On first look, this white bra appears to be pretty normal, right? In fact, it’s one of the smartest and most advanced bras in existence.
Don’t believe us? Well, this week Lexus selected the product, called the ‘Algorithmic Lace bra’, as the winner of its 2019 Lexus Design Award during fashion week in Milan, Italy (no small feat, FYI).
Dreamt up by a woman called Lisa Marks, it’s a bespoke bra made specifically for women who have undergone a mastectomy. One in eight women will face invasive breast cancer, and a growing number of women will forgo reconstructive surgery and implants, so it was about time our underwear caught up.
And here’s the genius bit: it’s been crafted using a new technique involving algorithmic patterning to make three-dimensional lace.
Marks’ bra product not only delves into this history, but also incorporates a 16th century technique for weaving complex lace patterns, in addition to advanced three-dimensional modelling.
According to CoolHunting.com, the bra is hand-crafted based on body-scans and consultations. The final product avoids sensitive areas post-surgery and highlights a woman’s shape, rather than hiding it. Furthermore, the bra functions as an alternative to reconstruction and implants.
The result? A bra that ‘positively impacts the survivor’s body aesthetic, while also providing fully customised structural support,’ says Maeda.
‘This is traditionally how (lace making is) done,’ Marks, an American industrial designer, told CoolHunting.com. ‘It’s this very traditional bobbin lace. It’s a series of cross and twist and pinned, and cross and twist and pinned.
‘I started playing around with that and analyzing a single stitch algorithmically, then, building new patterns with it and creating these different types of patterns. You can get some three-dimensional optical illusions going and there’s a modern, interesting appeal.
‘I started becoming curious about whether I could make it three-dimensional and it’s really pretty simple. It’s a very traditional thing: the same type of stitch, the same types of tools, but you’re building it over a form instead of a flat pillow.’
As Lexus explains, the prototypes produced by all of this year’s finalists make creative use of technology in practical design concepts that have the power to change lives.
Now in its sixth year, the Lexus Design Award recognises the world’s top designers with products that will ‘shape a brighter future.’
This year’s theme was ‘Design for a Better Tomorrow’ and over 1,500 people entered from 68 countries. Design industry experts eventually whittled those down to six finalists, of which Marks’ incredible product won. The finalist’s ideas will be on display at an exhibit in Milan, where the award was presented.
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