The craft of tailoring

The existence of a gap between art, design and craft has been historically argued. This argument has distanced theory from practice and has demeaned knowledge situated in the experience of tailors. The aim of this research is to explore and describe the elements that can reveal the existence of design thinking, design practice and concept of design in the craftsmanship of tailors in Bogota. The study describes the ideation/ creation process present in this craftsmanship and acknowledges the existence of a complete design process done by tailors. The study used a comparative case study design to explore and describe the elements that reveal an iterative design process. For each case analysis, synthesis, projection and communication were compared to identify patterns. In addition a participatory approach was used to involve participants in the research process. Analysis shows the existence of design elements in the craftsmanship of tailors. These elements are present through out the iterative process of design. They reveal actions and attitudes used by tailors to construct knowledge about the user, the process and the design existent in the craft of tailoring. The creation of a design space where ethical and aesthetical criteria are used to unravel desires and expectation. Finally, the craft of tailoring goes beyond the repetition of sewing patterns or predetermined movements and gestures preformed by the tailor. Its nature enables an understanding of design at the convergence of ethical, aesthetical and technical attitudes.