Colour-changing ink transforms flame-engulfed
headdress by Lauren Bowker

| 4 comments

Alchemist Lauren Bowker applied heat-sensitive ink to a sculptural leather garment and used fire to alter its colour during a presentation for her company The Unseen (+ movie).

Coinciding with London Fashion Week earlier this month, Bowker's design house The Unseen debuted a series of garments embedded with her colour-changing ink at an event in the Dead House - a series of vaulted passages beneath Somerset House where her studio is located.

Colour-changing ink transforms flame-engulfed headdress by Lauren Bowker

She created a giant black headdress made from overlapping layers of hand-stitched leather that engulfed the wearer like a shell, completely covering the head and extending down past the hips.

Colour-changing ink transforms flame-engulfed headdress by Lauren Bowker

During the presentation, a figure wearing this headdress was lead down a tunnel and positioned beneath a spotlight. Large flames erupted around the garment as wicks that protruded from the body were lit in unison.

Colour-changing ink transforms flame-engulfed headdress by Lauren Bowker

As the heat from the fire lapped the material, peacock-tail colours began to emerge and disperse across the surface. When the flames died down, the green and purple tones remained on the material as the model was lead back into the depths of the underground vaults.

Colour-changing ink transforms flame-engulfed headdress by Lauren Bowker

The collection also included garments worn over the torso that react to the movement of air, changing colour as environmental conditions shift in varying climates and when people come close or walk past.

"Seasonally each piece exhibits different tones of colour," Bowker told Dezeen. "The summer environment will create a brightly coloured jacket that will dull in the wind to become black again, whereas in the winter the pieces are black until the wind hits them then revealing the colour shift."

Colour-changing ink transforms flame-engulfed headdress by Lauren Bowker

Made in a similar layered style to the larger heat-responsive piece, these designs were displayed on models in alcoves along the subterranean tunnels.

"The fins in each jacket are shaped and designed to create turbulence trips within the wind - triggering the colour-change response," said Bowker.

Colour-changing ink transforms flame-engulfed headdress by Lauren Bowker

She has previously applied different versions of her reactive inks to feathered garments that are sensitive to light.

  • DL1119

    Brilliant!

  • Toby

    I wonder if the ink came from OCLI in Santa Rosa?

  • Truth

    Video > Product

  • ExpertWitness

    Brilliant idea and interesting experience/performance. Yet, I’m underwhelmed by the amount of fire and the actual change to the garment. Seems like it could have been taken a lot further.