (e.g. Manchester Metropolitan University and University of the Arts London)
  • Setting up opportunities to visit overseas members that express interest in organising professional training (e.g. Egypt).

In addition, we have met with representatives of professional organisations, institutes and employer associations (e.g. the Association of Suppliers to the British Clothing Industry and the UK group the Textile Network) to discuss industrial training needs and to create a priority list of topics. Further discussion will take place to organise these topics into the formal TI PPD framework.

We have recently welcomed a new UK Corporate (University of Northampton) and an Individual Member and we will continue to promote membership and to encourage anyone working in our disciplines, (as students, lecturers in universities, teachers in schools, managers and technologists in retail and manufacturing, and especially as researchers in such organisations) to join our professional body.

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