Since 1455 we no longer must use only the handwritten word. Johannes Guttenberg (in the opinion of some the most influential person of the second millennium) developed the printing process and printing press. The letters then were ornate, the alphabet included characters found only in Old German. Gothic Script, or Blackletter, was the name given to his font. Let’s remember that it took nearly a lifetime for a monk to hand-copy the Bible. No wonder that a big part of society at that time was illiterate!
Until the 18th century most of the typefaces were serif-adorned. If you are not sure what a serif is- it’s the little cross-bar ending a line such as little feet on the capital A. It gives the letter a finished look. See Times New Roman for references
There was a theory that those little dashes on the bottoms of letters mostly allowed the eye to move from one to another quicker. It’s debatable, I think.
The shapes of serifs, much like the shape of the letters themselves changed over time. They evolved and devolved-depending on your definition of progress. Initially, the serifs were bracketed, as the ink would naturally fill the angle where they met the line of the letter.
EX An example is Garamond and its successor Baskerville. In their evolution, serifs started slanted (in Garamond) when on the top of the letters, then over time became straight, then thick, then thin.
The word “design” can be used to describe an arrangement with a purpose, intent. In graphic design, the intent may be as simple as to inform the public, and the purpose can be creating a composition that supports the purpose. Anything from a pattern on fabric to elaborate fractal composition, or simply placing a title on a page constitutes design. And by the way, Nature does it best. The rest of us just imitate and show our perspective on Nature.
Let’s face it, ineffective and unpleasant design abounds. Items placed sloppily, out of context, outshouting each other on the page with bright colors and big fonts, or a message lost because too many unrelated elements and fonts distract the potential recipient. In our digital age, the tools of designers are available to many of us. This does not mean all of us know what to do with them.
Attempting design is much like having a full bin of Lego blocks of various size, color, and shape. Knowing which ones to choose and why, is the start of an intentional design. The possibilities can be overwhelming and novice attempt is often to pour a bit of everything on a page. Especially, utilizing newly discovered features of a software (WordArt, font outline in Word is an example) can be tempting.
Playing with the elements on a page can illustrate the possibilities and has a lot of value. Design, however; starts with a purpose and thought. So, if you are not a professional but need or want to come up with a clear design keep in mind that:
Woven media is more difficult to print on than paper or metal because the surface is not as smooth. Dye sublimation, because of its durability is suitable as a technique to adorn materials that are worn, or used in ways that is subject to abrasion. Our belts, fobs (key chains), lanyards and suspenders are produced using dye-sublimation.
Here’s how the technique works:
Sublimation, for those who don’t know the word, is a change from solid state to vapor skipping the intermediary liquid state; much like vaporizing dry ice. This requires an application of high energy in the form of heat.
Water-based sublimation dyes are substances that are deposited on paper. The paper then is pressed against the webbing under high temperature (approx. 400F, 40 psi for 60-90 seconds) to transfer the image. The temperature is high enough that the dye on the paper matrix vaporizes and embeds into the fabric--much like a tattoo. It becomes an integral part of the webbing and it will not wash or wear off.
Dye sublimation revolutionized aspects of printing and is one of the main techniques for non-paper print. Others include Direct to Garment, UV printing and screen printing (formerly known as silk screen printing).
Key chains have been in use for a long time, since 1888 according to Webopedia. The origin of the word “fob”, according to Sid Kemp (life coach) is (…)either Middle English fobben, or German Fuppe (pocket) or the German foppen meaning sneak-proof.
According to Merriam Webster: Definition of fob1: watch pocket (not the one in the vest)
2: a short strap, ribbon, or chain attached especially to a pocket watch
3: an ornament attached to a fob chain
4: or key fob: an object attached to a key chain or key ring; especially : a small electronic device used typically in place of a key (as to unlock a door or start a vehicle) or to remotely initiate the action of another device (such as a garage door)In modern times fob can be used as an imprecise description of the object attached to keys or a watch.
Before the 1980s it was chiefly a low-tech device that would personalize one’s key ring. And as such it could have also been called a key chain even though chain was not always part of the set.
Since the 80s, the meaning of fob began to include an electronic access device to substitute or support a key. Recently, fob can also mean a small security device for an electronic item.
Fob as a personalized key chain can also play a decorative role. Two Chicks Conspiracy produces this kind of fob. Our fob is a 9” polyester webbing imprinted with a design. We offer fobs with our original stock designs and we also design custom images for organizations and locations (visitor centers), businesses, and groups of aficionados. In recent years, a lanyard became another way to flag a bundle of keys. Although lanyards were originally 36” long strings to hold up an ID tag around one’s neck, recently some social groups (mostly people under 30) use it as an extralong key fob.
We can also produce many of our designs as lanyards. Just ask!
One of the oldest ways to hold up men’s pants was to use a cinch (drawstring) or suspenders (called braces in UK). Since the 16th century they have been a part of men’s attire. According to Truewest magazine, during the Civil War belt loops were an occasional part of the uniform and around 1857 were seen on baseball uniforms- but were slow to catch on. Some said the hot summer of 1893 inspired men to give up their suspenders and use belts.
According to Ecosalon the fashion website, around 1850 belts made it to women’s apparel as a decorative element. However, the dropped waist in flapper dresses in the roaring 20s did away with belts, but not for long. Since the 1930s women started to wear pants and women’s belts were back in play. In the 50s, skinny belts adorned prim and proper ladies but soon after belts became a sign of individual taste and at times panache.
Levi Strauss put belt loops on their 501 jeans in 1922, but the iconic pants still were equipped with buttons for suspenders and a cinch for those who didn’t want to part with their traditional ways. In 1937 the buttons were taken off the Levi jeans, and users of suspenders had the option of press-on buttons.
For men’s suits, suspenders are still a thing. The advantages are that they need not match the leather of the shoes, and that pleated pants fall differently as a person moves and do not bunch up. Belts on the other hand are not likely to be snagged or hooked, as well as are easier to maneuver while undressing.
The buttons sown on pants for suspenders are still a better option for elegant pants as the fabric may be damaged by a frequent use of clips to affix the suspenders. Suspenders have also become useful accessories for certain professions and activities (tool belt users, winter sports enthusiasts). They can be an element for a fashion statement or simply an expression of interests or to indicate membership in a team.
Two Chicks Conspiracy has catered to belt users of all ages and genders by creating designer custom printed belts, but we are planning to expand our offering soon to include suspenders, especially for ski and snowboard pants.