Harness Design

For the design, I started with a shape I had already created for my Wearable Tech Design class that I am taking along with Thesis. The idea was to create a utility harness for future crafters, so it is very similar. Both projects deal with crafting as identity and projecting power. For the other project, I decided to go with a more symmetrical design, so I could focus more on modularity and optimizing tool storage on the body. It made sense to revisit this design because it is what inspired me to make my thesis wearable as well.

Mockup of harness design in muslin

I altered the shape a bit and made a version in neoprene. The neoprene has a lot more stretch than the leather, but the weight is similar enough to the leather, so it was helpful for planning. It's also what I use for prototyping, so it's nice to see all the pieces in one material.

I tried to create a shape that would compliment the female body and give room for storage on one side. I think the asymmetry could help balance the potential bulkiness of the arm piece.

Neoprene mockup - front Neoprene mockup - back

Knitting with Leather

One idea I had was to integrate knitting into the leather. I bought some leather cord which I knit. I tried a few different stitches and needle sizes.

Rib stitch (top) and stockinette stitch (bottom)

I still have not found a use for this technique in the design, but it was an interesting test.

Knitting with Yarn

I also experimented with adding yarn to the design. I think adding some delicate aspects to the garment could be a nice contrast. I picked a very fine yarn with larger needles to create a lace-like feel. I made a few swatches with different stitches.

yarn swatches

Again, I haven't figured out where I would use this. They seem too delicate to integrate into the structure of the harness, so they may become a decorative part.


I've chosen a white leather for this project and gunmetal hardware for a strong visual contrast. I am really becoming obsessed with hardware. I had no idea when I started working with leather how much time I could spend just looking a buckles in a trimming store. For this project, I have chosen a few different types of closures to play with, and I'm thinking about how the pieces will interact.

White leather paired with gun metal hardware