Jul 12, 2017
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Pleat system offers stretch-to-fit fashion for kids

Jul 12, 2017

Spending money on clothes that your kids soon grow out of has got to be up there as one of parents' biggest shopping gripes. While it is true that stretch t-shirt fabric, expanding waistbands and button pant extenders are handy, for many years that has been about as exciting as it gets. That was until Royal College of Art graduate Ryan Mario Yasin came along and invented a pleat system that allows clothes to tackle growth spurts.

One of Petit Pli's expanding, pleated all-in-ones by Ryan Mario Yasin©Courtesy of Petit Pli

The aeronautical engineer's innovative expandable Petit Pli range offers baby clothes that stretch to fit children as they grow. How? A set of permanent pleated folds let clothes 'unpack' when pulled, as children get bigger. Despite a vested interest in high-tech textiles and shape memory polymers, pleats were a 'market-ready' no-brainer for Yasin.

The designer came up with the idea for Petit Pli after buying clothes for his nephew which no longer fit by the time they turned up.

He is researching ethically-sound manufacturing possibilities and working on raising investment to retail his collection, which features waterproof and windproof outwear, including cute all-in-one bodysuits, sized to fit children aged 6 to 36 months.

Yasin hopes that creating kids' clothes that last longer will help reduce the huge amount of waste generated by the garment industry.

"Children outgrow their clothes in a matter of a few months, yet we clothe them in miniaturized adult clothing, as opposed to designing them from the ground up," he told design magazine Dezeen, adding that "with 11 million children in the UK, I thought it was time we redesigned children's garments."

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