Creative Design: Professional

Renaissance Armor as an Inspiration for 21st Century Clothing Design

  • Carolyn C Schactler (Central Washington University)


This research project creates a 21st Century garment inspired by the European armor designs of the 15th and 16th centuries. The challenge for this design was to edit myriad armor features and to adapt them to a cohesive fabric design, rather than directly transplanting metal features onto a garment without producing costume wear. This design modernizes and combines six elements in a cohesive presentation: the haute/shoulder flange, gorget, gauntlet, organ-pipe pleat, and armor “hardware”: rivets and hinges. The project uses new construction and couture techniques to achieve an innovative silhouette. Techniques include flat-pattern drafting, draping, quilting, set-in piping, and hand-stitching delicate and/or complex features of the garment. A new technique resolved the issue of joining several bulky layers by sewing a single strip of bias satin directly to the edges of the curve and turning it right-side out. 

Keywords: armor, haute, piping, medieval

How to Cite:

Schactler, C. C., (2022) “Renaissance Armor as an Inspiration for 21st Century Clothing Design”, International Textile and Apparel Association Annual Conference Proceedings 79(1). doi:

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Published on
31 Dec 2022
Peer Reviewed