Balloon Dress | Design Squad

Balloon Dress | Design Squad


There’s something I’ve always
wanted to try: to engineer a dress made
out of unusual materials. NAOMI:
These here are 160s, which means they are one-inch
wide and 60 inches long. Hi, I’m Deysi from Design Squad, and I’m here with Naomi
from Red Balloon Company. So, do you want to see
one of my dresses? Yes. Naomi is a balloon twister. That’s so cool! I want to combine fashion design
with engineering because I’m giving
a speech to kids about what engineering
means to me at a TEDx Youth Event. So I need a cool dress. Can it be purple, please? Sure, yeah. Here, I’ll show you
a bunch of different colors. We’ll have the base of it be
mostly purples, and then we’ll have some
of these golden rod highlights and also add some blues
in the mix. Okay. We got our colors, and I’ll see you in a week
for the fitting. Okay, yay! I’m excited. Thank you so much. You’re welcome. To start making the dress, I’m going to make a small twist
called a pinch twist. So this is the basic unit
of construction of the dress. I’m going to keep
adding a pinch twist and a 160 going down
until I’ve made it long enough to go all the way
around the dress form. One balloon in itself is not
that structurally strong, but when you build
with the fibers, which are the balloons,
the more structural it gets. This is pretty strong
and sturdy. A balloon dress
is really engineering to make something temporary,
as opposed to permanent. I think Deysi is going
to be here very soon. DEYSI:
Is it ready? Yeah, you ready to see it? Yeah. All right, here we go. (gasps) Wow! And it’s purple, yes! So can I try it on? (balloons rubbing, squeaking) It’s alive! Just gonna twist these… (balloon pops) (screams) Naomi, this is the noisiest
dress I’ve ever tried on. (another balloon bursts) Ta da! I like it. And it’s comfortable, actually,
once you get used to it. (squeaking) I’m here at the TEDx event
and I am very nervous. At Ted X Youth events,
kids and adults share ideas about how they
experience the world in a new and different way. I’ve been walking around,
showing off my balloon dress, A lot of people
have been taking pictures, they’ve asked for autographs, I let some kids touch the dress, but very carefully
because we don’t want any of the balloons to pop. HOST:
So our next speaker, born in Mexico,
grew up in East Boston, and then she decided she wanted
to become an engineer. And she’s wearing what I was
going to wear. Deysi. (applause) Naomi Greenfield,
the owner of Red Balloon Company is the creator
of this spectacular dress. Naomi, instead of weaving
traditional materials like fabric or thread,
she wove balloons together. Engineers can do amazing
things by understanding how their materials work. I always liked building things, but it wasn’t until the summer before my senior year
of high school that I actually got the
opportunity to really try it out when I was asked to be
a contestant on Design Squad. I figured out that my passion
for math and my love for theater would be
channeled into one field: engineering. Because of Design Squad, I was
able to discover first-hand what life for engineers is like. I learned from the challenges
we tackled on the show that engineering enabled me
to work with great people, solve problems, be creative, and make a difference
in people’s lives. Design Squad also showed me how much creativity
there is in engineering. My last words to you
about engineering are: If you thing something
is important to you, follow through with it. Don’t be afraid to explore
your creative side, because it’s very important
to put your own input into it. Thank you. (applause) It’s over! I did it! Yay!

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