Eva x Carola named as finalists in the 2018 Future Textile Awards

We’re delighted to announce that Eva x Carola in collaboration with Santoni Shanghai are finalists in this year’s Future Textile Awards, in the Best Innovation in Sport Textiles category. 

The Future Textile Awards occur every two years and are dedicated to finding the most innovative and cutting-edge developments within the textile industry. Awards are given to material experts, product developers and designers around the world who have demonstrated the most ground-breaking work. We are excited to be part of this important initiative. As part of the awards application, we showcased our Personalized Performance collection which is a collaborative project with Santoni Shanghai. In this post, we’ll tell you a little bit about the collection and why it has attracted attention from industry leaders. 

Why: modern problems, cutting edge solutions 

With the global market for activewear predicted to reach US$231.7 billion by 2024, there has never been a better time to find future-facing solutions and new approaches to activewear. However, with the demand for sportswear at an all-time high, consumers are faced with a never-ending supply of new sportswear brands. Garments have fallen victim to the throwaway culture that modern life has created, making them disposable and unsustainable. 

There are solutions to this very modern problem, and those solutions lie in technical and digital innovation. With the Personalized Performance collection, we are creating a new breed of garments that stand out in a sea of conventional designs. This new type of clothing holds true value for the wearer because it has been tailored specifically to their needs. Designed from an intellectual perspective, each garment is customized so that it enhances a person’s experience and the way they move their bodies during sports.  

Seamless technology, 3D knit and careful engineering are key to achieving this. With these techniques we can create a garment that fulfils several functions such as cooling, support, and comfort. We can also add exceptionally beautiful elements and graphics which make the garment psychologically pleasing, distinctive and unique.

How: personalised performance 

Producing this new type of garment requires a completely fresh approach to the design process. We carefully analysed the body to determine which functions are needed and where. We thought deeply about aspects such as compression, shape and touch and how these might benefit the wearer when exercising. Each of these benefits can be delivered by creating a specially designed texture on a stitch-by-stitch level. Taking a scientific approach, textures are then rigorously tested and measured for their performance levels, including: 

• Power: the performance delivered by the garment’s fabric 

 • Energy: the energy exerted by the body as a result of garment composition 

 • Comfort: the “second skin” effect  

This is a fascinating process that can have many different outcomes. Adjusting machine settings and using different yarns can produce different results. For example, increasing or reducing restriction levels within the material allows us to create garments that are suitable for different sporting activities, such as cross fit training or competing. 

Santoni Shanghai’s seamless 3D knitting technology has been instrumental in this process; not only can we create second skin garments with an unparalleled level of comfort, we can also create textures that can be knitted together all in one go. 

It’s also important to bear in mind that this technique goes beyond clothing and footwear; we can use the same approach to produce other products such as a car seat or a travel pillow. This idea has huge potential and we are currently exploring different concepts for development. 

What: the future of making  

Building on the fantastic results we have seen with our current work, we have an exciting goal for the future which has attracted the attention of the Future Textile Awards. It involves digitalisation, machine learning and programming benefits into the materials rather than the machine.

We can create a new kind of manufacturing where, using 3D knitting, the material itself can be programmed. Using specially designed algorithms, we can program the machine to make specific adjustments to garments based on the needs of individual wearers. Parametric algorithms will generate the pattern, and this will be directly compiled into machine-readable knitting files. Instead of working in 2D, the design process will be based on 3D visualisation and even “4D” simulations where the movement of the body and the reaction of the textiles can be manipulated. 

This has far-reaching implications for the future of activewear, how we use textiles and how we deliver value to the wearer. With a user-friendly digital interface, the consumer will be able to specify which functions or benefits they would like a garment to deliver, and the knit technology will immediately know how to produce this and what settings to use.

With the ability to personalise and visualise their own products, the consumer is empowered and a new consumer experience is created. This will also create a relationship between the machine manufacturer and the consumer that does not currently exist, whereby they can connect directly with each other. The manufacturer will gain new insights into the needs of the market. Perhaps the best part of this is that the digital system will be self-learning; with each input from the consumer it will gain more intelligence.

The winners of this year’s Future Textile Awards will be announced in Amsterdam, Netherlands, on Wednesday 7 November. We will keep you updated! In the meantime, if you’d like to learn more about the kind of garments we are producing using the techniques mentioned here, you can read about our Essential Bra via https://www.evaxcarola.com/blog/the-essential-bra. 

We’re always delighted to talk about our work. If you have any questions or comments about this project, don’t hesitate to get in touch via studio@evaxcarola.com.  

Special thanks to Martijn ten Bhömer,  Xi’an Jiaotong-Liverpool University and Saxion University for their continuous support, research, analyses and testing.

The Essential Bra


In the 21st century, the majority of the world’s population will be living in urban environments. In fact, the United Nations estimates that 66% of us will be living in cities by 2050. At Eva x Carola, we want to design products that cater for this future lifestyle - multifunctional products that are tailored to the urban environment and can be worn for all occasions, from training to travelling to work.
As we mentioned in our last blog post, we believe that today’s garments should enhance a person’s body and their experience as they move. They should be tailored to an individual’s needs, using data-driven design techniques. Following on from this idea, our next phase will be to design some new essentials using these principles.  


We’d like to introduce you to the first garment in this new breed of our designs: the sports bra. This is a garment that is, by nature, extremely personal. It can vary in many ways; not just in function, size, and style, but also in terms of how it’s worn and the type of support it needs to offer. It’s also a garment that’s becoming more and more popular with today’s consumers - a 2015 survey by the NPD Group showed that 41% of millennials had worn a sports bra in the previous week. This highlights a growing trend amongst younger women that favours the sports bra over the traditional padded push-up bra. Put simply, the sports bra is undergoing a fascinating metamorphosis – it is becoming a garment that is worn for all occasions, regardless of whether a person is working out or not. 


With these changes in mind, we have created a bra that not only looks good but also provides the optimal level of support and comfort to consumers, taking the current sports bra trend one step further. We’ve been carefully analysing the needs of the wearer and incorporating them into the design of this garment. We’ve also been using body mapping techniques to engineer zones for temperature regulation, sweat, movement, and support, in collaboration with Santoni Shanghai’s seamless knitting technology. This data-driven design process helps us to decide which textures are placed where in the garment. Our aim? To rethink the current construction of the bra to provide better values for comfort, energy and power.  


So, how have we developed our essential bra? For a start, seamless knitting has been key to creating this product. This is a sustainable, all-in-one approach that not only avoids irritation but also helps to create that all-important “second skin” feeling. The technique allows us to shape the design seamlessly to each body type. To create an amazing look and an ultra-light feel, we use PP yarn from Aquafil, a material that hugs and supports the natural form of the body. 

Firstly, we provide a physically supportive bra that can also be mentally pleasing, helping the wearer in all stages. Through engineering each individual stitch, we were able to build levels of support throughout the bra, allowing us to facilitate movement where the body requires it. As a result, the garment moves freely with the body rather than fighting against it. 

Another advantage is that, through stitch-by-stitch design, we were able to eliminate the under wiring that is commonly used in bras, thereby decreasing the weight and making a lighter, more supportive bra. 

By revising construction and pattern-making, we were able to adjust the number of panel pieces normally used to make a bra, creating a highly engineered single-piece supportive bra. We achieved this by rethinking the nature of support. We realised that through smarter, more sustainable design, we could help the wearer to feel more comfortable.   

Eva x Carola’s essential bra is therefore a garment for the
new age. Once our vision of customisable seamless production becomes a reality,
it will usher in a brand-new era – one where women everywhere can enjoy a bra
that has been truly tailored to their needs.

We’d be delighted to hear from anyone wishing to collaborate with us on this journey or, if you are interested in wear testing with us, we invite you to get in touch to discuss things further. Simply drop us an email to studio@evaxcarola.com and tell us how you’d like to get involved. 


Concept, Design and Development - Studio Eva x Carola 

In collaboration with SPINEXPO 

Manufacturing and Knitting expertise - Santoni Shanghai 

Yarns - among others Invista, Aquafil and Nilit 

Images - House of Iceberg

The Beauty of Making


 In today’s fast-moving world, consumers are bombarded with a constant supply of new sportswear and sportswear brands. The lines between fashion and sportswear have become blurred, leading to garments that are disposable and unsustainable. Often, the resulting products do little to address the performance needs of the athlete. 

 How do we overcome these issues? We have the answer: sportswear that is designed from an intellectual perspective, with the user always in mind. We believe that in order to deliver true value to athletes, garments must be specifically tailored to their needs. So, we focus on creating clothes that can be fully customised to enhance a person’s body and their experience as they move.  


When making performance wear, the first thing we do is analyse the body to determine how a garment can benefit the athlete. We ask ourselves: which functions need to be placed where in the garment, and what other considerations do we need to keep in mind? Some of the features we want to incorporate into our designs include: 

 • Compression that not only feeds muscles, but feels light and invigorating, whilst remaining breathable 

 • Comfort in the areas where the skin is sensitive, providing a good fit so that the body can move freely 

 • Shape that corrects body position and promotes an active posture, whilst remaining lightweight 

 Combining these elements means we need to produce a garment that fulfils several different needs at once. To achieve this, we use a collection of different functional yarns in combination with different machine settings. Designs are then body mapped so that they work together seamlessly.  


To create different functions within one seamless knitted garment, we engineer textures that have different values. We do this by adjusting elements such as yarns, needles, machine settings, tension and the way the texture Is built. 

 Textures and functions can be engineered on a stitch-by-stitch level, and can be seamlessly combined when knitting the garment in one go. We can then test and measure these textures against metrics like “Power”, “Comfort” and “Energy”: 

 • Power: the performance delivered by the garment’s fabric 

 • Energy: the energy exerted by the body as a result of garment composition 

 • Comfort: the “second skin” effect 

We assess these performance values and adjust them where needed by selecting different yarns or adjusting knit stitch settings. By increasing the restriction of the texture, for example, we can increase the energy levels of its performance, making the garment suitable for training and cross fit. By contrast, lowering the restriction and the energy levels makes the garment more suitable for competition. 

To learn more, you can watch our video The Beauty of Making below. For the latest information and images from Studio Eva x Carola, follow us on Instagram @evaxcarola.


Concept, Design and Development - Studio Eva x Carola

In collaboration with SPINEXPO

Manufacturing and Knitting expertise - Santoni Shanghai

Yarns - among others Invista, Aquafil and Nilit

Moving Images - House of Iceberg


Using Format