1st Edition

FABRIC[ated] Fabric Innovation and Material Responsibility in Architecture

Edited By Tolya Stonorov Copyright 2023
    290 Pages 163 Color Illustrations
    by Routledge

    290 Pages 163 Color Illustrations
    by Routledge

    FABRIC[ated] examines fabric as a catalyst for innovation, reflection, change and transformation in architecture.

    This book explores the ways in which research and development of fabric can, and historically has, influenced and revolutionized architecture, teaching and design. Responsive, flexible, impermanent, fluid and adaptive—fabric interacts with, and influences architecture, offering innovative solutions and increased material responsibility. Foundation and theory chapters establish clear precedent and futures for fabric’s position in architectural discourse. The case study section examines 14 international projects through three different threads: Veiling, Compression and Tension. Case studies include a diverse range of projects from the HiLo unit at Nest and CAST’s fabric formed concrete projects to a discussion of the impact of fabric on SO-IL and Kennedy Violich Architect’s professional work, demonstrating new and fresh methods for addressing sustainability and social justice through the use of fabric in architecture. Through the work of the many authors of this book, we see fabric as drape, skin, veil, mold, concept and inspiration. Fabric, in its broadest definition, is an important and innovative material in the development of socially conscious architecture.

    Offering readers pedagogical and practical models for international projects highlighting fabric’s use in architecture, this book will appeal to the novice and the expert, architecture students and practitioners alike.

    1 Introduction

    Tolya Stonorov


    2 The Philosophy of Fabric Innovation in Architecture

    Christopher Bardt

    3 Digital Fabrication and Fabric Innovation

    Jane Scott

    4 The Sustainability of Lightweight Structures

    Timo Carl

    5 The Art and Science of Fabric Forming

    Eleanor D’Aponte



    Academic Inquiry

    6A Seaming: The Fabrication of Keswa

    Emily Baker

    6B Translation: Female Garment to Architecture

    Tolya Stonorov

    6C Pipeline Resistance and Feminist Spatial Practice

    Erin Moore

    6D GEO|TEXTILES: Weaving Restoration Ecology and Cultural Narratives

    Emily Vogler

    6E Weaving a Home

    Abeer Seikaly

    Professional Inquiry

    6F Communal Architecture: A More Finely Calibrated Set of Relationships. A conversation with Florian Idenburg

    7 Compression: Fabric Formed Concrete and Dense Applications

    Academic Inquiry

    7A Spacer Fabric Pavilion—Advanced 3D Textile Applications in Architecture

    Johanna Beuscher and Claudia Lüling

    7B Lightweight Cable-net and Fabric Formwork System for the HiLo Unit at NEST

    Tom Van Mele, Juney Lee and Philippe Block

    7C The Flexible Way

    Mark West

    Professional Inquiry

    7D Form-Finding the MARS Pavilion

    Joseph Sarafian and Ron Culver 

    8 Tension: Tensile Structures and Inflatables

    Academic Inquiry

    8A Fabric[ating] Act[ivat]ion

    Antje Steinmuller

    8B Hollygrove Shade-Water Pavilion

    Judith Kinnard, Irene Keil and Nick Jenisch

    Professional Inquiry

    8C AirDraft

    Thomas Randall-Page

    8D PATCHWORKS: A Report from Three Fabricated Futures

    Juan Frano Violich

    9 Outcomes + Conclusion

    Tolya Stonorov


    Tolya Stonorov is Associate Professor of Architecture and Associate Director of Norwich University’s School of Architecture + Art. Tolya has practiced design-build since 2006, when she co-founded her design-build collaborative firm, Stonorov Workshop. She has received multiple awards for excellence for her professional and academic work from the American Institute of Architects’ New England and Vermont chapters, among others. In addition, she received the Vermont Women in Higher Education Peggy Williams Award for her teaching and scholarship. Tolya gives lectures and participates in symposium panels nationally and internationally. Her latest book, The Design-Build Studio: Crafting Meaningful Work in Architecture Education, was published in 2017 by Routledge.

    'FABRIC[ated] situates the historical, theoretical, and etymological roots of textiles in contemporary architectural research, practice, and discourse to substantiate the important role that fabric has as an active and pliable interface for transformation, resiliency, and change in architecture. Moving fluidly between research and practice, the book surveys academic experiments in studio pedagogy to 1:1 full-scale built projects. Through critical essays and case study projects that span gender and expression to minimizing waste through fabric formwork and digital fabrication, FABRIC[ated] positions textiles as a timely and innovative contributor to sustainable, responsive, and socially driven architecture at a time of ecological and sociopolitical crisis. FABRIC[ated] provides a fresh look at the historically intertwined relationships between textiles and architecture to open new design and fabrication strategies, digital methods, material efficiencies, and collaborative models to address pressing issues in our built and natural environments.' - Jenny E. Sabin, Arthur L. and Isabel B. Wiesenberger Professor in Architecture and Associate Dean for Design; Director, Sabin Lab; Department of Architecture / AAP, Cornell University; Principal, Jenny Sabin Studio; President, ACADIA

    'FABRIC[ated] is a surprising and stimulating compilation of thoughts and experiences that vindicate the transcendence and possibilities of fabric and membranes in the future of architecture and society. A first part develops the theoretical framework underlying the academic and professional experiences that are presented in the second part, so that the case studies do not appear as a miscellany of remarkable curiosities, but rather as contributions to interdisciplinary, sustainable and digitalized innovations engaged with people to contribute to a positive society.' - Josep I. de Llorens Duran, Senior Professor, School of Architecture, Barcelona, Author: Fabric Structures in Architecture

    'If architecture is to be understood as a third skin, as has been described, then a closer relationship between building and clothing—the so-called second skin—is in order. In Fabric[ated], Tolya Stonorov assesses the expansive capacities of textiles in architecture. Through invited essays, case studies, interviews, and documented experiments, she constructs a broad and compelling depiction of fabric innovation in the designed environment. As we scrutinize many aspects of construction and resource use today, FABRIC[ated] reveals how buildings can be more flexible, interactive, and imaginative—and embody a smaller footprint.' - Blaine Brownell, FAIA LEED AP, Professor and Director, Ravin School of Architecture, University of North Carolina at Charlotte

    'There is a revolution happening in architectural materials. Not many years ago, there were five groups that covered the field: metal, wood, masonry, concrete and glass. Now new options such as printed ceramics and engineered wood have been increasing the opportunities of built solutions. Tolya Stonorov’s new publication, FABRIC[ated], thoroughly introduces and explores the history and exciting possibilities of fabric, a material that offers a wide range of spatial solutions. Importantly these go beyond form-making to consider potential positive impacts of social justice and sustainability at a time when these are greatly needed.' - Bryan Bell, Executive Director, Design Corps, Professor, NC State University, Co-Founder, SEED Network