Women's commuter cycling apparel : functional design process to product Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/cj82k953d

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  • Bicycle commuting is increasing in popularity due to exercise benefits, cost savings, and environmental concerns. Available specialized cycling apparel does not reflect the aesthetic and expressive needs of the bicycle commuter. Urban bicycle commuters need clothing that allows them to bicycle safely and effectively while maintaining their identity as professionals. Female bicycle commuters face additional pressures due to increased emphasis on appearance and gender expression. Many female bicycle commuters do not wear specialized cycling apparel because it does not meet their needs for self-expression. The purpose of this study is to identify the apparel needs of female bicycle commuters in Portland, OR and to design a garment based on those needs that is appropriate for both the workplace and the commute. Watkins' design process was applied in this research. The research design also incorporated Lamb and Kallal's FEA (functional, expressive, aesthetic) model of consumer need. Analysis of the design problem was performed using qualitative interviews, researcher participation, and a content analysis of currently available garments marketed to the urban and commuter cycling market. Design criteria was developed and evaluated using interaction matrices, and six designs were developed from the criteria. One design of the six was developed as a prototype and evaluated. The results of the qualitative interviews revealed that the fulfillment of expressive needs was key to satisfaction with cycling apparel. Therefore the expressive needs of the population were emphasized during the design process. This led to the development of a model for apparel needs of female bicycle commuters that involved the hierarchical ranking of needs in four areas of design: fit, fabric, design details, and color.
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