When I think of pleats I have an image of old fashioned pleated skirts! but there is a lot more to pleats than I thought as I found out when I attended a presentation by one of the last pleaters in the UK. Terry from F. Ciment (pleating) LTD Terry (the presenter) Brought in patterns and fabric samples, he explained the whole pleating process which I found fascinating.
I was blown away by the complexity of some of the intricate designs they produce. Some of which are amazingly futuristic. The pleats are created by hand folded patterns made out of card. A pattern can take up to 80hrs to create. (see photos)
Pleating is a steam process, no chemicals are used during the pleating process. Permancy depends entirely on the fabric, for example 100% Polyester fabrics are best for holding the pleats, even when washed. Natural fibres can be pleated but care needs to be taken when wearing and cleaning. The fabric is streched onto the patern then steamed.
The company designed Lady Gagas outfits for her last world tour and the Queens skydive outfit at the 2012 Olympic opening ceremony!. This company is also happy to pleat fabrics for fashion/design students.
To find out more info on the company click on the link F. Ciment (pleating) LTD